The Executive Director of the Civil Society Legislative and Advocacy Centre, CISLAC, Comrade Auwal Musa Rafsanjani has charged anti-graft and law enforcement agencies in the African continent to ensure that the original owners of stolen assets are given back their assets when recovered.
Speaking at the Global South Forum for Asset Recovery In Nairobi Kenya, Rafsanjani who doubles as the head of Transparency International Nigeria, decried the practice of marginalizing the original owners of stolen assets when recovered by governments across the continent.
He said the case between the Nigerian government and Delta state as well as the mismanaged COVID-19 funds in Kenya are good examples, adding that if not properly checked, the assets risk being re-looted by officials who don’t mean well for their country.
He also charged African countries to come up with legal frameworks for the management of recovered assets, stating that it will encourage countries outside the African continent where the assets are located to send them back to Africa.
Rafsanjani also charged law enforcement and anti-graft agencies in Nigeria to adhere strictly to the recently passed Proceeds of Crime. (Recovery and Management) Act, 2022 when it comes to seizures, confiscation and management of recovered assets.
Rafsanjani said while the new law does not solve the issue of proper coordination, the provision for anti-graft agencies to operate a database of recovered information where citizens can know the status of seized assets is commendable.
He, however, lauded President Buhari and the National Assembly for the piece of legislation which according to him was long overdue.
The forum had representatives drawn from civil society organizations in Nigeria, Equatorial Guinea, Kenya, Angola, South Africa, Tanzania, Uganda, Ukraine, United Kingdom, United State, France, Germany, representatives from the African Union secretariat, GIZ amongst others.