Nigeria receives $311 mln of Abacha assets from United States, Jersey -attorney general

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Nigeria has received more than $311 million of funds stolen from the country by former military ruler General Sani Abacha from the United States and the British dependency of Jersey, a statement from the African country’s attorney general said on Monday.

The United States and the British dependency of Jersey agreed with the Nigerian government in February to money that Abacha, who died in 1998, had stashed in their banks.

The repatriation agreement requires the money go towards infrastructure projects, and if any of the cash is diverted Nigeria could be required to replace it.

Abacha ruled Africa’s largest oil exporter from 1993 until his death in 1998. Corruption watchdog Transparency International estimates he stole as much as $5 billion of public money during that time, though he was never charged with corruption while he was alive.

Nigeria has been working with governments worldwide in to repatriate some of the cash and boost its finances. Endemic graft among the political elite dating back decades has left most Nigerians mired in poverty, despite the country being Africa’s biggest economy.

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