In a bid to strengthen the fight against corruption, the federal government and The Russian Federation has signed a treaty on Mutual Legal Assistance in Criminal Matters.
A statement from from Nigeria’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs said said the measure was part of moves to consolidate on the ongoing war against corruption.
“Nigeria would benefit from this agreement as it would not only afford the country the opportunity to request for the arrest, surrender, investigation and prosecution of all persons who may have committed crimes and escape to The Russian Federation, but will be assured of the Russian cooperation in the tracing, recovery and repatriation of the stolen assets, the statement quoted Abubakar Malami as saying.
The Treaty, which was signed on the 27th November, 2018, in Moscow, Russia was negotiated in 2009 and aimed at enhancing collaboration and cooperation between Russia and Nigeria in the administration of criminal justice.
Nigeria’s attorney general of the Federation and minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami signed on behalf of Nigeria, while the acting minister of Justice of the Russian Federation, Mr Oleg Anatoyevich Plokhoy signed on behalf of the Russian Federation.
The statement further explained that, “It is important to note that, the Treaty on Legal Assistance in Criminal Matter is aimed at providing the necessary mechanism for cooperation in the fight against crime and criminal related matters, including terrorism, as well as to counter every form of support to terrorism.
“Therefore, this agreement, as it stands would assist in the fight against corruption as it makes provision for the tracing, recovery, forfeiture or confiscation of stolen assets, as well as the proceeds and instruments of crime.”
It reiterated that the signing of the Treaty is a major breakthrough in the Bilateral Relations between Nigeria and Russia and the beginning of greater cooperation and partnership in other sectors.