The federal government has decided to publish the names of all the looters of Nigeria’s treasury following a order issued by a Federal High court in Lagos.
The court ordered the Federal government to immediately release the names of high-ranking public officials from whom public funds were recovered.
The order was made yesterday, Wednesday, July 4, by Hon Justice Hadiza Rabiu Shagari after a freedom of information suit number: FHC/CS/964/2016 which was brought by Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP).
Mr. Abubakar Malami who doubles as the minister of justice and the attorney-general of the federation confirmed after the federal executive council meeting that the government has agreed with the court decision.
Mr Malami said that the government would carry out the order since it does not violate any court rules.
SERAP deputy director, Timothy Adewale who argued the case on behalf of SERAP and was present in court this morning when the judgment was delivered said.
“This is a victory for justice, rule of law, transparency and accountability in this country.
”The judgment shows the way forward in the fight against corruption and impunity of perpetrators.
”We will do everything within the law to ensure full compliance by President Mohammadu Buhari and Acting President Osinbajo with this landmark judgment.
”It would be recalled that the Ministry of Information last year published details of the recoveries, which showed that the Nigerian government successfully retrieved total cash amount N78,325,354,631.82, $185,119,584.61, £3,508,355.46 and €11, 250 between May 29, 2015 and May 25, 2016.
”Also released were recoveries under interim forfeiture, which were a combination of cash and assets, during the same period: N126,563,481,095.43, $9,090,243,920.15, £2,484,447.55 and €303,399.17.
”Anticipated repatriation from foreign countries totalled: $321,316,726.1, £6,900,000 and €11,826.11.
”The ministry also announced that 239 non-cash recoveries were made during the one-year period.
”The non-cash recoveries are farmlands, plots of land, uncompleted buildings, completed buildings, vehicles and maritime vessels.
”Subsequently, SERAP was issued an FOI request and gave the Minister of Information, Alhaji Lai Muhammed 14 days to disclose the names of all suspected looters.”