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Corruption : Buhari seeks stiffer sanctions for corrupt persons

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ABUJA—PRESIDENT Muhammadu Buhari yesterday said the sanctions of jail terms for illicit financial flow was no longer sufficient to fight the menace. President Buhari who stated this while delivering a speech on “Illicit Financial Flows (IFFs) and Corruption: The Challenge of Global Governance” at the Peace Forum, in Paris, France, said stringent actions should be taken against perpetrators of illicit financial flows.



The Nigeria leader opined that it was based on the simple idea that international cooperation was key to tackling global challenges and ensuring durable peace. Buhari warned that continuous impunity would encourage more pilfering of countries’ resources to the detriment of poor and vulnerable populace. Nigeria, he said, had strengthened its laws and institutions to fight corruption, fast-track recovery of stolen assets and punish offenders. He called for more commitment from governments and international organizations. He said illicit financial flows posed a risk to the realisation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) as many countries grapple with the challenge of gathering resources to improve their Human Development Index, while a few privileged individuals continue to explore the weaknesses in financial systems. According to him, “Our experience in Nigeria is that financial crimes, such as corruption and fraudulent activities, generate enormous unlawful profits which often prove so lucrative that the threat of a jail term is not sufficient to deter perpetrators. “A more powerful deterrent is to ensure that profits and assets generated from illicit financial flows and corruption are recovered and returned to countries of origin. This is not to under-estimate the value of strong institutions. It only indicates that asset recovery represents significant deterrence compared to the traditional focus on obtaining conviction by the law enforcement agencies of the countries of origin. “As we take stock of the strengths and weaknesses of domestic, regional and international mechanisms against Illicit Financial Flows, I seize this opportunity to recall the Global Declaration Against Corruption made in London in 2016 and our commitment thereto



He also said that such stringent action should include crackdown on safe heavens and return of stolen assets to countries of origin. The Forum attended by over 70 world leaders was organised by the French Government and a number of Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs). The Nigeria leader opined that it was based on the simple idea that international cooperation was key to tackling global challenges and ensuring durable peace.



Buhari warned that continuous impunity would encourage more pilfering of countries’ resources to the detriment of poor and vulnerable populace. Nigeria, he said, had strengthened its laws and institutions to fight corruption, fast-track recovery of stolen assets and punish offenders. He called for more commitment from governments and international organizations.

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