ICPC Recovers N450bn Worth of Assets in Anti-Graft Drive

Asset recovery measures introduced by the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) have led to a total asset recovery worth N450.999 billion.

Also, cash amounting to N104.696 billion was recovered within the last four years.

Information pieced together showed that amongst the assets recovered were 67 vehicles, 103 plots of land, 690 buildings in various locations, 34 businesses, eight farms, 80 pieces of jewellery, 19 electronics, and 95 pieces of clothing comprising bags and accessories.

In the same vein, the anti-corruption agency, under its constituency and executive projects tracking initiative, identified projects valued at N433.400 billion.

The value of projects on contractors’ return to project sites amounted to N45.236 billion, while the value of completed projects after contractors returned to sites was N45,236 billion between 2019 and 2022.

The details of the commission’s recoveries were contained in its compendium covering 2019–2022.

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According to the report, the Commission’s fourth board (2019 -2022) strengthened its asset recovery and management of other assets including the Proceeds of Crime (Recovery and Management) Act, 2022 coupled with the instruction of innovations in the legal and institutional framework of recovery mandate.

It was further gathered that the enforcement mandate empowers the ICPC to investigate petitions received and to prosecute cases; where applicable, to recover proceeds of corruption crimes.

The Scorecard on Ethics and Integrity Compliance (EICS), which assesses the integrity and fidelity of public systems in the Ministries, Departments, and Agencies (MDAs) to mitigate abuses and corrupt practices, recorded a value of funds restrained across MDAs at N254.865 billion, with MDAs assessed on EICs 1,063 and EICS deployed to MDAs 1,350.

It could be recalled that the ICPC last year commenced the disposal of forfeited assets to the Federal Government in line with the Proceeds of Crime (Recovery and Management) Act (POCA), signed into law by former President Muhammadu Buhari on May 12, 2022.

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It followed with a bid opening to select auctioneers. ICPC’s outgoing Chairman, Professor Bolaji Owasanoye, had complained of the unregulated structure surrounding forfeited assets, which he noted often led to huge revenue losses that ultimately defeated the purpose of recovery.

Prof. Owasanoye had said that the Proceeds of Crime Act introduced a standardised procedure for the management and disposal of forfeited assets.

Accordingly, he set up a governing directorate and ensured that all processes were deliberated on and executed by professionals who were experts in relevant fields.

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