The Senate has approved and passed the Bill on Mutual Assistance in Criminal Matters between Nigeria and other Foreign States.
The executive bill presented to the Senate by President Muhammadu Buhari provides for the repeal of the Money Laundering Act of 2011 (as amended in 2012) to prohibit money laundering activities, expand the scope of money laundering offences, provide protection for employees of various institutions, provide appropriate penalties and other purposes.
In his comment after the passage of the Bill, Senate President, Dr. Abubakar Bukola Saraki, said: “This anti-money laundering legislation is a key component of President Muhammadu Buhari’s war on corruption agenda. This act will facilitate the needed cooperation with other states to prevent individuals from escaping prosecution by fleeing to another country.”
Under the passed Bill, the Nigerian government may request that any country where a money launderer is hiding out to aid in the prosecution of such person, or such person may even be prosecuted in accord with the law of the host country. Nigeria would also be able to supply the country with evidentiary support to aid a conviction.
“This is the kind of innovative and cooperative anti-corruption scheme that will truly discourage money laundering”, said Saraki. “I and my colleagues applaud the President’s creativity and determination to discourage this kind of corruption.”