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Foreign Countries Frustrating Efforts To Recover Loot – Osinbanjo

Vice President Yemi Osinbajo has said tracing, freezing and retrieving stolen assets was frustrating and difficult for most African countries.

Osinbajo spoke in Paris, France, at the anti-corruption and integrity forum of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).

He said it had been difficult “to get back stolen assets from the international financial system such as banks that ought not to have received those funds in the first place if even the most routine questions were asked.”

“There must be more rigorous enforcement of rules promoting transparency in the international banking and financial systems, especially more stringent KYC rules on customer identity, source of wealth, and even country of origin.

“Countries hosting global financial centers, and other usually targeted destinations of illicit flows must be held more accountable to enforce mechanisms which ensure transparency of ownership, control, beneficial ownerships, trusts and other legal contrivances that may be used to camouflage financial or other assets.

“Tracing, freezing and Return of stolen assets has proved in many cases to be exceptionally difficult for most African countries.

“We in Nigeria have seen just how difficult it is to get back stolen assets from the international financial system, such as banks that ought not have received those funds in the first place if even the most routine questions were asked”

Osinbajo disclosed that Nigeria just signed a bilateral mutual legal assistance treaty on collaboration of financial crimes with numerous countries within and outside the West Africa.

His words: “Secretary-General, we must work collaboratively to ensure transparency in financial transfers, and outlaw secrecy jurisdictions.


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