Petroleum Minister, Allison Madueke’s N10b Jet Probe Saga Continues In Court

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The last has not been heard on the N10bn jet probe involving the Hon Minister of Petroleum, Mrs Diezani Alison Madueke. There’s been so much intrigue, twist and turn on this case already. One thing is clear, the Hon. Minister is one very powerful, and highly connected minister in this administration that even the Federal house cannot mess with. Also one may begin to wonder how this N10bn jet saga is actually going to end and who is going to come out the winner? Only time shall tell. Mainwhile, a Federal High Court in Abuja, on Monday refused a proposed amendment by the Minister of Petroleum Resources, Mrs. Diezani Madueke, to her suit challenging the National Assembly’s power to probe her spending of N10bn on chartered jet

The minister, the Ministry of Petroleum Resources and the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation are the plaintiffs in the suit.

Their proposed amendments are seeking additional prayers to their suit.

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The fresh prayers are to seek the court’s pronouncement on whether by the virtue of provisions of section 88 of the constitution, the National Assembly has the power to conduct oversight functions of probing government’s Ministries Departments and Agencies after receiving a petition to that effect.

Justice Ahmed Mohammed in his ruling on Monday held that granting such an amendment would change the character of the claims contained in the original suit before the court.

‘But the judge granted the proposed amendment to include a prayer seeking the court to determine whether or not the proposed investigative public hearing by the House of
Representatives was not illegal, null and void for failure to comply with the requirement of section 88 of the 1999 constitution.

The court had on June 19 made an order restraining the House of Representatives from going ahead with the public hearing on the allegation that Alison-Madueke spent N10bn
on a chartered aircraft. The order of the court is to subsist pending the hearing of the
substantive suit.

Justice Mohammed had given the order ahead of the plan by the House Committee on Public Accounts to carry out the probe on June 25, 26 and 27, 2014’The minister, the Ministry of Petroleum Resources and the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation are the plaintiffs in the suit.

Their proposed amendments are seeking additional prayers to their suit.

The fresh prayers are to seek the court’s pronouncement on whether by the virtue of provisions of section 88 of the constitution, the National Assembly has the power to conduct oversight functions of probing government’s Ministries Departments and Agencies after receiving a petition to that effect.

Justice Ahmed Mohammed in his ruling on Monday held that granting such an amendment would change the character of the claims contained in the original suit before the court.

‘But the judge granted the proposed amendment to include a prayer seeking the court to determine whether or not the proposed investigative public hearing by the House of
Representatives was not illegal, null and void for failure to comply with the requirement of section 88 of the 1999 constitution.

The court had on June 19 made an order restraining the House of Representatives from going ahead with the public hearing on the allegation that Alison-Madueke spent N10bn
on a chartered aircraft. The order of the court is to subsist pending the hearing of the
substantive suit.

Justice Mohammed had given the order ahead of the plan by the House Committee on Public Accounts to carry out the probe on June 25, 26 and 27, 2014’v