President Muhammadu Buhari has assured that his government would not spare corrupt and unpatriotic Nigerians who have hands in the controversial Process and Industrial Developments Limited (P&ID) contract that led to the United Kingdom Court $9.6 billion judgements against the country.
The President on Tuesday, while addressing the nation noted that his administration renewed partnership with the 9th National Assembly would facilitate the swift passage of enabling laws that will institutionalize these anti-corruption efforts in our criminal justice system.
According to him, “Treasury Single Account policy, the Whistle-blowers’ Initiative, expand the coverage of the Integrated Payroll Personnel and Information System as well as the Government Integrated Management Information System have saved billions of Naira over the last four years, and deterred the rampant theft and mismanagement of public funds that have plagued our public service.
“The Ministry of Justice, the Independent Corrupt Practices Commission, and the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission will continue to address this menace. We are determined to ensure that transparency and good governance are institutionalized in public service.
“Furthermore, we partnered with our friends abroad to combat tax evasion, smuggling, terrorism and illicit financial flows. In June 2018, I assented to the Mutual Assistance in Criminal Matters Act, to provide a domestic legal framework for obtaining international assistance in criminal matters.
“This measure has already strengthened our law enforcement agencies in obtaining evidence, investigating suspects and facilitating the recovery, forfeiture and confiscation of property implicated as proceeds of crime.
Speaking on the US$300 million recently identified as part of the Abacha money-laundering case, the Nigerian leader assured that his administration is working closely with the US Department of Justice to conclude a Memorandum of Understanding to expedite the repatriation of these funds.
“In this connection, I call upon our States to intensify their own efforts to instil greater fiscal transparency and accountability. And to ensure greater fiscal efficiency and optimum use of our very scarce resources.
“The blight of Corruption is fighting back. Nevertheless, this is a battle that we shall see-through and this is a war, which we shall win by the Grace of God.
“I will also call upon all Nigerians, from every walk of life, to combat corruption at every turn. By choosing to question and confront corrupt practices, by reporting unethical practices or through whistleblowing. Together, we can overcome corruption and will no longer be a country defined by corruption.
“Nigeria will emerge from our present challenges stronger and more resilient than ever – but only if all of us join hands to entrench Good Governance, foster Inclusive Economic Development, and defend and protect our Nation from all those who would wish us ill,” he added.