Nigeria’s Minister of Information, Lai Mohammed, has said that the federal government must respect the privacy of looters, who have voluntarily returned their loot. Mohammed stated this while speaking on Channels TV on Sunday.
The Minister said releasing their names was not “morally right”, adding that some of them were not aware that the money given to them was diverted.According to him, the government’s priority is to recover stolen funds.“There are some people who voluntarily returned the loot and explained that when the money was given to them, they never knew the source of these funds. Can you in good conscience name and shame that kind of person?” he asked.
“Those who has voluntarily returned the money, I think we owe them the obligation to respect their privacy. Because they said they did not know that this money was from a particular source and they returned it.
“Those people whose accounts have been temporarily forfeited, if you go to name them, they are going to hold you up in court for months or years. And we said that our major intention is to recover our loot first.
“Some people returned the money that was given to them for campaign when it has been established that that money was actually meant for the prosecution of Boko Haram. Such people, we do not feel that morally, it will be right to name them.
“Two, we don’t want to be bugged down by litigations. You name a person that he has stolen money or he has returned money, and you have fully recovered the money from him or you’re in the process of recovering it because probably there is just an interim forfeiture,…you’re going to be bugged down with all kinds of litigations.”
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