Nigeria has announced the existence of 96 secret financiers of terrorism across the country who are backing Boko Haram and the Islamic State of West Africa Province (ISWAP).
At a press conference in Abuja on Thursday, information and culture minister, Lai Mohammed said the discovery by the Nigerian Financial Intelligence Unit also involved 123 companies and 33 bureau de change operators linked with terrorism in the country, in addition to 26 suspected kidnappers and 7 co-conspirators.
the minister added, 45 people suspected of funding terrorism had been arrested and would soon be prosecuted.
Nigeria's financial crimes agency had recovered at least $750m (£550m) in local and foreign currency linked to corruption, the minister said.
- Prosecution of suspected terrorism sponsors ‘compromised’ -
Responding to the minister's revelation, a former commissioner of police, Emmanuel Ojukwu, claimed in an interview with a local TV station that Nigerian government officials have compromised the prosecution of terrorists in the country.
The former police spokesperson at the Force headquarters, Abuja, lamented that terrorists had brought enormous hardships on Nigerians.
He tagged the unnamed public officials benefitting from the security crises plaguing Nigeria as “disaster merchants who have compromised” the prosecution of suspected Boko Haram sponsors.
Last month, the Nigerian Securities and Exchange Commission increased the power of the authorities to monitor financial links with suspected jihadist groups.
President Muhammadu Buhari, now in his second term, was elected on a promise to fight corruption and recover huge sums of money stolen from Nigeria.