House of Representatives has called on President Muhammadu Buhari to ensure the £4.2 million recovered loot from former Delta state Governor, James Onanefe Ibori is given to Delta State.
Human Rights lawyer, Femi Falana also called on the federal government to ensure the money is given to Delta State and faulted the claim made by the Attorney General and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami that federal government is the owner of the recovered stolen fund.
The House of Representatives in a resolution reached today after a motion of urgent public importance sponsored by all lawmakers from Delta State and monitored by Channels Television, the lawmakers emphasized that the funds were stolen from Delta State and as such should rightly be returned to the state.
Adding that the funds are needed for the infrastructural development of the state.
The lawmakers also said the total money is £6.2 million and not £4.2 million as being reported.
The lawmakers thereafter asked the Federal Ministry of Finance to direct the Attorney General of Federation, Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, and give the House all particulars relating to the recovered money.
This as human rights lawyer, Mr. Femi Falana (SAN), faulted Malami legal position on the issue that the returned stolen fund belongs to federal government because it was federal law that the former Delta State Governor, James Onanefe Ibori breached.
Falana as earlier reported by PUNCH Newspaper said funds stolen from the Bayelsa State Government years ago were returned to the state government.
He said this was what also happened in the case of Joshua Dariye, a former Governor of Plateau State who was convicted for diverting state funds.
Femi Falana said giving the lbori loot to the Federal Government was at variance with Section 162 of the constitution.
“The £4.2m does not belong to the
Federal Government. The money confiscated from Governor Joshua Dariye in the United Kingdom was recovered by the Federal Government, repatriated to Nigeria and returned to the Plateau State
Government”, he said.
Yesterday, it would be recalled that United Kingdom government announced plan to return £4.2 million stolen by the Former Delta State Governor, James Onanefe Ibori.
The Minister of Justice and Attorney General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami also yesterday at the MoU signing ceremony with the UK government said President Muhammadu Buhari has directed all recovered illicit financial inflow to be used to finance federal government projects, specifically the construction of the Second Niger Bridge, Kano-Abuja road and Lagos-Ibadan road.
This drew the attention of the civil society organization, Africa Network for Environment and Economic Justice, ANEEJ to organise urgent press conference and demanded the money be returned to Delta state and not Federal Government.
ANEEJ also demanded the two governments to disclose publicly the real amount recovered from James Onanefe Ibori.
Abubakar Malami thereafter in an interview during Politics Today programme on Channels Television yesterday said the federal government is expecting £100 million from the United Kingdom being stolen assets by James Onanefe Ibori.
He added that the about to be repatriated £4.2 million is part of the £100 million expected and remaining amount is still under judicial processes and trial.
He said the recovered money belongs to the federal government because it was federal law that was breached and not Delta state law.
Delta State government through the state commissioner of Information, Mr. Charles Aniagwu has since reacted, describing the development for federal government under the leadership of President Muhammadu Buhari to take what belongs to Delta state as an act of wickedness.
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