Nigeria's Corruption Index Still In The Red-Zone - Transparency International
The Corruption Perception Index, CPI of Nigeria, dropped further in the latest report by international anti-corruption watch-dog, Transparency International, TI.
Nigeria dropped from a score of 27 to 26 on the index. On the scale, 0 means the highest level of corruption. 100 means none at all.
The report which was released on January 27, showed that despite much strong talk by the new administration to tackle corruption, the international community is yet unmoved by Nigeria's efforts and the country dropped one point further into the red zone.
In 2014 scored 27.
On May 29, 2015, Nigeria experienced a smooth and successful transition, from one democratically elected president to the other.
Upon taking the reins of power, then new President Muhammdu Buhari promised not to spare any corrupt individual. In his inaugural speech, he stressed this point, even to the local government level, saying: "while the Federal Government can not interfere in the details of its operations (Local Governments) it will ensure that the gross corruption at the local level is checked".
Several months on, the nation is yet to experience its first conviction for corruption, despite several arrests.
The media however, has been flooded with articles on corruption trials, with no end in sight.
Recently, Buhari complained about the judiciary, being his "main headache" in the fight against corruption.
“On the fight against corruption vis-à-vis the judiciary, Nigerians will be right to say that is my main headache for now." Buhari Said.
Legal practitioner, George Obah, insists the President had no right to query another arm of government for doing its job, saying "the lawyers if at all, not the judges should be blamed, as the law must take its course".
Comparing Nigeria to its closest neighbors, the country ranks 2nd worst, only above Chad.
From 2012 to 2015, Ghana scored 45, 46, 48 and 47, emerging the best from the W/African sub-region. Benin Republic scored 36, 36, 39, 37, Cameroun 26, 25, 27, 27, while Niger Republic scored 33, 34, 35, 34 in the same period.
Nigeria, just like other countries in the region, has battled disasters like Ebola, Lassa fever, terrorism and epileptic power supply.
TI reckons that the magnitudes of the various disasters are a reflection of corruption in the land, as scarce resources required to combat them, have either been diverted, or simply wasted by public office holders.
With over $20bn now expended since 1999, in the power sector, Nigeria still generates a little over 4000MW of power, which is already being threatened by militancy in the Niger Delta.
Since June 2015 when Buhari visited U.S President, Barack Obama, figures have been bandied about of Nigeria's commonwealth, looted by past public office holders. Almost a year on, none of the said funds have been repatriated back to the government's purse, to aid with combating the various ailments Nigeria suffers.
From Dasukigate (the probe on alleged diverted funds by the immediate past National Security Adviser, Sambo Dasuki) which has stopped just short of roping in all members of the past administration, to the Abacha loot, it is safe to say that there has been no concrete act of anti-corruption to give Nigeria a boost out of the red-zone.
It was discovered that the fmr NSA asked @cenbank to transfer $132m & €9.9m to Societe D’equipmente Internationaux, w/out any contract docs
— President Buhari (@NGRPresident) November 17, 2015
During his inauguration, Buhari said "My fellow Nigerians I can not recall when Nigeria enjoyed so much goodwill abroad as now.
"The messages I received from East and West, from powerful and small countries are indicative of international expectations on us."
These expectations appear to be fast eroding, with the latest TI report.