…says every arm of government involved in corruption
Acting President Yemi Osinbajo has outlined ways Nigeria can tackle the endemic corruption pervading the system.
He also disclosed that every arm of government is involved in this systemic and life threatening social anomaly called corruption.
Osinbajo spoke at the National Dialogue On Causes Of Corruption : The limitless ramifications of corruption at the Presidential Villa on Thursday.
He described corruption as an existential threat to Nigeria both as a nation and as an viable economic entity.
He stressed that there is no doubt whatsoever whether every one arm of government can excuse itself, every part or arm of the society can excuse itself.
“But the truth of the matter is that we all know that corruption in Nigeria is systemic. It doesn’t matter whether it is the Executive arm of government, the judiciary or the legislature, every arm of government is involved in this systemic and life threatening social anomaly called corruption. There’s no question at all. And it affects all segments of the society. It affects the religious, it affects agencies and civil society groups.
There’s no one in our nation that can say they are not in one way or the other, not necessarily being complicit but at least under some influence or the other of some of the implications of corruption.
“So, I think we should leave the finger pointing, because the finger pointing is unhelpful. What is important is that we recognise that there is a major problem here. “
“The truth of the matter is that there is nothing peculiar about the Nigerian citizen, or the Nigerian type. Corruption thrives where it is allowed to thrive and there are many societies that have found themselves in worse circumstances than Nigeria and have somehow managed to solve their problems” Osinbajo said.
He listed steps to solve the problem of corruption if the country adopt some of those best practices which include : ensure the integrity of the entire justice system. That the judges, lawyers, clerks etc are not corrupt. Everybody is involved. How judges are appointed. Not on man no man basis.
“Aside from the DSS investigation, there should be particular test and proper investigation of candidates to be appointed as judges. In some of the systems that we inherited, the UK system for instance there is a process of almost 17 different tests before you can become a judge of the High Court.
Others are “the second thing is to look at the general welfare of the judges (ie the general remuneration of judicial officers).
” any judge accused of any infraction must be investigated and prosecuted through the NJC to avoid political influence.
“ the Executive, Legislature and the judiciary must collaborate to ensure that they put in place models that will work.
He further explained that the issue really is not about whether the legislature is corrupt or the judiciary or the Executive but the truth of the matter is that Nigeria cannot survive the times of corruption and the problems associated with it, It’s impossible, we can’t.
He noted ;We must recognize that it is a problem that we must resolve. And if we don’t resolve it, it will hurt us very badly indeed as a nation just as is hurting us today.
“One of the things I wanted us to also take note of is what happens when corruption is fighting back. This one of the things that we are seeing today.
“When you are fighting corruption, everything is thrown back at you. First religion is used, ethnicity is used in order to undermine every fight against corruption. And is not peculiar to Nigeria. Anyone who tries to fight corruption will try to undermine the very fundamental of that whole programme of anti corruption.
He further stated that one of the things that is very frequently used is ethnicity saying “The truth is that you’ll always find those kinds of accusations. Those kinds of accusations will always be made and we must resist them. And we can only resist them by also ensuring that the systems that we put in place are fair and comply with the rule of law.
He lamented that there is a subversion of the press itself as everybody is on the social media adding that ” So, there is a suppression of the press. Practically everything can be said today to undermine the fight against corruption.
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