Catholic Bishop of Sokoto Matthew Kukah urges Buhari to negotiate with treasury looters

CATHOLIC Bishop of Sokoto Diocese Mathew Kukah has advised the federal government to change its tactics in the anti-corruption fight against looters and enter into negotiations with the accused as a means of recovering the money they have stolen.


Since assuming office in 2015, President Muhammadu Buhari has made the fight against corruption his major priority. Consequently, dozens of members of the former Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) government have been charged to court and of late, there have been several high profile public figures sent to prison.


In many instances, however, the government has struggled to recover stolen monies and legal battles can at times be drawn out and expensive. Bishop Kukah subsequently advised that the government should negotiate with looters of the nation’s treasury in order to recover the stolen funds.


Speaking at the 30th Convocation Lecture of the University of Jos yesterday, Bishop Kukah explained that some countries had negotiated with corrupt officials to recover stolen funds and it worked for them. He thus called on the Nigerian government to adopt the same tactic in the hope that it will yield similar results.


Bishop Kukah said: “Fighting corruption as a whole is beyond just recovering stolen funds, although it is necessary to punish treasury looters and corrupt officials, to solve the whole problem would involve tackling it from the roots and that means the institutional framework. Investigate what they have stolen, then call them and negotiate how much of it can be recovered, while you put frameworks in place to holistically solve the problem.


“Corruption is not only a Nigerian thing. Former presidents of nations like America, France, Israel, South Africa, among others, have been removed due to corruption charges, yet, their countries are working.”