Nigeria's former oil minister Diezani Alison-Madueke made headlines worldwide in 2015 after she was arrested in London on suspicion of bribery and money laundering. The former minister reappeared on the news earlier this month, when the Federal High Court in Lagos charged her with money-laundering.

Madueke, described by the charge sheet as "still at large", was accused of money-laundering in connection with a bribery allegedly given to three members of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC). One of the commissioners pleaded guilty at a hearing on 5 April.

Alison-Madueke, who served under the administration of former president Goodluck Jonathan, was accused of bribing the officials before the 2015 presidential election that saw President Muhammadu Buhari emerging as winner.

Who is Diezani Alison-Madueke?

Alison-Madueke, 56, served as petroleum minister between 2010 and 2015. She was apprehended with four other people by the UK's National Crime Agency (NCA) in October 2015.

The arrest came just days after Buhari temporarily appointed himself as the country's oil minister, and vowed he would recover millions of dollars worth of funds he alleged were stolen during previous administrations.

Alison-Madueke was later released on bail, while Nigeria's financial crimes unit sealed one of her houses in the federal capital Abuja on the night of her arrest, according to Reuters.

Shortly after her arrest, Alison-Madueke's lawyer said she had gone to the UK to seek treatment for breast cancer. The former minister, who called on Nigerians to pray for her in the fight against the disease, is believed to be still in the UK.

Alison-Madueke became the first female president of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (Opec) in 2014.

While she ran the oil ministry in Nigeria, the former governor of Nigeria Central Bank Sanusi Lamido Sanusi was suspended after he claimed $20bn (£12bn) of oil revenue "had gone missing" from state oil company Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC).

According to the Premium Times, Alison-Madueke – who has been dubbed "one of the most powerful officials of President Goodluck Jonathan" – admitted to spending $3.5bn of Nigeria's money without budgetary approval in February 2014.

Aison-Makuende denied she took money from the country's treasury, contrary to some reports and said that while Nigeria's oil minister is influential, the NNPC has more power in the decision-making process.


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