According to Business Day,
criticisms that the current administration’s anti- corruption fight is lopsided, President Muhammadu Buhari , Tuesday , defended his anti-corruption strategy, saying that it is not designed to witch hunt anyone.Critics believe however that the corruption fight has been targeted against members of the opposition only, claiming that those who defected to the All Progressive Congress ( APC) are being given soft landing.
Speaking at the official opening of the new head office building of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission ( EFCC) , the President described the edifice as ” another milestone in our determined and collective fight against corruption.”
“We never intended, and we are not engaged in witch-hunts, but we are determined within the laws to call people to account” he said
He noted that through out his journey in national service and since 2015, he has made a very conscious decision to pursue a vigorous fight against corruption in public life.
The President recall that significant progress has been made in the fight against corruption, adding that ” it is now known that corrupt officials will be held to account, no matter how long it takes”
“We have recovered and are still recovering trillions of Naira that were stolen in the past few years by people without conscience”
“We are pursuing recoveries everywhere and are making sure that anyone who has been found culpable is made to answer for his or her crime under the law”
The President expressed hopes that the judiciary, which is a critical stakeholder and partner in the war against corruption, would continue to collaborate with the Executive to bring corrupt people to book.
He also appealed to the Legislature to support the government in its efforts to rid the country of corruption
“Permit me to also seize this opportunity to call on the Legislature which provides the legal framework for the anti-corruption war to add more verve to the determination of government to rid our nation of the brazen corruption witnessed in recent years, through reviewing archaic provisions in our laws and proactive passage of new legislation.”
The President also appealed to Nigerians to CHANGE the ways of handling public trust, adding that “Corruption not only kills governments but destroys societies. It is the major reason why we are struggling with basic developmental issues that other comparable nations have long overcome.”
“War of corruption is not an easy one to fight, because it affects so many different branches of our lives, so much that some people do not even consider breaking trust is anymore a crime. It has become the norm. That is why we must fight this attitude and encourage Nigerians to CHANGE their attitudes and perspectives”
“It is for this reason that we appeal to Nigerians to support regulatory agencies like Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, because fighting corruption is everyone’s concern. I call on the Judiciary and the National Assembly to join hands in this national effort.
We are committed to working with our foreign friends to stop the inflow of stolen funds from Nigeria into their countries and recovering what is there already. These assets, when repatriated will be put to building our infrastructure.
Speaker of the House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara, in his speech, noted that the war against corruption cannot be won if the welfare of those fighting corruption are neglected
He commended President Buhari for his doggedness in the fight against corruption but noted that ” there are millions of Nigerians who are not corrupt and equally committed to fighting corruption”
The Chairman of the EFCC in his opening remarks, assured of his preparedness to fight corruption adding that the new incentives will enhance the government resolve to win the corruption fight.