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Diezani: Bizman Omokore not arrested by EFCC



•Why he visited Lamorde on Monday

Oil investor Chief Jide Omokore was not arrested by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for alleged corruption and money laundering, it was learnt yesterday.

But following the invasion of his business premises, Omokore voluntarily went to the Chairman of the EFCC, Mr. Ibrahim Lamorde on Monday to ask questions on why the anti-graft agency took such a step.

After a mutual audience with Lamorde, the businessman returned to his residence in Abuja.

None of the officials of the EFCC was willing to speak on what transpired when Omokore visited the agency on Monday.

All relevant officers of the commission, who should speak on the issue, also switched off their mobile phones.

A top source said: “The businessman was in EFCC on Monday on his own to make enquiries on why the commission’s operatives visited his business premises. He also said he is available in the country if there are issues on his business.

“So, Omokore was neither arrested nor detained by the EFCC contrary to what is being bandied about.

“As a matter of fact, Omokore did not make any statement to the EFCC on the ongoing probe of a former Minister of Petroleum Resources, Mrs. Diezani Alison-Madueke.

“He has nothing to do with the issues for which Madueke is undergoing investigation by the National Crime Agency in the UK

A source close to Omokore said: “As I speak with you, the oil tycoon has been at his residence in Abuja to prove that he was neither arrested nor detained.

“Omokore is no doubt a major player in the oil and gas sector but he is not a dirty businessman as being painted.”

Rated by Forbes as one of the “10 Nigerian multi-millionaires you’ve never heard of,” Omokore was the founder of Energy Resources Group (ERG).

The ERG was said to be worth $400m per annum.

He is also a co-chairman of Atlantic Energy Drilling Concept Nigeria Limited.

Findings showed that the purported arrest of Omokore has put EFCC under pressure because he is a major stakeholder in the oil and gas sector.

A source in EFCC said: “Every investor at home and abroad is interested in why Omokore was at this commission. But only the EFCC chairman can give details.”

The Head of Media and Publicity of the EFCC, Mr. Wilson Uwujaren, was said to be running a training session at the agency’s academy as at press time.

Source: nation