Nigeria ranked low for the second consecutive year in the Corruption Perception Index (CPI) compiled by the global anti-corruption watchdog, Transparency International (TI). In the latest index, Nigeria ranks 148

People Bishop Ken Obi

Nigeria ranked low for the second consecutive year in the Corruption Perception Index (CPI) compiled by the global anti-corruption watchdog, Transparency International (TI). In the latest index, Nigeria ranks 148 out of a total of 180 countries, 12 places down from the also mediocre 136 position in 2016. This report, coupled with several cases of insecurity in the country in the first two months of the year makes a mockery of the supposed performance of the government with regards to its supposed fight against corruption and defeat of the insurgents.

This fresh setback in the fight against corruption confirms that grand-corruption, political corruption, nepotism, favouritism and bribery persist in Nigeria at all levels. It is my view that Nigeria's recent dismal ranking by global anti-corruption watchdog, Transparency International (TI), is mainly a consequence of the inability to combat grand corruption and astronomical plundering of public coffers costing the Nigerian taxpayers around 25 percent of annual GDP. *

No doubt, the EFCC have recorded modest gains in the war against graft, especially the massive loot recoveries made by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC). Although these successes are commendable, there are other serious contradictions that have tended to undermine the progress that has been recorded. It is not only embarrassing, but very untenable that since the current administration has come to power on anti corruption ticket, no significant politically exposed person has been duly sentenced on anti-corruption charges.

What EFCC have done so far is to drag political elites on the faces of the newspaper pages without any major prosecution. This will certainly not give Buhari Government a pass mark on anti-graft war. The Transparency International is also not unaware about the corruption and abuse of power by those who manipulate their closeness to the corridors of power, without being held to account.

For most of the state governments, corruption is a huge business. In fact it is extremely dangerous to speak against graft in some of the states where corruption has become a salt of life. This is the more reason why retirees are owed as much as 24 months pension, and the workers’ salaries remained unpaid for between 8 months to 16 months despite huge bailout funds running into trillion Naira released the Federal Government. Therefore, so long this government has become a government of no penalty: it should not expect a certificate of merit from the global anti-corruption watchdog Transparency International.

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The essence of this evaluation is to come to terms with what is not working, with a view to making the necessary adjustments. In the context of the current anti-corruption crusade, there is no disputing the fact that a lot of enemies within the government are undermining efforts towards dealing a real blow to corruption. Government therefore has the lead role to play in ensuring that these adversaries of the anti-corruption crusade do not succeed.

Citizens for Righteousness and Social Justice is the Best way to Go. Raising Anti Corruption Crusaders fighting injustices in a Violent and Immoral Society
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