I’m Leaving Behind Legacy Of Fighting Corruption – Buhari
President Muhammadu Buhari on Thursday declared that he is leaving behind a legacy of fighting corruption in the country, stressing the need to sustain the fight against the menace for the benefit of present and future generations.
In his recorded remark to celebrate the African Day of Anti-Corruption, he said: “Our youths have no place to go and live with dignity but in Africa. As I am leaving office next year, I am proud to leave behind a legacy of fighting corruption among others.
“Personally, I abhor corruption and I will render my best in or out of the office to get rid of corruption in Nigeria and Africa in general. I urge our youths to join me in this noble cause.”
The President, who is the African Anti-Corruption Champion, called for the establishment of an International Anti-Corruption Court to try offenders while urging African leaders to intensify the fight against corruption and create more disincentives for the pilfering of public funds.
He praised African leaders for gains so far recorded, admonishing that efforts must be intensified to prosecute offenders and collect resources that had been stored in other countries.
A statement issued by Garba Shehu, Senior Special Assistant to the President (Media & Publicity), quoted the President as saying: “Distinguished participants and fellow African leaders, corruption is evil and all efforts at tackling it are desirable. I have monitored the fight against corruption in Africa and I can see both successes and drawbacks. The battle must continue for the sake of the continent and its people no matter the difficulties.
“In Nigeria, the fight against corruption has been vigorous since 2015. A lot has been achieved in the areas of arrest, prosecution, conviction, asset recovery and anti-corruption laws.
“I must admit that the fight has not been a bed of roses. Truly, a lot more work on many fronts is required. For example, civil and public servants must be ethical and professional at all times. The private sector must contribute to curbing corruption. The international community needs to close safe havens. The judiciary requires more impetus. Perhaps, an International Anti-corruption Criminal Court is needed.”
President Buhari said family and religious values will have to be upgraded, and schools have a lot of work to do for a better society.
He added: “I am extremely delighted to address the participants as we celebrate the Africa Day of Anti-Corruption. Distinguished participants, we have come a long way in the fight against corruption in Nigeria and Africa in general.
“May I use this opportunity to appreciate fellow African leaders for their individual and collective efforts in fighting corruption on our continent. I appreciate all of you for the confidence reposed in me being the Africa Champion on Anti-Corruption.
“I understand that the theme for 2022 is ‘Strategy and Mechanisms for the Transparent Management of Covid-19 Funds, Lessons from the Pandemic.’ In Nigeria, we responded to the COVID-19 Pandemic swiftly and having tamed it, we have realized the need for more awareness campaigns on health issues and more investment in the health sector. Again, service delivery requires checkmating corruption.”
The President told African leaders that “we must get rid of corruption in Africa if the continent is to realise its full potential.”