The Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Mr. Mohammed Bello Adoke, SAN, said yesterday that Nigeria
would do all within its powers to support moves by the United States Department of Justice to ensure that funds looted by former military head of state, General Sani Abacha, were repatriated to the country.
In a statement he issued in Abuja yesterday, the AGF, maintained that the overall objective of the effort was to guarantee that “Nigeria as the Victim State, is able to have the forfeited assets (money) repatriated to Nigeria to fund development projects for the benefit of the people in accordance with the dictates of Chapter IV of the United Nations Convention against corruption, UNCAC.
According to him: “The Federal Government of Nigeria welcomes the forfeiture proceedings initiated by the United States Department of Justice against the property related to the corrupt conduct of late General Sani Abacha, the former head of state of Nigeria, and his associates and the subsequent laundering of corruption proceeds.
“The proceedings will make it possible for the defendants to forfeit over $550million and £95,910 in 10 accounts and six investment portfolios linked to the Abachas in France, United Kingdom, British Virgin Islands and the United States.
“We applaud the efforts of the United States to recover the proceeds of corruption for the benefit of the people of Nigeria.
“As the Central Authority for the Federal Republic of Nigeria, my office has received requests for Mutual Legal Assistance for the Central Authority of the United States and we are cooperating with the United States in line with the obligations we assumed under the Treaty on Mutual Legal Assistance in Criminal Matters.
“The overall objective of these efforts is to ensure that Nigeria as the Victim State is able to have the forfeited assets (money) repatriated to Nigeria to fund development projects for the benefit of the people in accordance with the dictates of Chapter IV of the United Nations Convention against corruption (UNCAC). Let me assure you that Nigeria as State Party to UNCAC will do all that is required to realize this objective”, the AGF stated.
BY IKECHUKWU NNOCHIRI