By Harris Emmanuel
UYO—AN international donor agency, ActionAid Nigeria has attributed the rising wave of insecurity in Nigeria to corruption which has pervaded every strata of the nation.
Its Country Director, Ene Obi, stated this at a “Stakeholders’ Dialogue on enhancing participation in the Fight against Corruption” organised by Action Aid In Nigeria in collaboration with Policy Alert, held in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State.
According to her, corruption has destroyed the fabric of the nation as she called for concerted efforts to be adopted to tackle it.
She said, “The citizens that are supposed to take the responsibility to fight are not there. The citizens need to hold government accountable. And the President should hold the governors accountable for what is happening in their states and not use selective measures.
“We have well equipped citizens. So, we need to strengthen the institutions, but first we need to deal with the citizens. We need to call ourselves to order. Each citizen needs to have a rethink because this is the only country that we have and to challenge those who are in leadership now that they are failure to their generation.”
A human rights lawyer, Inibehe Effiong while presenting a paper, accused the anti-graft agencies of politicising the fight against corruption as such they cannot tackle the menace.
According to him, the anti-graft agencies and both federal and state governments have been very selective in the fight against corruption and have completely shut their eyes to corrupt people.
“The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Independent Corrupt Practices Commission, ICPC, have been politicised. They have become openly selective in their unserious fight against corruption. People in this government have been accused of corruption but what have the anti-graft agencies done?
“While the current Federal Government continues to shout about the fight against corruption, we have seen how individuals with active corruption cases are being rewarded with ministerial appointments.”
He wondered why ICPC could not invite for questioning or arrest those prominent politicians with proven corruption cases pending against them.
In his remarks, the state Commissioner of ICPC, Mr. Shola Shodipe, urged people in the state to join hands in the fight and avail the commission of intelligence to track down corrupt politicians.
He alleged that the state government has been making desperate efforts to get injunction to restrain both the EFCC and ICPC from investigating financial activities of the state government both past and present.
“Akwa Ibom State Government has gone to court to tie our hands. The little efforts we have made to investigate where charged with contempt of court. We are handicapped” Shodipe lamented.