Buhari Expresses Anger at Corruption in Anti-Corruption Agencies

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Before They Cripple, Fight Against Corruption, Bala Ibrahim
Justice Ayo Salami presents his panel's report to the president

Buhari Expresses Anger at Corruption in Anti-Corruption Agencies

Justice Ayo Salami’s Judicial Commission of Inquiry on Friday submitted its report to President Muhammadu Buhari, who expressed anger at the way anti-corruption agencies are enmeshed in corruption allegations.

The committee recommended that the government should abide by the provisions of the EFCC Establishment Act of 2004 in the appointing the commission’s chairman.

The Act provided that EFCC chairman should be picked from any law enforcement or security agencies in Nigeria, but only the police have so far been appointed to head the agency since its inception.

The report faulted the dominance of police officers as chairmen of the commission since inception, observing that the four chairmen of the EFCC have so far been chosen from the police.

The president had in July inaugurated the Judicial Commission of Inquiry into alleged abuse of office and mismanagement of federal government recovered assets and finances from May 2015 to May 2020, against the suspended Acting Chairman of the EFCC, Ibrahim Magu.

This followed allegations by the attorney-general of the federation, Abubakar Malami, of infractions against Magu.

President Buhari received the report and commended members of the committee for their services while lamenting the widespread of corruption in the country.

He noted with dismay that even government’s anti-corruption outfit had been mentioned in corruption allegation. He said the involvement or mention of the very organisation saddled with leading the anti-corruption crusade undermines all efforts to salvage the nation.

”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’, Buhari said.

He called on all stakeholders to promote the fight against corruption at their respective levels. He pledged that the fight against corruption was one that must be fought without fear or favour.

“The stark reality of widespread corruption becomes poignant when allegations of corruption touches 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 recognize 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.

 

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