BEVERLY HILLS, April 12, (THEWILL) – The House of Representatives has resolved to set up an ad-hoc committee to investigate the payment of $16.9 million to lawyers by the Attorney-General of the Federation for the recovery of ‘Abacha loot’.
The committee is also to investigate the alleged engagement of Nigerian lawyers for a fee of N6 billion after the actual work had been concluded by another set of lawyers.
THEWILL recalls that there were reports that the Minister of Justice and Attorney-General of the Federation (AGF), Abubakar Malami, engaged the services of a set of lawyers in 2016 for a fee of about N6 billion.
However, Enrico Monfrini, a Swiss lawyer hired by the Federal Government since 1999 to work on recovering Abacha loot, was said to have finished the job since 2014 when Mohammed Bello Adoke was AGF.
It was reported that the Minister of Finance, Kemi Adeosun, refused to approve the payment of $16.9 million fees to two lawyers for the recovery of the loot worth $321 million.
Curiously, the lawyers hired by Malami are Oladipo Okpeseyi and Temitope Adebayo who both worked for President Muhammadu Buhari’s Congress for Progressive Change (CPC) when Malami was the legal adviser of the party.
In the unanimously adopted motion moved by Mark Gbilah (Benue-APC), the House called on the President to suspend the payment of the said fee of $16.9 million or any part thereof to the lawyers pending investigation on the matter.
The committee is expected to conclude the investigation within six weeks.