Nigeria’s Federal Government has reacted to Transparency International’s (TI) report which placed the country at 146 of the 180 countries on the 2019 corruption perception index.
After more than four years of anti-corruption campaign by the Buhari administration, Nigeria was ranked 146th out of the 180 countries surveyed by the group, one of the worst ranking in the last few years. Nigeria was 144th in 2018.
Nigeria’s score of 26 out of 100 points is below the global average of 43. In Africa, countries such as Botswana(61), Cape Verde(60), Rwanda(53), Namibia(52), Senegal(45), South Africa(44( and Tunisia(43) met the average. Benin(41) Ghana(41), Morocco(41), Burkina Faso(40), Lesotho(40), Ethiopia(37), Tanzania(37), Algeria and Egypt(35), Zambia(34), Sierra Leone(33), Niger(32), Malawi(31), Djibouti(30) and Guinea(29) are ranked higher than Nigeria.
Nigeria is ranked higher than Cameroon(25), CAR(25), Comoros(25), Zimbabwe(24), Madagascar(24), Eritrae(23), Chad(20), Equatorial Guinea(16), Guinea Bissau(18) and Somalia, the worst country in the world, with a score of 8 and ranking at 180th.
The CPI ranks 180 countries and territories by their perceived levels of public sector corruption, drawing on 13 expert assessments and surveys of business executives. It uses a scale of zero (highly corrupt) to 100 (very clean).
However, reacting to this development, the Attorney-General of the Federation (AGF) and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami said the facts on the ground did not correlate with the information dished out by Transparency International.
Speaking in an interview on Channels Television’s Lunch Time Politics, Malami said as far he is concerned “the empirical evidence” did not support Transparency International’s report.
The Attorney General said in terms of the government’s fight against corruption, more has been done.
“In terms of the fight against corruption, we have been doing more, we have done more and we will continue to do more out of inherent conviction and desire on our part to fight against corruption devoid of any extraneous considerations relating to the rating by Transparency International.
“Our resolve to fight corruption is inherent and indeed devoid of any extraneous considerations, we will continue to do more and we will double efforts,” he said.
Malami added that there was nothing that has not been done as a nation in the fight against corruption.
“In terms of legislation, we have done more, in terms of enforcement we have done more, in terms of recovery of looted assets we have done more, and in terms of political goodwill, we have demonstrated extra-ordinary political goodwill,” Malami stated.
Malami challenged Transparency International to provide indices and statistics from which the organisation adjudged that Nigeria is not doing enough in its fight against corruption, adding that for a conclusion to be legitimate, then there has to be specific facts and figures to establish a position.