Chuks Okocha and Kasim Sumaina in Abuja
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has said that the 2020 corruption index report on Nigeria by Transparency International has further confirmed that the administration of the President Muhammadu Buhari “is a citadel of corruption and the most corrupt in the history of our nation.”
The 2020 Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) released yesterday by TI in Abuja, shows that Nigeria recorded a decline.
Published exclusively in Nigeria by the Civil Society Legislative Advocacy Centre (CISLAC), the National Chapter of TI, the index reveals that Nigeria scored 25 out of 100 points, falling back by one point compared to last year.
In the comparison for this year, Nigeria ranks 149 out of 183 countries, three places down compared to 2019 results.
The Executive Director, CISLAC, Mr. Auwal Ibrahim Musa (Rafsanjani), while announcing the results, noted that in the past four years, Nigeria’s score has declined on average by 0.8 annually.
He noted that CPI aggregates data from eight different sources that provided perceptions by Nigeria’s business community and country experts on the level of corruption in the public sector.
Stating that while the index does not show specific incidences of corruption, “it is an indication of the perception of the Nigerian public about the state of corruption in the country. The index is completely impartial, objective and globally well respected,” Rafsajani said.
He observed that Nigeria’s CPI score is just another reminder of the need for a fast, transparent and robust response to the challenges posed by corruption to Nigeria.
He added that it is worrying that despite the numerous efforts by state actors on the war against corruption, Nigeria is still perceived by citizens and members of the international community as being corrupt.
He stressed that CISLAC/TI and partners suspect a list of key weaknesses to explain why Nigeria may not have improved in the fight against corruption.
While sighting absence of transparency in the Covid-19 pandemic response, nepotism in the public service appointments and promotions, lack of adequate anti-corruption legal frameworks and interference by politicians in the operation of law enforcement agencies among others, he said, “Going forward, we use this medium to call on the government and her supporters to examine the drivers behind Nigeria’s deteriorating anti-corruption image and consider actions which will tackle systemic corruption.
Reacting to the report, the PDP asserted that the TI report, “is an incontrovertible confirmation that our nation is more corrupt under President Buhari and the APC, than it was in 2015 when they took office”.
PDP’s National Publicity Secretary, Mr. Kola Ologbondiyan, said in a statement issued yesterday that the descent into the abyss of corruption only goes to show that President Buhari’s anti-corruption stance is a mere swindle used to delude Nigerians while the vaults were laid open for APC leaders and officials of the Buhari’s administration to plunder.
“Indeed, the record of unbroken decline from 136th in 2016 to 144th in 2018, 146th in 2019 and now 149th in 2020, under President Buhari, the African Union (AU) Anti-Corruption Champion,’ settles the now notorious fact that the Buhari administration and the APC are titleholders in corruption.
“Nigerians can now see what the APC and the Buhari Presidency did, upon assumption of office, was to simulate a holier than thou attitude, deploy the instrument of propaganda to deliberately castigate the PDP with false corruption allegations just to divert public attention and create a safe atmosphere for APC leaders to loot our nation to her knees.”