The son of President-elect Bola Tinubu has been linked to a London company that paid $11 million for a London property that was previously taken from a well-known oil thief.
According to a report published by the business publication Bloomberg, Seyi Tinubu, Mr. Tinubu’s 37-year-old son, reportedly purchased the property in 2017.
They revealed that Deutsche Bank helped Seyi close the purchase by facilitating the use of an offshore shell company called Aranda Overseas Corporation. In addition, the property was described in the report as a private residence in St. John’s Wood with three floors, an eight-car driveway, two gardens, electric gates, and a gym.
Kola Aluko, a notorious oil dealer who allegedly collaborated with former oil minister Diezani Alison-Madueke to defraud Nigeria for nearly a decade, had previously had the property taken from him around 2016.
Mr. Aluko bought the property for approximately $15 million in 2013, indicating that it was sold four years later for a lower price, an uncommon scenario for such a high-end neighborhood. This was shortly after President Buhari took office in May 2015, and he began going after individuals who were suspected of having illegally enriched themselves under President Goodluck Jonathan (2010-2015).
Although Bloomberg was unable to confirm whether Mr. Tinubu, a 71-year-old businessman, was a part of the transaction, the matter may bolster critics’ claims that Mr. Buhari was transferring stolen assets he seized from cronies of his predecessor to his own cronies. A number of the assets seized in Abuja and Lagos, for example, had been linked to Mr. Buhari’s allies, including cabinet ministers. Mr. Tinubu has publicly claimed credit for making Mr. Buhari president in 2015.
In 2015, the outgoing leader of Nigeria claimed to hate corruption when he took office. However, since 2015, numerous multibillion-dollar corruption scandals have been linked to his wife, children, and close aides.
The London property now linked to Seyi Tinubu was reportedly purchased as part of Mr. Aluko’s approximately $2 billion theft of Nigerian funds, primarily through questionable oil transactions. Since 2015, Mr. Aluko and Alison have been on the run.