…Says president has a stone heart in the war against corruption
From GODWIN TSA, Abuja
Senior Special Assistant on Public Affairs to the President, Dr. Doyin Okupe, has carpeted those blaming his principal for the unpleasant position the country occupies on the global corruption ladder. He said that President has exhibited strong political will in the fight against the menace than any other leader in the past.
The global corruption watchdog, Transparency International (TI), has ranked Nigeria as the world’s 35th most corrupt nation, sharing the position with Azerbaijan, Kenya, Nepal and Pakistan, The Corruption Perception Index 2012 released on Wednesday revealed that Nigeria scored 27 out of a maximum 100 marks to clinch the 139th position out of the 176 countries surveyed for the report. It was the verdict of the anti-corruption body that Nigeria has remained entrenched in corruption without making much progress to fight the menace.
This has attracted criticism from Nigerians particularly from the opposition parties scoring the Jonathan administration very low in the fight against corruption. Their position was derived from the monumental fuel subsidy scam to the massive corruption uncovered in pension administration as well as the fraud at the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Bureau of Public Enterprises. Many Nigerians have already rated the Federal government very low in the fight against corruption.
Reacting yesterday, Okupe, who faulted the methodology adopted by TI in arriving at its judgment, said the Jonathan administration has demonstrated stronger political will in the fight against corruption than past leaders. “Because President Jonathan is unearthing corruption and releasing figures as it was never done in the past, critics are now saying his regime is the most corrupt. But let me tell you that President Jonathan has developed a heart of stone to unearth corruption.
He is not a showman, but a reformer who has demonstrated enough political will to fight corruption and by next year, the Transparency international corruption index would rise because government is doing monumental things that never happened before. “President Jonathan is using different mechanism in the fight against corruption.
There are institutional structures put in place by the Jonathan administration to tackle corruption at the root and all sources of corruption have been blocked. Listing instances where the Jonathan‘s government is fighting graft, Okupe cited the prosecution of fraudsters implicated in the fuel subsidy scam, investigation into the pension fund scandal where monumental sums of money and properties have been recovered, the geometric auditing of Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) and curbing of corruption in the supply of fertilizer and seeds to farmers, electoral reforms, job creation, legal and judicial reforms, as commendable efforts by Government in tackling corruption.