For Nigeria to successfully win the war against corruption, all sectors must collaborate better in a bid to end the menace that has hindered the country from making progress and becoming a greater nation that would be the envy of Africa and the world.
President Muhammadu Buhari made the assertion yesterday while restating his administration’s commitment to end corruption in the country.
He, therefore, sought a stronger collaboration among all tiers of government to tame the menace ravaging the country.
President Buhari spoke in Abuja at the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) second National Summit on Diminishing Corruption and launch of the National Ethics and Integrity Policy to mark the 20th anniversary of its establishment.
The Policy was put together by the ICPC, in collaboration with the Office of the Secretary to Government of the Federation (SGF) and the National Orientation Agency (NOA).
The President also charged Nigerians to join the government in combating the menace and return the country to the values of honesty and integrity.
His words: “As military Head of State, I fought corruption headlong and held public officers who abused their offices or misused public funds to the account.”
I introduced the War Against Indiscipline (WAI), one of whose cardinal objectives was to promote ethical conduct, integrity, and hard work.
“In 1984, I recognised, as I do now that corruption poses a clear danger to Nigeria, so, we cannot relent in efforts to eradicate it in all its ramifications. As I have often reminded Nigerians that if we do not kill corruption, corruption will kill Nigeria.
“Also in my inaugural speech in 2015, I affirmed my administration’s determination to rebuild and reform the public service to become more effective and serviceable. I charged public servants to apply themselves with integrity to stabilise the system and solicited the cooperation of the legislature to maintain their brief of making laws and carrying out oversight functions.
“We must all join hands together to fight corruption and return to our traditional values of honesty and integrity. I hereby use the opportunity of this summit to launch the National Ethics and Integrity Policy as a fresh roadmap to return Nigeria to these critical national values.”
President Buhari, who underscored the significance of setting up the ICPC, further canvassed a reform of the country’s judiciary system so as add fillip to the fight against corruption.
Speaking to State House correspondents, President of the Senate, Ahmed Lawan, argued that when prosecution of indicted corrupt persons lingered too long, indicated that something was wrong and tacit support for graft.
He pointed out a judiciary that works to ensure that corruption cases were treated with dispatch would help in the fight against corruption.
Responding, Chief Justice of the Federation, Mohammed Tanko, stressed that the judiciary was ready to contribute its quota in the fight against corruption.