9 November 2017

Nigeria: Is the Anti-Corruption War Back On Track?

Although the current administration has come under a lot of criticism for its perceived lukewarm stance on high-profile official corruption, contrary to campaign promises and citizens' expectations, the recent sacking of the Secretary of the Government of the Federation (SGF) and the Director-General of the National Intelligence Agency (NIA) by the President appears to be sending a different positive response to official corruption. In your view, is the war against corruption in Nigeria back on track? What else should be done?

ABIMBOLA AKOSILE

* Yes, this anti-corruption war is still on track if only Nigerians are patient enough to enjoy the results of government and well-wishers in this sure direction. The looted pension funds, Ikoyi apartment discovery, $321 million loot from Switzerland, several other individual, groups, corporate etc, treasury loots both locally and in the Diaspora have put a lot of excesses in check so far. The economy has emerged out of recession therefrom. Obvious culprits are adjudged innocent until proven otherwise; hence all the frustrating delays. The panacea is genuine patience and unity.

- Miss Apeji Patience Eneyeme, Badagry, Lagos State

* Nope, the war is not back on track, I'm afraid! And, we don't need a war. What we need, in my view, is the entrenchment of a system that makes it difficult or impossible for corruption to thrive. Why should we be wasting resources on a fight without results, when we can put in place a system that works efficiently to discourage corrupt practices?

- Mr. Mike Utsaha, Legal Practitioner, Abuja

* The anti-corruption war is never back on track as far as this regime is concerned. Yes, the former SGF and the former NIA Director-General have been sacked, but why did it take PMB several months to do the right thing? Don't you think it was due to public pressure? In fact, left to PMB alone, nothing could have happened to them. From what is being said of his cabinet members, none of them is qualified to be there. All those who decamped from the PDP and are holding sensitive positions in the current regime are the worst corrupt Nigerians, but they are being shielded by the power of PMB, otherwise let a proper probe be instituted. Again, many Nigerians are hypocrites; they see the truth and refuse to say it. To some, it is to protect the image of their brothers; but nepotism is also corruption.

- Hon. Babale Maiungwa, U/Romi, Kaduna

* The real war died when former EFCC Chairman, Mallam Nuhu Ribadu was removed by the late President Umaru Musa Yar'Adua/Goodluck Jonathan administration. We never had it so good. The current Chairman, Magu should be given a free hand to operate. He's been awesome so far.

- Mr. Chnazor Megbolu, Lagos State

* The current administration has shown bold steps against corrupt officials. The best way is also to try and prosecute the high-profile officials that are corrupt, and work effectively with the judiciary, bankers, relevant ministries and organisations e.t.c. Government should develop a corruption template for monitoring and work with some Non-Governmental organisations to track the national budget. Develop a citizen report card for accountability, increase use of technology in tracking, and use theater, drama, sports, and slogans on radio and televisions to discourage people against corruption.

- Mr. Michael Adedotun Oke, Founder Michael Adedotun Oke Foundation, Apo, Abuja

* It is a welcome action taken by PMB to sack long awaited SGF and the NIA boss for corruption intake. This will be a lesson to other political leaders. When PMB said he is for everybody and for nobody, Nigerians thought he was just joking. Now his inaugural speech is playing up in his government over the corrupted appointees that engage in corruption. We must support this government for corruption fighting.

- Mr. Gordon Chika Nnorom, Public Commentator, Umukabia, Abia State

* Can a leopard change its skin? Curbing corruption in Nigeria will actually be effective if we start from the home front, rethink our values as a nation and mean it indeed by instituting corruption-free systems. We are all guilty for our shame and must fight to restore our nation back on track.

- Ms. Nkeiruka Abanna, Lagos State

* No, the promises made by them have been derailed. Are they actually on the right track? Many of his political appointees etc, may end up with the EFCC, ICPC, or in jail because they are already soiled with corruption. He should note the discordant voices around him; some of them are sycophants. Nigerians are asking silent questions on achievements and failures of this administration.

- Mr. Dogo Stephen, Kaduna State

* This anti-graft war is still very much on track as PMB never relented in his vow to totally exterminate corruption in Nigeria for our collective good. Complex as this task is, PMB won't intentionally step on innocent toes. A lot going on behind the scenes cannot be served raw to the eager public until properly concluded otherwise genuine cases could be unfortunately aborted or hijacked by selfish interests. We must be patient and more united now.

- Mr. Apeji Onesi, Lagos State

* For me, the status quo remains unchanged. It took almost six months to fire the SGF and we're yet to see the man brought to book. PMB the other day talked about expanding his cabinet, instead of simply replacing incompetent cabinet members. Is this not the same person that lampooned the GEJ administration regarding a bloated cabinet? I think PMB should just focus on arriving at 2019 with Nigeria not worse off than before.

- Mr. E. Iheanyi Chukwudi, B.A.R. Resources, Apo, Abuja

* Any fight against corruption, without recovery of loot, is for me not of much value. Even the few seizures and forfeitures we've had have not recovered anything close to what plea bargain convictions can provide. Outside plea bargaining convictions and a few measly fines, not a single kobo has been recovered from the concluded regular high profile corruption convictions in court since the return of democracy in 1999. We need to shift our focus more on loot recovery than anything else.

- Mr. Buga Dunj, Jos, Plateau State

* I don't believe this administration's war against corruption is back on track, as long as some of the cabinet members are viewed with suspicion on corrupt allegations. Although PMB has fired the SGF and DG NIA, it is obvious that he was under local and international pressure to act. Now, to really confirm his avowed war to end corruption, both former top government officials must be brought to court, tried, prosecuted, convicted and sentenced.

- Mr. Olumuyiwa Olorunsomo, Lagos State

THE FEEDBACK

Yes, it is back: 3

No, it is not back: 5

Others: 4

Radical tip: Jail the ex-SGF!

Total no of respondents: 12

Male: 10

Female: 2

Highest location: Lagos (5)

Next Week: Can Youths Truly Ensure Better Leadership?

Many citizens feel the current administration is full of elderly officials who are bereft of new ideas on governance and out of tune with contemporary global practices in governments. While France was identified as a positive example of what young, dynamic leadership can achieve, the leader of a Middle Belt State in Nigeria was also highlighted as a negative example of a brash, young and inexperienced leader in action. To you, is experience better than dynamism; and can youths truly ensure better leadership in Nigeria?

Please make your response direct, short and simple, and state your full name, title, organisation, and location. Responses should be sent between today (November 9 & Monday, November 13) to abimbolayi@yahoo.com, greatbimbo@gmail.com, AND abimbola.akosile@thisdaylive.com. Respondents can also send a short text message to 08023117639 and/or 08188361766 and/or 08114495306. Collated responses will be published on Thursday, November 16

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