Nigeria’s President Muhammadu Buhari will be more determined to fight corruption, the Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed pledged. However, there is no evidence that progress has been made under his administration.
Backstory: Mohammed told Voice of America (VOA) in Washington D.C., that President Buhari will consolidate on the achievements recorded on the anti-corruption crusade. He is spending some time in DC to promote the successes of the President ahead of the start of his second term.
According to Mohammed, Corruption is one of the major causes of poverty and underdevelopment in Nigeria. He said:
- “It takes more than four years to clean a country endemic in corruption. However, it is on record that this administration has driven corruption under the carpet in four years.”
We have heard this before
- President Buhari’s current administration was also focused on eradicating corruption in Nigeria. However, in four years, contrary to what Mohammed has stated, we have seen that corruption indices in Nigeria have gotten worse. Nigeria’s corruption perception index is currently ranked 144 in the world, which reflects about eight places drop from 136 in 2016. The most recent report from Transparency International, the index makers reveal that there has been no progress.
- The President himself has attested to the fact that government officials are diverting public funds despite his administration’s efforts at fighting corruption.
- His alliance with several corrupt politicians who are undergoing trials, during the recent elections undermine his public stance. A mainstream newspaper listed eight central figures in his re-election campaign alleged to have looted about 232 billion Naira.
Why it doesn’t matter: Unless President Buhari’s next administration is promising to do things differently, then this continued fight against corruption does not matter. As data shows, the current anti-corruption efforts have essentially failed, and there is no sign in the sky that this time will be different.