Policy Paper on Asset Recovery Regime
Efforts to address corruption has been a central theme of successive governments in Nigeria, especially since the country’s return to democratic rule in 1999. At the presidential poll in 2015, the fight against corruption became the one of the two key campaign messages on which President Muhammadu Buhari was elected to office. Since then, several measures have been taken both at the national and international level to deal with the issue.
Some highlights of the measures taken include signing onto the Open Government Partnership and implementing same, the introduction of a central revenue management system through the use of a Treasury Single Account (TSA), the enactment of the Nigeria Financial Intelligence Unit Act and a marked increase in the recovery of looted assets from within and outside the country
In the latter respect, there have been significant repatriations of funds from foreign jurisdictions and related developments over the last few years. For instance, in December 2017, Nigeria signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Switzerland and the World during the maiden Forum on Asset Recovery (GFAR) for the return of $322.5 million dollars. And in August 2018, a further £70 million was returned from the United Kingdom. More recently, Nigeria also signed an MOU with the United States of America and the Island of Jersey for the return of $311 million in February 2020.