Why FG has valid claim to Ibori-linked £4.2m loot – SAN

Amid the controversy surrounding ownership of the £4.2 million expected from the United Kingdom as part of looted funds linked to former Delta State Governor James Ibori, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN) , Mr Yemi Candide-Johnson, SAN, on Thursday said Delta State Government has no valid claim to the money.

He argued that the money belongs to the UK government, in accordance with its laws that authorises it to confiscate proceeds of crime from persons convicted via British judicial system, such as Ibori.

He said the British government did not have to, but it decided to repatriate the money to Nigeria, as more or less an act of benevolence, based on strict terms and conditions that Nigeria was bound by.

Nigeria, he argued, could not breach the terms of that agreement without consequences.

Representatives of both the UK and Nigerian governments signed an agreement for the return of the money to Nigeria in Abuja on March 9.

The signing of the agreement, which took place at the Federal Ministry of Justice, Abuja, was done under the auspices of the U.K.-Nigeria Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), which came into force in 2016.

Controversy over the funds arose following a disclosure by the Attorney-General of the Federation (AGF) and Minister of Justice Abubakar Malami (SAN) that the recovered loot will be channelled into federal projects.



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