Nigeria and the United States government have reached an agreement on the return of over $23 million of the Abacha loot.
The agreement signing ceremony was held in the office of the Minister of Justice and Attorney General of the Federation, Mr. Abubakar Malami on Tuesday.
While Mr. Malami signed on behalf of the Nigerian government, the U.S Ambassador to Nigeria, Mary Beth Leonard signed on the behalf of the U.S government.
According to Mr Malami, the fund when returned will be invested in three ongoing projects by the Federal Government, including the ongoing Abuja-Kaduna road and the 2nd Niger Bridge.
In his speech, Malami said the decision to return the stolen funds, which is tagged ‘Abacha-5’, was a product of a series of negotiations and meetings between Nigeria, the US department of justice and the UK National Crime Agency.
The attorney-general said the loot, when repatriated, will be used for the completion of the Abuja-Kano road, Lagos-Ibadan expressway and the Second Niger Bridge.
Nigeria has in the past recovered several other tranches of the Abacha loot, which are proceeds believed to have been diverted from public coffers by the military administration of General Sani Abacha in the 1990s.
In 2020, the US and Jersey also agreed to return over $308 million in confiscated funds to Nigeria.
In 2006, about $723 million in Abacha loot was returned to Nigeria from Switzerland.