By Emeka Nwokocha
As Nigerians continue to react to the statement by the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, that the soon to be repatriated Ibori loot will be used for the construction of the second Niger Bridge, Abuja-Kano road, and Lagos-Ibadan expressway, the members of the Delta Economic, Literacy, Budget and Accountability for Good Governance (DELBAG), have called on the Federal Government of Nigeria to return 60% of the money to Delta State for infrastructural development of the state.
Members of DELBAG made the call on Friday 12 March, at a press briefing in Warri. Stating the stand of DELBAG on the Ibori loot, spokesperson of the NGO, Mr. Fred Nohwo, said, “as a Civil Society Organisation (CSO) and stakeholder of good governance, it is imperative to lend our voice to this trending and sensitive national issue, with a view to prevailing on the Federal Government to return 60% of the money to Delta State.
Continuing, Nohwo presented the demand of the group to the federal government of Nigeria as follows: “First and foremost, members of DELBAG commend the Federal Government of Nigeria, and the Government of the United kingdom for their collaboration to ensure successful repatriation of the Ibori loot.
“Second, we note that Ibori is a Deltan and resides in Delta State. Therefore, we passionately advocate that 60% of the repatriated loot should be returned to Delta State and used to provide requisite infrastructural development for the benefit of the people of Delta State.
“Third, we urge the Federal Government to as a matter of urgency, set up a special committee comprising all stakeholders, including the Federal Government, state Government, community leaders, and members of DELBAG that will ensure proper planning, execution, and monitoring of the projects that will be executed in the Delta State with the loot.
Nohwo continued, “we do hope the Federal Government will heed our request and take urgent steps to do the needful in the interest of the good people of Delta State.”
lt would be recalled that the UK had signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to return the sum of £4.2 million stolen by former Delta State Governor, James Ibori, to Nigeria.