President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), has said corruption is present at many levels of government and everywhere describing it as ‘sad reality confronting us (the country)’.
The president said this through his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, while receiving the report of the Justice Ayo Salami (retd.)-led Judicial Commission of Inquiry on the Investigation of the suspended acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Ibrahim Magu.
The statement titled “President Buhari: I want Nigeria to be counted among countries that do not tolerate but fight corruption”.
Buhari said, “The sad reality confronting us as a people is that there is corruption almost everywhere; at many levels of government, and nearly every stratum of our society. Mindful of the threat that corruption poses to us as a nation, this administration has specifically focused on the fight against corruption.
“As a government, and in furtherance of our anti-corruption programme, we have since inception engaged in many reforms in removing corruption including but not limited to the enforcement of Treasury Single Account, strict implementation of the Bank Verification Number Policy and signing unto the Open Government Partnership. A lot of efforts have gone into building and development of our anti-corruption institutions.
“We have so far kept faith with our promise and shall remain committed until Nigeria triumphs over the evil of corruption, attain a prosperous economic status, and surmounts her security challenges.
“However, the stark reality of widespread corruption becomes poignant when allegations of corruption touch on the leadership of an institution set up by law to coordinate and enforce all economic and financial crimes. It is an abomination that strikes at the root and undermines the Government’s anti-corruption programme.
“It was in response to the serious allegations against the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission that I set up a Panel headed by the Honourable Justice Isa Ayo Salami, retired President of the Court of Appeal, via an Instrument dated 3rd July 2020 pursuant to the Tribunals of Inquiry Act (Cap T21, LFN, 2004).
“We recognise that there are more grounds to cover in the war against corruption, and we are prepared to go out to possess those lands by cutting off any stream that nourishes the seed of corruption and supports its growth.
“Let it be known that in the fight against corruption, no one is too big to tackle, as no individual is bigger than the Nigerian State!”
The President added that his desire is to make Nigeria a country that has no tolerance for corruption and one where the menace is vigorously battled.
“Corruption is present in all countries. Some governments treat it with levity. Some fight it all the time. I want Nigeria to be counted among those countries that do not tolerate but fight corruption,” he said.