Top Nigerian Officials in US for Global UN Confab


By Tony Obiechina, Abuja

Foreign Affairs Minister, Geoffrey Onyeama; Executive Chairman, Federal Inland Revenue Service, FIRS, Tunde Fowler and Professor Bolaji Olufunmileyi Owasanoye Chariman, Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission, ICPC will join other egg-heads from other parts of the world for a  global conference on how to contain Illicit Financial Flows, IFF.
Maria Fernanda Espinosa President of the United Nations General Assembly who invited the trio to the event scheduled to kick off in New York, on Wednesday, said the High-level Meeting will focus on International Cooperation to Combat Illicit Financial Flows and Strengthen Good Practices on Asset Return.

Fowler who is also the first Vice Chairman of the United Nations Committee of Tax Experts will also be sharing the African perspective of IFF as he also the Chairman of the African Tax Administration’s Forum ATAF.
Maria said that the UN General Assembly in its resolutions 72/202 and 73/222, entitled “Promotion of international cooperation to combat lllicit Financial Flows and strengthen good practices on asset returns to foster sustainable development” mandated the UN General Assembly to hold the meeting.

Scheduled for the Trusteeship Council Chamber, United Nations Headquarters in New York, the meeting will kick off with an opening segment, two interactive panel discussions, a plenary segment for general discussion and a closing segment.

The two interactive panels will discuss these themes:Taking stock on achievements of contemporary efforts to combat IllicitFinancial Flows and moving on and a global architecture to combat illicit financial flows and strengthen recovery and return of illicit assets.
The High-level meeting is being organized to take stock of progress made and ways to address subsisting challenges to reduce Illicit Financial Flows and promote best practices in asset recovery and repatriation, as an important means to support the timely implementation of the 2030 Agenda, in cooperation with all relevant stakeholders.
Former South African President Thambo Mbeki met with Fowler, ICPC Chair, Head of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Presidency Officials, Officials of the Ministry of Justice and other Heads of Nigerian anti-corruption agencies last year in Abuja to review the African response to IFF and chat the way forward.
Mbeki headed the African Union High Level Panel (AUHLP) IFF review African  response and chart the way forward.
Fowler and other government officials made  presentations at the conference, while the West African Union of Tax Institutes, as well as the Chartered Institute of Taxation of Nigeria, CITN had held conferences on how to combat the scourge of IFF.

On the continent, Nigeria has been prominent in the fight against the illegal repatriation of funds/profits by multinationals through involvement in several initiatives such as a high-level representation on ATAF’s Cross Border Taxation Committee, whose activities have impacted significantly on the discourse on IFFs globally.
The FIRS in partnership with the Presidential Advisory Committee on Against Corruption (PACAC) and the EFCC have organised two high level events for the recovery of illegal proceeds of tax evasion.
Abiodun Aina, Coordinating Director, Domestic Taxes Group and Special Advisor the Executive Chairman is also attending the conference.ReplyForward

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