Nigeria, Jersey, US reach agreement to repatriate $321m Abacha loot
London, Jan. 30, 2020 (AltAfrica)-Nigerian government on Wednesday struck agreement with the Island of Jersey and the United States of America for the repatriation of $321m stolen assets recovered from the former military ruler, late Gen. Sani Abacha.
Addressing State House Correspondents after a Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting presided over by President Mohammadu Buhari, Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, said council okayed the tripartite agreement to be signed next week for the purpose of repatriation of the looted assets.
Malami disclosed that the recovered funds will be expended on Lagos-Ibadan Expressway, Abuja-Kano road and the 2nd Niger Bridge respectively.
He recalled that during Buhari’s first term, the administration succeeded in enhancing the recovery of the looted asset by over 1,300 per cent.
“It is in line with that spirit of aggressive recovery of looted assets that the office of attorney general has been pursuing the recovery of looted assets,” Malami said.
“We have overtime been discussing with other jurisdictions including the Island of Jersey and the United States for the purpose of the repatriation of looted assets connected to Abacha family, Diezani Alison-Madueke, Kolawole Aluko among others.
“It is within this context that we have now come to terms with this jurisdiction – the Island of Jersey, United States of America and indeed Nigeria by way of negotiating for the repatriation of sizable assets.
“As it is, we have concluded on the understanding that the sum of $321 million will be repatriated in due course inclusive of James Ibori assets as well.
“We are hopeful that by next week we will sign the agreement for the looted assets. The assets that are going to be repatriated is located and in the custody of Island of Jersey. But the United States of America came on board because it has obtained an order for forfeiture against the assets, considering that the medium of exchange used in the looting the assets is the US dollar.
“Arising from that the three jurisdictions will naturally be factored into the repatriation processes.
So the amount upon signing the MOU will be remitted from the Inland of Jersey within a number of days agreed upon.
“Within 28 days, the money will be repatriated from the Island of Jersey to the United States and thereafter within 45 days, it is agreed by the parties that the United States of America will make the necessary arrangement for the eventual repatriation to the Nigerian state.