UK To Return £4.2m James Ibori Loot to Nigerian Government
The British government has announced plans to return £4.2 million in funds recovered from former Delta state governor James Ibori’s friends and family.
Ms. Catriona Laing, the British High Commissioner to Nigeria, stated this at a ceremony in Abuja today for the signing of a memorandum of understanding (MOU) between the Nigerian and British governments.
She stated that this was the first of several planned returns. She went on to say that the money being returned to the Nigerian government came from Ibori’s friends and family.
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She noted that the Ibori case is complex, and that the UK authorities are still determining the total amount involved in the case.
President Buhari has directed the returned loots to be used to complete the second Niger Bridge, the Lagos to Ibadan expressway, and the Abuja to Kano expressway projects, according to Minister of Justice and Attorney General of the Federation Abubakar Malami, who signed on behalf of the Nigerian government.
Ibori was governor of Delta state from 1999-2007. Ibori pleaded guilty to ten counts of money laundering, fraud, conspiracy to defraud, and other offences in a London court on February 27, 2012. He also admitted to stealing more than $250 million in public funds while governor.
After serving his sentence in a UK prison, the former Governor of Delta State was released in December 2016.