The Federal Government said it has returned the £4.2m recently recovered James Ibori loot to the Delta State government.
The Accountant General of the Federation, Ahmed Idris, disclosed this on Tuesday when he appeared before the House of Representatives Ad-hoc Committee on Assessment and Status of all Recovered Loots Movable and Immovable Assets from 2002-2020.
TheFact Nigeria recalled that the federal government and the Delta state government had been at loggerheads over the disbursement of the money stolen from the the state by Ibori.
While the Federal government insisted that the recovered loot would be used to finance some Federal projects, the Delta state government objected, saying that the money was stolen from its coffers and must be returned to the state following its recovery.
The Accountant General while responding to a question on the difference between the Federation and Consolidated Revenue Fund Accounts of the Federation, and the desegregation of Recovered Assets and funds said some recoveries are for specific state governments.
He said, “I know there was a time recovery was made on behalf of Plateau State. There was one for Bayelsa. There was one for different states, even Delta. Such recoveries go specifically to those states.”
The committee of the committee, Adejoro Adeogun who specifically referred Idris to the recent Ibori loot received from the United Kingdom said, “Let us give an example. There is something trending. The recovery of Ibori loot. When would it be paid to the state?” Adeogun queried.
But Idris responded, “It has been paid to the state. It was paid to Delta state.”
Adeogun pointed out that this was contrary to information in the public domain that it was used for specific projects.
However, Idris responded, “Any recovery arising from looted funds from a particular state goes to the state. The state governors would not even allow this to fly. They will take the Federal Government to court for holding their money. So we don’t joke and we don’t play with that. We pay them their money.”
As at the time of this report Delta state government is yet to confirm receipt of the recovered loot.