Buhari has just signed an executive order to tackle corruption. Here’s what the new law really means.
On Thursday, July 5, President Muhammadu Buhari issued Executive Order No 6 of 2018.
Executive Order No 6 is another name for ‘Preservation of Suspicious Assets Connected With Corruption’.
What exactly will this executive order do?
1. If an allegedly corrupt person is on trial, this law will ensure that he isn’t able to sell off his assets–which at the time will be suspected to have been acquired through corrupt means.
Let's assume that Diezani Alison-Madueke is accused of corruption for instance. This law will ensure that she can't sell off her property in Banana Island or elsewhere to pay lawyers to defend her.
2. In even simpler terms, this means that alleged proceeds of corruption like property can’t be sold off to fund the person’s trial or bribe judges.
According to President Buhari: “Executive Order 6 will deprive alleged criminals of the proceeds of their illicit activities which can otherwise be employed to allure, pervert and/or intimidate the investigative and judicial processes”.
3. Executive Order 6 will also ensure that allegedly corrupt persons facing trial aren’t able to go to their banks to withdraw money that will be used to truncate the judicial process. In other words, their bank accounts will be frozen.
Essentially, what the president just did is make sure that persons standing trial for corruption aren’t able to use their loot to pervert justice.
4. Buhari sees this law as another breakthrough in his administration's goal to rid Nigeria of endemic corruption.
According to Buhari: “Like I have said many times, if Nigeria does not kill corruption, corruption will sooner-or later kill Nigeria.
“It has thus become necessary to re-kit and re-tool our arsenal to be able to effectively tackle corruption’s perilous counter-attack against the Nigerian state. Accordingly, the federal government of Nigeria has declared a national emergency to deal with that crisis.
“In this regard, the federal government of Nigeria in line with its anti-corruption strategy seeks to ensure that justice is not defeated or compromised by persons involved in a case or complaint of corruption.”
Buhari was elected president in 2015 on the back of a promise to rid Nigeria of widespread and entrenched corruption.