The ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) has done tremendously well on the fight against corruption and security but performed poorly when it comes to the economy, a Nigerian anti-corruption group said on Monday.
Mr. Debo Adeniran, Executive Chairman of the Centre for Anti-Corruption and Open Leadership, CACOL on the occasion of the 2-year anniversary of the President Muhammadu-led Federal government has asserted that beyond the gloomy economic situation in the country; the anti-corruption war has achieved unprecedented successes and security of lives and property has been improved upon remarkably.
“Without doubts, a profound and objective assessment of the last two years vis-à-vis government performance indicates that Nigeria as a country may not be where it should be, it is definitely not where it was prior to the electoral-quake which kicked the previous regime of corruption out of power in the 2015 general elections.” Adeniran said
“But for the 16 years of systematic despoliation of the country by the previous regimes of the erstwhile behemoth called the Peoples’ Democratic Party, PDP, and accompanying task of re-fixing an entity that been so voraciously and violently raped and abused, perhaps, the change the Nigerians vehemently yearned would have recorded greater success in terms of achievement.”
“The anti-corruption war is indeed the most shining achievements of the past 2 years and it is keeping the hope of a lot of Nigerians alive as they believe their country is treading on the right path in terms of ridding the society of the Frankenstein monster called corruption, a bane that has been the major albatross to social-economic development.”
“The truth is that the increased momentum of the anti-corruption battle since the ascension of Buhari to office has increased the heat in the kitchens of corruption in the country to a very highest of degrees of centigrade than all the hitherto attempts by past regimes. Equally, the heat has been cross cutting, that is, it has not left out any sector, arm of government, ethnic or religious group in the anti-corruption drive; instead the anti-corruption fight has been taken to the doorsteps of the high and mighty including members of the Executive, the Legislature and even the Judiciary.”
“The implementation of the Treasury Single Accounts, TSA policy has been able to block and plug hitherto existing holes of corruption in the system and thereby greatly nipping corrupt intentions and tendencies in their buds’ for the dual purpose of accountability and transparency in the public sector. The anti-corruption agencies have become more enlivened and re-energized since President Buhari came and this is because of his political will and zeal for fighting corruption. They have all become more proactive with the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission EFCC taking the lead under the leadership of Mr. Ibrahim Magu, the indefatigable and fearless anti-corruption icon with about 200 convictions of corruption criminals in its ‘kitty’ within the last 2 years.”
“The Department of State Security, DSS in October 2016 busted corrupt acts of scary and alarming proportions in the judiciary in a sting operation it carried which revealed the apparent rot in temple of justice among other shining achievements. The Independent Corrupt Practices and other related Offenses Commission, ICPC in last 2 years has filed 70 cases; secured 11 convictions from 1, 569 petitions, an unprecedented achievement in the history of its existence.”
“Apart from the N204, 888, 835, 727, 25 recovered via the efforts on the anti-corruption agencies; vehicles and properties of humongous values have been seized from corrupt elements. And recently recoveries of stashed cash (in various currencies) abandoned by rogues are being made because of the imminence of their apprehensions and because they are extremely desperate to evade justice based on the punitive that awaits them should they be judiciously prosecuted.”
Speaking on the challenges of the anti-corruption drive, the CACOL leader said, “there are issues that must be addressed if the pace of the anti-graft war will be sustained and improved upon. The lack of enabling laws, paucity of funds, inadequate manpower/personnel amongst many other factors encumber the anti-corruption drive. Agency rivalry promoted by corrupt political interests and mischief makers is also a challenge added with absence of training and re-training of personnel with commensurate emoluments.”
“Talking about security, it is self-evident that the tense atmosphere of insecurity that had enveloped the country for long has been greatly doused especially in the Northern East and South-South parts with peace rapidly returning to the erstwhile troubled communities. Other significant security related achievements include the release of 103 girls out 276 girls abducted from Chibok, Borno state in 2014 and the return of the militants from Niger Delta region to the dialogue table.”
In concluding, Adeniran, said, “fundamentally, we demand for the government to confront the skyrocketing increases in the cost of the very basic needs of life; from food to water, fuel to health services, dwindling income to the rapidly increasing unemployment and under-employment rate and etc. It is the socio-economic development of the country for the benefit of the majority of the people that must be focused upon and prioritized by government above the selfish interests of the largely extremely corrupt and wealthy political class.”
“The government must abandon its fixation on neo-liberal policies because they are basically anti-poor and pro-rich and the reality is that the policies have failed woefully in most of countries it has been practiced because they only further impoverished the people.”