ABOUT N2,514,651,800 (€5.5 million) stolen by the Nigerian former head of state, General Sani Abacha will be repatriated to Nigeria, Ireland Minister of Justice and Equality, Helen McEntee has said.
According to her, the Republic of Ireland Criminal Assets Bureau, agreement to repatriate the fund was reached following an order to repatriate the fund by a court in Ireland.
The fund which was kept in an Ireland bank account was frozen in 2014, was said to be part of about $3.6 billion so far recovered.
Transparency International estimates Abacha might have looted as much as $5 billion during his regime from 1993 to 1998.
McEntee said, “This represents the culmination of a long process which began with an internationally led investigation,” McEntee said in a statement on Thursday.
“The Criminal Assets Bureau took part in this international operation which led to the freezing of over $1 billion in funds worldwide, of which approximately €5.5 million was identified in a Dublin based bank account.
“The return of these assets will be the first time that Ireland has taken such action and will be a concrete demonstration of Ireland’s commitment to international cooperation in the fight against corruption and to assisting countries which have been adversely affected by corruption in the past, and is in line with our international obligations as a signatory to the UN Convention Against Corruption.”