Wednesday, December 29, 2010
Isn't this sweet.
The $35 Million bribe offered by Halliburton, plus the $170 Million sweetener in the Swiss banks, to get Dickwahd Cheney off the hook for making a $180 Million bribe made while he was CEO of Halliburton, is itself illegal in Nigeria.
In a letter to Nigeria's anti-corruption watchdog, Osuagwu Ugochukwu, a prominent lawyer in Abuja, said the withdrawal of charges against Cheney was a breach of the law.No one will get their hands on Dickwahd before death does, but it is fun to watch everybody jump through hoops try to straighten this out.
“We know as a point of law that once a criminal charge has been filed in a competent court, issue of penalty of fine is for the courts to impose and not parties," he wrote. "Hence, we are shocked to hear that EFCC imposed a fine on an accused person. We also know as a point of law that criminal matters cannot be settled out of court as in civil matters in Nigeria."
"The outcome of the deal with Halliburton tends to suggest a smart way of making quick money while leaving the culprits unpunished," an editorial in Nigeria's Daily Sun argues. "This method invariably has its own drawbacks that could encourage similar criminal acts in future."
Indeed, many observers have likened the deal to an officially sanctioned bribe by Halliburton -- or as a shake-down of the Texas-based oilfield services company by the Nigerian government.
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