EFCC boss, Bawa, Accuses Real Estate Businesses Of Supporting Money Laundering

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Real Estate business in Africa’s largest economy, Nigeria, has been linked to money laundering by the Chairman of anti-graft agency, Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Abdulrasheed Bawa.

According to Bawa, the easiest place for money launderers to carry out their activities is the real estate sector. He made this known during the visit of Nigerian Institution of Estate Surveyors Valuers (NIESV) members on Thursday.

He explained his reason for such conclusion with revelation of an investigation carried out on a retired civil servant, who was discovered to have laundered money by building a university in the Northern region of Nigeria, Kano.

Bawa said in line with the Money Laundering Prevention and Prohibition Act (2022), members of the Nigerian Institution of Estate Surveyors Valuers should report suspicious transactions in the real estate market.

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“Just last month, we discovered a retired civil servant built a University in Kaduna and nobody, including your members, reported such transactions.” Bawa told NIESV president, Emmanuel Wike and his members.

‘’So, I’m still bold to say that the real estate sector is one of the easiest places for money launderers. That’s why we’re empowering SCUML (Special Control Unit Against Money Laundering), with all the necessary tools to enable us achieve our mandate, so whatever we are doing is backed by the law.” He concluded.

This is not the first time Bawa will accuse the real estate business of aiding or being the haven of money laundering. In June 2021, the anti-graft boss revealed that EFCC will be investigating the sector in Lagos, Abuja and Rivers State, “That is an avenue that we have identified as an area where they are hiding money.”

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He said the level of corruption in the reat estate is the reason cost of housing is rising. According to him, 90 percent of money laundering on EFCC records is done in the real estate market.

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