EFCC Advocates Unconditional Repatriation Of Stolen Funds

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Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Mrs Farida Waziri, has called for an unconditional repatriation of over $148 billion annually stolen from African countries and hid in safe havens in developed economies.

Waziri, who made the call while presenting  Nigeria’s paper at the just concluded Ist Commonwealth Regional Conference for Heads of Anti-Corruption Agencies in Africa, in Gaborone, Botswana also challenged her colleagues from other African nations to go beyond bemoaning the slow pace of corruption cases in courts to definite demand for the establishment of special courts that would prosecute only graft cases.

She said until this was done, anti-graft agencies on the continent would continue to complain about the slow pace of trial in corruption cases.

She said though Nigeria was yet to have special courts, the crusade for its creation, which she started in 2008, had continued to win more support and advocates across the country.

The EFCC boss said despite the constraints of slow judicial process, the support and independence given the anti-graft agency by the Federal Government, especially President Goodluck Jonathan, had made it to cover a lot of grounds within a space of eight years.

According to her, “if without special courts we can secure over 600 convictions within this short time, you can imagine what we will do if we are to have dedicated judges or courts to hear only corruption cases. ‘’Today, our record of recovery is in excess of $11 billion. But beyond this, we have seized through both summary and interim forfeiture orders 459 units of real estate, 593 units of vehicle/ oil vessel, 404 units of bank account and 183,627 units of other asset within the same period  though we are yet to start operating a non-conviction based assets forfeiture regime which we desire.

‘’What it means is that, with special courts and assets forfeiture law, the war against graft would have been taken to a different level.”

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