The Centre for Social Justice, Equity and Transparency, has rubbished the recent claim by the Transparency International that former Nigerian military chiefs stole as much as $15 billion through fraudulent arms procurement deals.
CESJET said TI has lowered its own image by “giving in to some dead brains who have taken over its duties,” maintaining that TI’s claim is a threat to global war against corruption.
The group was reacting to a 19-page report by the Civil Society Legislative Advocacy Centre (CISLAC) and Transparency International (TI) UK, that defence sector corruption has weakened Nigerian counterterrorism capacity and strengthened Boko Haram terrorists.
According to the report jointly presented by the Executive Director of CISLAC, Auwal Musa Rafsanjani and a Senior Legal Researcher at TI, Eva Marie Anderson, “Nigeria’s corrupt elites have profited from conflict; with oil prices at a record low, defence has provided new and lucrative opportunities for the country’s corrupt kleptocrats.”
But reacting to the claim, the Executive Secretary of CESJET, Isaac Ikpa noted witth dismay that the so called ‘missing’ 15 billion dollar is even more than the entire defence budget for years and wondered how someone could spend what he was not given.
Ikpa said after due diligence and investigation, the group has confirmed that the said money as defence budget or expenditure in 2015 didn’t even exist in the whole of defence spending in the year 2015 under Jonathan.
According to him, “The true intent of that report is to be seen in its recommendation for arms sales to Nigeria to be blocked. The other demands that appear punitive, like travel ban are icing meant to disguise the call for ban on weapon sales. It is no coincidence that this was what Amnesty International’s work in the past two years since the current administration came into office and appointed service chiefs that were able to show Boko Haram the taste of what a professional military can do.
“The Centre for Social Justice, Equity and Transparency (CESJET) totally rejects the report and its content in entirety. It is nothing but mischief on the run. We condemn in totality the attempt by Transparency International to weaponize the anti-corruption work and use it to strengthen terrorists. We therefore want Nigerians to be on alert.
“Nigerians must recognize that a new plot to destabilize Nigeria has been launched and is being driven by Transparency International as opposed to Amnesty International that we all know.
“The plan involves starving the military of the needed equipment to fight the terrorists while creating other conditions that will allow Boko Haram bring back its fighters that are on the run while recruiting new ones. The same set of people that helped Amnesty “International fabricate crooked reports are working on this project with Transparency International.
“The group is banking on its credential in anti-corruption field as something that will give Nigerians a false sense of assurance that it cannot be deployed for subversive activities that it is presently engaged in.”