Government responds to letter from NGOs urging UK ministers to return Nigerian assets stolen by James Ibori

24 October, 2023 | 1 minute read

Spotlight on Corruption in September 2023 joined almost 50 other Nigerian and UK civil society organisations organisations in writing to Home Secretary Suella Braverman and Foreign Secretary James Cleverly to urge them to ensure the prompt, transparent and accountable return of more than £100 million in assets stolen by James Ibori, the corrupt former governor of Nigeria’s Delta State.

The government has now responded to this letter, with Security Minister Tom Tugendhat writing that:

The UK recognises the crucial role played by civil society in uncovering corruption, and we will continue to support their contribution and participation in international fora, including through the UNCAC. We highly value the experience that these groups hold and the insights they can share when returning assets.”

On the return of the assets stolen by James Ibori and associates, the Minister writes:

Once the funds have been realised, in line with our asset return framework, we will work with the relevant stakeholders to ensure that these funds are returned via the most appropriate mechanism and in the best interest of both the requested and requesting state. This must be done in accordance with legal due process, which can take time, but ensures a fully fair and transparent process.”

You can read the full letter on the link below:

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