FG moves to create agency for crime proceeds

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By Terhemba Daka, Abuja

Economy doing better than projected, says Ahmed
The Federal Government has approved the Proceeds of Crime Recovery and Management Agency Bill to be transmitted to the National Assembly for legislative sanction.

Minister of Justice and Attorney General of the Federation (AGF), Abubakar Malami, disclosed this to State House correspondents yesterday after a virtual Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting presided over by President Muhammadu Buhari at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.

He explained that the bill was intended to have in place a legal and institutional framework because, previously, proceeds of crime were scattered in different and multiple agencies.

“The Federal Ministry of Justice presented a council memo today. The council memo is about a bill, which seeks the approval of the council to transmit to the National Assembly for passage. It is a Proceeds of Crime Recovery and Management Agency Bill.

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“And the institutional component of it is to have an agency that will be saddled with the responsibility of managing the assets that constitute the proceeds of crime in Nigeria.

“What happens before now is that the proceeds of crime were scattered all over, and mostly in the hands of different and multiple agencies of government, inclusive of the police, Department of State Services (DSS), Economic and Financial crimes Commission (EFCC) and Independent Corrupt Practices and other related offences Commission (ICPC),” he said.

Malami added that the new law would move the fight against corruption to the next level of transparency, accountability and, in essence, have in place an agency of government exclusively responsible for anything proceeds of crime.
FEC also approved a new national policy on occupational safety and health, tagged ‘National Policy on Occupational Safety 2020’.

Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr. Chris Ngige, who joined to brief the newsmen, added that the new policy was aimed at ensuring the safety of workers at their work places across the country.

Ngige said the policy derived from provisions of the constitution and the International Labour Organisation’s (ILO) convention. On her part, Minster of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Mrs. Zainab Ahmed, said the country’s economy was better than expected, going by the report released by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS). She said measures were being put in place by the authorities to stabilise the economy despite the disruption caused by COVID-19.

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