SERAP Charges Tinubu to Probe Missing $3.4 Billion IMF Loan

SERAP logo and Tinubu

The Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) has called on Bola Tinubu to investigate the allegations that $3.4 billion loan obtained from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) is missing or diverted, and to prosecute the perpetrators and recover any missing funds.

SERAP, a non-governmental organization that promotes transparency and accountability in government and economic and social rights, made the call in a letter dated 3 February 2024 and signed by its deputy director Kolawole Oluwadare.

The letter was based on the 2020 annual audited report by the Auditor-General of the Federation, which revealed that there was no document to show the movement and spending of the IMF loan, which was meant to finance the budget and manage the health crisis stemming from the outbreak of COVID-19 pandemic.

SERAP said that the allegations of corruption in the spending of the IMF loan undermined the economic development of the country, trapped the majority of Nigerians in poverty and deprived them of opportunities.

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SERAP also said that the allegations suggested a grave violation of the public trust, the provisions of the Nigerian Constitution, the country’s anti-corruption legislation and international anti-corruption obligations, including under the UN Convention against Corruption.

It urged Tinubu to direct the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Mr Lateef Fagbemi, and appropriate anti-corruption agencies to promptly probe the allegations and ensure that anyone suspected to be responsible should face prosecution as appropriate, if there is sufficient admissible evidence, and any missing IMF loan should be fully recovered and returned to the public treasury.

SERAP also asked Tinubu to take the recommended measures within seven days of the receipt and/or publication of the letter, or face appropriate legal actions to compel his government to comply with the request in the public interest.

It stated, “Recommended measures are taken within 7 days of the receipt and/or publication of this letter. If we have not heard from you by then, SERAP shall consider appropriate legal actions to compel your government to comply with our request in the public interest.”