Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, on Thursday in Paris, France, said countries hosting global financial centres must become more accountable, if transparency of beneficial ownerships is to be enforced.
Speaking on anti-corruption and integrity at the global forum at the two-day anti-corruption and integrity forum of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), which opened in Paris, he challenged managers of the international banking systems to enforce more “stringent know-your-customer (KYC) rules on customer identity, source of wealth and country of origin.”
For him, “only a united global action has the power to reverse this, We respectfully urge that this power be exercised without delay.”
The Vice President lamented that the process of “tracing, freezing and return of stolen assets often proves to be exceptionally difficult for most African countries.
A “robust framework on repatriation of stolen assets, which ensures quick restitution to victim countries, is long overdue,” he added, noting the groundbreaking work of the panel headed by Thabo Mbeki, former President of South Africa, on illicit financial flows from Africa.
Beyond the panel’s work done on the African continent, Osinbajo called for international collaboration as “the most effective approach to apprehend, deter perpetrators & ensure restitution of stolen assets.
“We in Nigeria have seen just how difficult it is to get back stolen assets from the International financial system.
“Our recently-launched Whistleblower initiative has achieved great success and praise locally and internationally.
“Nigeria has ratified Treaty on ECOWAS Tax Administration Forum, for greater cooperation in exchange of Tax Information,” he added, urging the OECD nations to collaborative in ensuring transparency in financial transfers, and outlaw secrecy jurisdictions.