The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has revealed that the United States threatened the federal government to ensure that the over $308million looted and laundered abroad by former Head of State, the late Gen. Sani Abacha, is not re-stolen in Nigeria again, otherwise it would recover the money from Nigeria.
The warning was sequel to the February 4, 2020, repatriation pact the federal government signed with the US, and the government of Jersey to return the money.
The EFCC, which was also involved in the pact, said the US government warned against the money being re-looted.
The anti-graft agency’s Secretary, Mr. Olanipekun Olukoyede, said this in Lagos at the weeked during an anti-corruption walk organised in collaboration with the Ministry of Youths and Sports Development and the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC).
Olukoyede said: “Two weeks ago, I was privileged to be on the team that went to recover $308million for Nigeria. They are from Washington.
“You know what they told us when we wanted to sign the treaty? They had the audacity to look into our eyes and said: ‘If you people steal this money again, we will collect it back from you.’
“I stood up against them, I said: ‘We are not a corrupt nation. A few people might have stolen money, but Nigeria is not a corrupt nation. We have a lot of youths who are not corrupt.
“And you know it is not their fault, (they said that) because they have seen recovered loot being looted again.”
Olukoyede urged the youths to shun corruption and be diligent in whatever they do.
He said: “We have arrested so many youths. If we keep putting youths in jail, what is going to be the future of Nigeria?
“So, we want to encourage you; where ever you see corrupt practice, say no to it. Resist it. If anyone is trying to lure you to it, say no. You can win by integrity. Integrity pays.”
“Very soon as youth corp members will start job-hunting. But where are the jobs? Why aren’t you getting the jobs? A few people have plundered the country’s resources. ‘But let me assure them that at the EFCC, we are not relenting. Let corruption fight back, we will stand against it. We will fight corruption. We will send them to jail. We are not going to give them any chance again in Nigeria”.