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FG Faults Report Of ISWAP Moving N18bn Through Nigerian Banks

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The Federal Government has faulted a report that the Islamic State in West African Province (ISWAP) fighters moved N18 billion through some banks and financial institutions in the country.

Naija News reports that the Nigerian Financial Intelligence Unit (NFIU) spokesman, Ahmed Dikko, gave the denial in a statement on Monday.

Dikko was reacting to the 2021 mutual evaluation report released on Sunday by the Inter-Governmental Action Group against Money Laundering in West Africa.

In the report, the body had alleged that ISWAP fighters generated about N18 billion from trading and taxing communities yearly in the Lake Chad region, tagging such funds as illicit.

The body established by ECOWAS to check the flow of illicit funds,  added that the Nigerian government failed to seize the assets of convicted terrorists as demanded in the global anti-money laundering and counter-terrorist financing regulations.

Reacting to the report, NFIU spokesman described the report released by the body as stale and irrelevant, adding that the report does not reflect current reality.

Dikko asserted that all funding of terrorism from all sections of the country is being evidently analysed and reported to all relevant authorities according to law.

He said: “It is to the knowledge of the international community, our populace and the formal media organisations that several arrests were made through the ongoing Operation Service Wide approved by President Muhammadu Buhari at the Defence Intelligence Agency (DIA).

“The exercise is continuing and far from over. In addition, all funding of violence from all sections of the country are being evidently analysed and reported to all relevant authorities according to law.

“It is true that recently Nigeria fell victim to illicit financial flows but overt and far-reaching efforts are being executed by the government to stem the bad practice.”

Dikko accused the body of releasing the stale report in order to justify putting Nigeria’s Financial System under an enhanced review process alongside other countries in the Sahel.

He added: “The ECOWAS body released its report to justify putting Nigeria’s Financial System under enhanced review process alongside other countries in the Sahel.

“We had formally faulted the report to the ECOWAS body while agreeing to partner with them to carry out further review processes to jointly attain global best practices on all countermeasures against local and cross border violent crimes disturbing entire West Africa presently.

“All our neighbours have proofs of our exchange of terrorist financial intelligence with the real-time.”



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