South Africa Ready To Return Seized $15M, Sell Arms To Nigeria – Ambassador

The South African Ambassador to Nigeria, Lulu Mnguni, has said that the South African government is ready to return the $9.3 million and $5.7 million totalling $15 million meant for arms purchase it seized from Nigeria, but insisted due process must be followed.

Mnguni said in a television news programme in Abuja on Tuesday night that South Africa was willing to talk to Nigeria in order to resolve the impasse cause by the seizure of the funds.

The step is expected to put to rest the controversy in and outside the country surrounding the seizures.

South African operatives had confiscated $9.3m in three suitcases on September 5, 2014 at Lanseria International Airport, Johannesburg, in a private jet which flew in from Nigeria, accusing the occupants of attempting to smuggle the undeclared cash.



    While the controversy on the proprietary of the botched transaction was going on, the South African authorities seized another $5.7m belonging to Nigeria also for arms purchase.

    “Well, obviously we also in South Africa don’t want to keep Nigeria’s money, but we want to follow due process to address it. It’s their money and so they would like to have their money back,” Mnguni explained.

    He also said that his country was willing to sell arms to Nigeria in order to contain the Boko Haram insurgency facing in the country, adding that South Africa was a long-time supplier of arms to Nigeria.

    “We’ve been selling arms to Nigeria for many years, so we don’t have a problem. Why should we not sell arms to Nigeria? If Nigeria needs arms to protect its citizens and its peoples, so we have to assist them,” he added.

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