The much talked about fight against corruption by the federal government may not have started yielding the desired result as Nigeria is ranked the 35th most corrupt country in the world, according to a 2012 report by Transparency International on global corruption.
The report released at 6 a.m. Wednesday, Nigeria scored 27 out of a maximum 100 marks to clinch the 139th position out of the 176 countries surveyed for the report. It shared that position with Azerbaijan, Kenya, Nepal and Pakistan. Countries such as Togo, Mali, Niger and Benin fared better than Nigeria.
It will be recalled that Nigeria placed 143rd in the 2011 ranking, making it the 37th most corrupt country. However, when compared with this year's result, It is difficult to say whether Nigeria has recorded any improvement because 182, six more than this year's, were ranked in 2011.
According to the report, this year's index ranks 176 countries/territories by their perceived levels of public sector corruption. The index draws on 13 surveys covering expert assessments and surveys of businesspeople.
The Corruption Perceptions Index is the leading indicator of public sector corruption, offering a yearly snapshot of the relative degree of the corruption problem by ranking countries from all over the globe.
TI described this year's report as an indication that "corruption is a major threat facing humanity. Corruption destroys lives and communities, and undermines countries and institutions. It generates popular anger that threatens to further destabilise societies and exacerbate violent conflicts."
The organization added, "Corruption translates into human suffering, with poor families being extorted for bribes to see doctors or to get access to clean drinking water. It leads to failure in the delivery of basic services like education or healthcare. It derails the building of essential infrastructure, as corrupt leaders skim funds."
It however, encouraged governments to integrate anti-corruption actions into all aspects of decision-making. "They must prioritise better rules on lobbying and political financing, make public spending and contracting more transparent, and make public bodies more accountable."