Publish names of looters- SERAP tells Buhari

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President Muhammadu Buhari of Nigeria

President Muhammadu Buhari of Nigeria

Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) has “welcomed publication of the list of recovered funds by the Federal Government as a positive development towards entrenching a culture of transparency and accountability in government.”

The organization however asked the government to “publish the names of high-ranking public officials from whom the public funds were recovered, and spend recovered funds in a transparent and accountable manner so as to remove opportunities for re-looting recovered loot.”

In a statement on Sunday by SERAP Executive Director Adetokunbo Mumuni the organization said: “The recovered funds must be spent to directly benefit Nigeria’s most vulnerable populations particularly to improve their access to quality education, healthcare including for children, women and the elderly, and regular and uninterrupted electricity supply. It will be a double jeopardy for victims of corruption if recovered funds are re-looted, as it was the case with Sani Abacha recovered loot.”

Reacting to the non publication of names of those alleged to have looted the treasury, SERAP stated: “This is a case of grand corruption, which has devastated many lives and fundamentally contrasts with the ideal of government as a public trust. Therefore, high-ranking government officials suspected of turning the public treasury into a private cashbox should be prepared to accept a higher degree of openness about their official conduct than private individuals.”

“Publishing the names of high-ranking government officials that have already returned stolen public funds will not infringe their right to presumption of innocence in particular and fair trial in general if the government can provide a caveat to make it clear that such disclosure does not suggest an assessment of the guilt of those named, and that they remain suspects until proven guilty by a competent judicial authority.”

“The authorities responsible for combating corruption cannot be expected to refrain from all …Read More

Source:: PM Newspaper