By Sabiu Abdullahi
France has announced its decision to return a total of $150 million that was stolen by the former Head of State, the late General Sani Abacha, back to Nigeria.
Mrs. Catherine Colonna, Minister of Europe and Foreign Affairs of the French Republic, made this announcement during a press briefing in Abuja on Friday.
During the briefing, Mrs Colonna revealed that the fund would be returned to Nigeria in the form of a grant.
She stated, “France will return to Nigeria the assets stolen from the Nigerian people by General Sani Abacha and his family, that have been frozen in France since 2021.”
She further mentioned that discussions would be initiated with the Nigerian government to allocate these funds to development projects that would benefit the population, in alignment with the priorities of the Nigerian government.
Mrs Colonna, who was in Nigeria to meet with the new government, emphasized France’s commitment to strengthen cooperation with Nigeria in various sectors.
She highlighted the economic partnership between the two countries, mentioning that more than 100 French companies are actively operating in Nigeria, creating jobs, establishing factories, farms, and vocational training centers.
Furthermore, Mrs Colonna shared France’s goal of increasing investments in Nigeria and promoting reciprocal investments by Nigerian companies in France.