News / Africa

    Nigeria Government Emphasizes Fight Against Graft

    FILE - Nigeria's President Muhammadu Buhari
    FILE - Nigeria's President Muhammadu Buhari
    Peter Clottey

    Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari will not shield from prosecution any cabinet minister or member of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) who commits financial malfeasance, Nigeria's information minister said Wednesday.

    But in a media chat — his first since coming into office in 2015 — Buhari maintained that none of his cabinet ministers are corrupt. He challenged Nigerians who have evidence of financial impropriety against any of his officials to present it.

    His statement came after the opposition People's Democratic Party (PDP) demanded an investigation into the alleged misuse of security funds by senior officials in the administration.

    Information minister Lai Mohammed dismissed suggestions that the government's fight against corruption targets only officials of the previous administration of former President Goodluck Jonathan. He says the government has empirical evidence against former officials suspected of embezzling public funds.

    "The truth of the matter is that General Buhari would not spare anybody, whether he is a member of the APC or not, who is proven or alleged to have been corrupt,” Mohammed said. “It is only natural that after 16 years in power, if there is going to be any probe today or there is going to be any fight against corruption, the most likely people would be those who had held the reins of power.

    "The government is going out with hard facts, documents of transactions, account numbers and how much has been paid into which account. This is what I call fighting corruption, not just mudslinging."

    Corruption fight stalled

    Nigerians have demanded Buhari ensure the publication of a list of former officials who have returned stolen funds. Mohammed confirmed that some former officials have returned stolen funds, but argued that publication of their names would undermine the fight against graft.

    "The percentage compared to those who are yet to do so and those that are being investigated is so negligible that it would be a bit premature right now to start publishing the names of those who have [brought their loot]," Mohammed said.

    "Secondly, as Mr. President explained … if a person has returned X amount of money and you publish that he has returned X amount of money, well, the next person would not want to return more than that. So for some strategic and security reasons, it is not prudent at this point in time to make public those who have returned [money] and how much they have brought back. But in the fullness of time, it would be done."

    Critics, however, say the fight against corruption appears to have stalled despite repeated promises from the administration to root out graft. Mohammed disagreed.

    "Before now, corruption was celebrated in Nigeria,” Mohammed said. “Before now, corrupt figures were role models [who] actually dictated the affairs of this country. But today, the entire thing has changed. For the first time, Nigerians are appreciating the fact that corruption is a bad thing and that it is not to be celebrated.”

    He says that in the coming year, Nigerians should expect a government that is honest and committed to improving their living conditions despite the challenges the country faces.

    You May Like

    US Leaders Who Served in Vietnam War Look Back and Ahead

    In New York Times opinion piece, Secretary of State John Kerry, Senator John McCain and former Senator Bob Kerrey say as US strengthens relations with Vietnam, it is important to remember lessons learned from war

    Trans-Adriatic Pipeline to Boost European Energy Security

    $4.5 billion-pipeline will become operational in 2020 and will deliver gas from Azerbaijan’s Shah Deniz II field to southern Italy

    Video California Celebration Showcases Local Wines, Balloons

    Annual festival showcases the region's harvested agriculture, fine wines and offers opportunities to experience the gentle breeze in a hot air balloon flight

    This forum has been closed.
    Comment Sorting
    Comments
         
    by: Anna Gune from: Juba South Sudan
    January 06, 2016 4:14 AM
    Wisdom makes a man more powerful.
    Knowledge gives a man strength. Get good advice before you start a war. To win, you must have many good advisors.

    By the Numbers

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Vietnamese-American Youth Optimistic About Obama's Visit to Vietnami
    X
    Elizabeth Lee
    May 22, 2016 6:04 AM
    U.S. President Barack Obama's visit to Vietnam later this month comes at a time when Vietnam is seeking stronger ties with the United States. Many Vietnamese Americans, especially the younger generation, are optimistic Obama’s trip will help further reconciliation between the two former foes. Elizabeth Lee has more from the community called "Little Saigon" located south of Los Angeles.
    Video

    Video Vietnamese-American Youth Optimistic About Obama's Visit to Vietnam

    U.S. President Barack Obama's visit to Vietnam later this month comes at a time when Vietnam is seeking stronger ties with the United States. Many Vietnamese Americans, especially the younger generation, are optimistic Obama’s trip will help further reconciliation between the two former foes. Elizabeth Lee has more from the community called "Little Saigon" located south of Los Angeles.
    Video

    Video First-generation, Afghan-American Student Sets Sights on Basketball Glory

    Their parents are immigrants to the United States. They are kids who live between two worlds -- their parents' homeland and the U.S. For many of them, they feel most "American" at school. It can be tricky balancing both worlds. In this report, produced by Beth Mendelson, Arash Arabasadi tells us about one Afghan-American student who seems to be coping -- one shot at a time.
    Video

    Video Newest US Citizens, Writing the Next Great Chapter

    While universities across the United States honor their newest graduates this Friday, many immigrants in downtown Manhattan are celebrating, too. One hundred of them, representing 31 countries across four continents, graduated as U.S. citizens, joining the ranks of 680,000 others every year in New York and cities around the country.
    Video

    Video Vietnam Sees Strong Economic Growth Despite Incomplete Reforms

    Vietnam has transformed its communist economy to become one of the world's fastest-growing nations. While the reforms are incomplete, multinational corporations see a profitable future in Vietnam and have made major investments -- as VOA's Jim Randle reports.
    Video

    Video Qatar Denies World Cup Corruption

    The head of Qatar’s organizing committee for the 2022 World Cup insists his country's bid to host the soccer tournament was completely clean, despite the corruption scandals that have rocked the sport’s governing body, FIFA. Hassan Al-Thawadi also said new laws would offer protection to migrants working on World Cup construction projects. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
    Video

    Video Infrastructure Funding Puts Cambodia on Front Line of International Politics

    When leaders of the world’s seven most developed economies meet in Japan next week, demands for infrastructure investment world wide will be high on the agenda. Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s push for “quality infrastructure investment” throughout Asia has been widely viewed as a counter to the rise of Chinese investment flooding into region.
    Video

    Video Democrats Fear Party Unity a Casualty in Clinton-Sanders Battle

    Democratic presidential front-runner Hillary Clinton claimed a narrow victory in Tuesday's Kentucky primary even as rival Bernie Sanders won in Oregon. Tensions between the two campaigns are rising, prompting fears that the party will have a difficult time unifying to face the presumptive Republican nominee, Donald Trump. VOA national correspondent Jim Malone has more from Washington.
    Video

    Video Portrait of a Transgender Marriage: Husband and Wife Navigate New Roles

    As controversy continues in North Carolina over the use of public bathrooms by transgender individuals, personal struggles with gender identity that were once secret are now coming to light. VOA’s Tina Trinh explored the ramifications for one couple as part of trans.formation, a series of stories on transgender issues.
    Video

    Video Amerikan Hero Flips Stereotype of Middle Eastern Character

    An Iranian American comedian is hoping to connect with American audiences through a film that inverts some of Hollywood's stereotypes about Middle Eastern characters. Sama Dizayee reports.
    Video

    Video Budding Young Inventors Tackle City's Problems with 3-D Printing

    Every city has problems, and local officials and politicians are often frustrated by their inability to solve them. But surprising solutions can come from unexpected places. Students in Baltimore. Maryland, took up the challenge to solve problems they identified in their city, and came up with projects and products to make a difference. VOA's June Soh has more on a digital fabrication competition primarily focused on 3-D design and printing. Carol Pearson narrates.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora