Acting President Yemi Osinbajo has called for the prosecution of banks and their officials who aid corruption by hiding looted funds. He faulted those who accuse the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) of engaging in media trial, saying it was corruption fighting back.
The Acting President spoke in Abuja at the opening of a three-day conference on “Promoting International Cooperation in Combating Illicit Financial Flows and Enhancing Asset Recovery to Foster Sustainable Development”.
According to The Nation, Osinbajo said financial institutions that aid corruption should face the consequences.
He said: “There is no way the transfer of these assets can happen without a handshake between the countries that they are transferred from and the international banking institutions in the countries in which they are transferred. There is no way it will happen without some form of connivance.
“We have to look at somehow delegitimising those kinds of financial institutions and criminalising them.
“Banks and financial institutions that actually engage in this must be called out and made to face the consequences of engaging in criminal practices. If that is not done, we are not likely to go very far.
“In the agreement and conventions we will be signing, we must ensure that financial institutions are not given a free run and to hold them accountable., “
The Acting President said corruption fights back when stolen monies find safe havens and are accessed by the corrupt.
“In Nigeria, for instance, corruption fights back so eloquently that government itself, if not careful, can be overwhelmed,” he said. ,
Osinbajo said some of those guilty of corruption fight back through media attacks on government.
“If you look at the anticorruption fight in Nigeria, there is a major fight back in the media. There is a media war, between people fighting corruption and those behind the stolen funds. ,
“It is called ‘media trial’ – I don’t know what that means. If you discover, for instance, large sums of money in an air conditioned room, there is no where it will not make news in the world. ,
The Acting President said some development partners were reluctant to provide funding for Nigeria because they believed the country was not poor.
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