Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.


Nigeria, Switzerland ink accord on Abacha loot

09 March 2016, 07:29

Abuja - Nigeria and Switzerland on Tuesday announced an agreement to return $321 million in public funds stolen by the former military ruler Sani Abacha.

The agreement came after a meeting in Abuja between Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo and a Swiss delegation including the country's foreign minister and ambassador.

Both countries said the "letter of intent" to return the money provided a framework to help recover other looted funds by corrupt officials and to determine how it would be spent once repatriated.

"We guarantee that recovered assets would be put to uses for which they have been intended," Osinbajo said in an emailed statement.

"The framework will guarantee that returned assets will be used in the interest of the people of this country."

Abacha, in power from 1993 until his death in 1998, is suspected of having siphoned off $2.2 billion from Nigeria's central bank in what the United States has called "brazen acts of kleptocracy."

Also read: SERAP accused W'Bank of withholding information on Abacha loot

The head of Switzerland's Federal Department of Foreign Affairs, Didier Burkhalter, said Switzerland was the first country to have returned a share of Abacha's ill-gotten wealth.

Ten years ago, some $720 million was returned to Nigeria, he said in a statement on the Swiss foreign affairs website.

The $321 million was initially deposited in Luxembourg but confiscated by a court in Geneva in December 2014.

Burkhalter said the fight against corruption was "one of Switzerland's priorities" and the letter of intent "confirmed the principle of returning stolen assets monitored by the World Bank.

"This monitoring is a legal requirement to ensure that the funds can indeed be returned to Nigeria and used, as set out in the agreement, to support social programmes to assist the people of Nigeria," he added.

President Muhammadu Buhari has begun a purge of corruption since taking office last year and vowed to recover what he said were "mind-boggling" sums of money stolen over decades.



Read more from our Users

Nigeria @ 56: Words to my green f...

A leader’s job is not to dictate, but rather to be respected, admired and be a trustee, of the land we love, with so much potential, a land which should be freer than free. Its still a long way to fufilling our destiny! Read more...

Submitted by
Isaac Asabor263
Recession: An opportunity for Nig...

The recession should be seen as an opportunity for the country’s promotion as long as we all collectively conduct ourselves in a patriotic manner, writes Isaac Asabor.  Read more...

Submitted by
Black and White

We want to imitate the whites in everything because we are ignorant of our inherent originality and content. We spend all our Naira to acquire his inventions because we so oblivious of our natural endowments that we allow him have it for free. Read more...

Submitted by
Nate Nat
Adamawa State University Mubi: A ...

ADSU integrity forum has accused the Sunday Joshua Wugira, a lawyer, of adopting unorthodox tactics by abusing his privilege by attacking the integrity of ADSU Vice Chancellor Dr. Moses Zira Zaruwa, writes a News24 reader. Read more...

Submitted by
Abdulsalam Jubril
My Country Nigeria (Part One)

Poetry by Abdulsalam Jubril.

Submitted by
Abdulsalam Jubril
Recession, dearth in leadership a...

Every leader has the opportunity to become great and making himself immortal in the lives and hearts of people for generations to come. Will Mr. President seize this opportunity?, questions Abdulsalam Jubril. Read more...