16032016C Abacha

‘We’ve returned $723m in 10 years,’ Swiss govt reveals

The government of Switzerland has reportedly returned $723 million (about N142.43 billion) of the looted Nigeria’s funds by former dictator, Sani Abacha in the last 10 years.

The Swiss government disclosed this in a memorandum of understanding titled “Letter of Intent on the restitution of illegally-acquired assets forfeited in Switzerland,” which the European country signed with the Nigerian government on Tuesday, March 8, 2016, Premium Times reports.

According to the report, the funds returned excludes the $321million (about N63.24 billion) which the Swiss authorities are expected to send back to Nigeria in the coming days.

The agreement was signed by Attorney-General and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, and the Swiss Head of Foreign Affairs Department, Didier Burkhalter.

In 2014, Nigeria and the Abacha family reached an agreement for the West African country to get back the funds, which had been frozen, in return for dropping a complaint against the former military ruler’s son, Abba Abacha.

He was charged by a Swiss court with money-laundering, fraud and forgery in April 2005, after being extradited from Germany, and later spent 561 days in custody. In 2006, Luxembourg ordered that funds held by the younger Abacha be frozen.

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