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Minister of Justice Abubakar Malami didn’t see it coming so he did little to prepare himself when he finally stood before a House committee to account for his management of recovered loots on Tuesday.

So he was all denials as allegations and paper trails kept flying in his face.

He denied receiving N2bn from the CBN to prosecute terrorism suspects.

Alleging, Adejoro Adeogun, chairman of the committee, said, “The honourable AGF is requesting payment of approved solicitors’ fees. You  are asking for solicitors’ fees from recovered funds’ accounts. I don’t think it is proper; that is what we are talking about.

So the lawmaker popped the question about the payment of N2 billion which the AGF received for the prosecution of terrorism suspects.

“Was it supposed to come from that [recovered funds] account or should it have been part of the budgetary spending? Is it that when you exhaust your budget, you ask these people to send you some money?”

Malami, however, denied making specific requests from the recovered loot.

“Where the money comes from is a function of the federal ministry of finance and I am not making specific requests out of the recovered assets,” Malami said in his defence.

The lawmakers then presented a letter from the Central Bank titled, ‘Request for approval to effect critical payments in respect of federal ministry of justice for the recovered (funds)’.

“The AGF knows that this is coming from the recovered funds; which means that the attorney-general knows that he is making a request that is against the law,” Adeogun said.

In the face of nothing concrete to offer, Malami dug in his heels, denying the request originate from his office.

“There is nothing indicating a previous correspondence from the office of attorney-general nor is there anything in the opening paragraph making reference to a letter from the office of attorney-general,” Malami said.

On the records of recovered assets presented by various government agencies.

“The EFCC said they handed over this number of vessels to your office, the Navy gives a different number and you have a different number — the same items, different inventories, different figures,” Adeogun said.

And as expected, Malami blew off the responsibility.

“I am not in a position to confirm the discrepancies with the number of assets.”

Nigerians have started calling on President Muhammadu Bhati and his administration to account for recovery and administration of the assets the government recover from corrupt politicians and civil servants.

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