The Office of the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice on Sunday mentioned the Federal Government solely pays whistleblowers after a profitable restoration, not for mere tracing or publicity of suspected illegitimate funds.
Dr Umar Gwandu, the Special Assistant to the Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami on Media and Public Relations disclosed this in a press release on Sunday in Abuja.
The Minister was reacting to a letter allegedly by one Aliyu Lemu, Esq. purportedly written on June 22 on points revolving round fee of a whistleblower’s charges.
“The Office of the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice needs to make it categorically clear that one doesn’t get fee on account of exposing looted property, however on profitable restoration and lodgment of identical into the designated property restoration account on the Central Bank of Nigeria’’.
He mentioned the process for engagement of a whistleblower or restoration agent because it pertains to the Office of the Attorney-General of the Federation is as follows:
‘`A Proposal is submitted to the Office of the Attorney-General of the Federation, a Letter of engagement is issued to a whistle-blower or restoration agent the place the disclosure is assessed to have some prospects of success.
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“The restoration agent or whistle-blower is predicted to inform in writing the acceptance of the engagement.
“The restoration agent or whistleblower is predicted, upon acceptance, to not solely hint the property however get well identical and have it deposited in a chosen asset restoration account maintained by the federal authorities within the Central Bank which is often offered to the restoration agent in writing’’.
He added that the place these funds are ultimately claimed to have been lodged by a whistle-blower or restoration agent, the Central Bank points acknowledgement of receipt of the fund to the Office of Attorney-General on demand.
“It is the satisfaction of the above parts that entitles the whistle-blower or a restoration agent to a declare of success charge and the fee is often effected by the Federal Ministry of Finance and never the Office of the Attorney-General of the Federation.
“The position of the Office of the Attorney-General in essence is solely that of processing the above-listed paperwork to the Ministry of Finance which is the ministry saddled with the accountability of effecting fee’’.
Malami defined additional that restoration just isn’t about exposing the existence of sure property in an account presupposed to have belonged to an company of the federal government.
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“It is about establishing that the funds within the account are looted property or illegitimately warehoused and following that up with precise restoration and lodgment of the funds within the designated Asset restoration account by means of judicial and extrajudicial means.
“Entitlement to restoration charges is for all intent and functions contingent on lodgment of the purported/uncovered property constituting the topic of restoration into the Federal Government Recovery designated Account.
“This account is maintained on the occasion of the President on the Central Bank of Nigeria and the main points of the account are contained within the engagement letter.
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“The agreed remuneration shall turn into due and payable to the whistle-blower inside thirty (30) days of the receipt of the recovered/looted funds by the Federal Government of Nigeria and fee shall be made to the designated/nominated account offered in writing by the whistle-blower’’.
Malami suggested that if the whistleblower within the circumstances of this case feels strongly that there’s any declare of flawed doing related to the alleged declare regarding restoration course of, the whistle-blower ought to contemplate lodging a criticism with the related establishments of his alternative for the matter to be correctly investigated and or contemplate a judicial redress within the different.
“The declare by the whistle-blower, as printed by the newspaper, that the Office of the Attorney-General of the Federal cajoled them into signing of an settlement forfeiting sixty p.c of the whistle-blower charges quantities to legal allegation which the whistle-blower is inspired to lodge a criticism about earlier than the suitable legislation enforcement companies for full-scale investigation’’.
Vanguard News Nigeria.