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Nigerian VP: $15 Billion Stolen in Fraudulent Arms Deals


FILE- Nigeria Vice President Yemi Osinbajo attend the investiture ceremony for the new president of the African Development Bank (AfDB) Akinwumi Adesina, on Sept. 1, 2015, in Abidjan.

Nigeria's vice president says the previous government stole some $15 billion of public money through fraudulent arms deals.

Vice President Yemi Osinbajo said Tuesday the money was lost to "corrupt practices in... security equipment spending" during the administration of former president Goodluck Jonathan.

Current President Muhammadu Buhari won last year's election on promises to confront the chronic corruption problems. Buhari has said that theft during Jonathan's administration left government coffers "virtually empty."

Since taking office in May, a number of former officials have been arrested on corruption charges, including former national security adviser Sambo Dusuki.

In January, Nigeria's information minister said 55 government officials and businessmen were responsible for stealing $6.7 billion in public funds between 2006 and 2013.

Vice President Osinbajo said Tuesday that "no public officer can steal the resources of this country and expect to escape."