By Johnbosco Agbakwuru
ABUJA—PRESIDENT Muhammadu Buhari will today at the 72nd Session of the United Nations General Assembly make case for the intervention of world leaders for the refund of the country’s looted funds slashed away in various foreign bank accounts in Europe and America.
President Buhari has expressed dismay that some countries where the looted funds were slashed, had been reluctant in ensuring that the monies were released to the government of Nigeria, despite efforts of his administration to ensure that such monies were returned.
The President was said not to be happy that the foreign governments were introducing various technicalities which have caused a slow down in the efforts to recover the looted funds.
Despite the ongoing anti-corruption war in the country, some governments are said to be demanding for firm guarantees that the monies if retrieved, would not be re-looted by corrupt officials in the country.
The President is, therefore, expected to highlight his administration’s efforts and successes at rooting out corruption and stressing the need for the world leaders to assist in facilitating the repatriation of the money to enable government utilize them for the development needs of the country.
A top government official who spoke from New York, said the administration believed that foreign governments had no reason to continue to keep the looted funds because Buhari has demonstrated seriousness in tackling endemic corruption since his assumption of office.
President Buhari is also expected to speak to the world leaders on his administration’s effort to meet its flagship objectives of reviving the economy and curtailing insecurity.
Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, confirmed, yesterday, that Buhari would address the issues of stolen funds repatriation, economy and security in his address of the august body today.
Recall that before the President departed Abuja, the Special Adviser had in a statement, given details of the President’s United Nations’ engagements.
He had said that beyond the national statement, Buhari would join other world leaders at the welcoming reception to be hosted by the UN Secretary General, Antonio Guterres, with who he would later hold a bilateral meeting.
Buhari will also hold a lunch meeting with President Donald Trump of the United States of America, along with other world leaders.
Adesina in the statement disclosed that during the General Assembly, Nigeria would participate in high level meetings on ‘Prevention of Sexual Exploitation and Abuse: Building Momentum for Change,’ the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting, a High Level Event organized by the African Union under its Theme of the Year: ‘Road map on the Demographic Dividend: from Commitment to Action,’ among others.
At the events, President Buhari and members of his delegation will strive to project Nigeria as a strong moral force and responsible member of the international community.
The statement said Nigeria’s commitment to global peace, security and development would also be reaffirmed and where necessary, the need for increased international cooperation in the fight against corruption.