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SERAP Faults Jonathan’s Statement On Corruption At World Economic Forum

Nigeria President Goodluck Jonathan

Ayo Balogun, Lagos

The Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) has faulted President Goodluck Jonathan over his statement yesterday at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland to the effect that corruption was not the cause of all the problems confronting Africa.

Nigeria President Goodluck Jonathan

Nigeria President Goodluck Jonathan

The president had said that, “In terms of security, Boko Haram is the biggest challenge we have at the moment.”

In response, SERAP in a statement on Thursday signed by its Executive Director, Adetokunbo Mumuni said that, “the statement by the president shows clearly that this government has not come to term with the reality of massive corruption at the highest level of government, and the devastation and suffering it has caused millions of innocent Nigerians.”

The organization said that, “the evidence of corruption and underdevelopment is staring this government in the face. Staying silent or simply wishing the problem away cannot be the way forward. What more will it take to convince the president that corruption is this country’s biggest problem, and that effective action is urgently required to end it, and address impunity of perpetrators?

“Hospitals without drugs, bad roads, poor electricity supply, contaminated and undrinkable water, collapsed educational system alone provide strong evidence of the devastation that missing $400 billion of public funds have done to this country. That this amount is missing has been confirmed by both theUnited Nations Office on Drugs and Crimes and House of Representatives reports,” the organization said.

The organization said that these indicators of bad governance and mismanagement of the country’s natural wealth and resources should serve as proof of the need for this government to put the fight against corruption at the very top of its agenda.

The group added that anyone with a simple knowledge of this country would know that the root cause of insecurity and Boko Haram was the decades of corruption and impunity of perpetrators, and failure of successive governments to provide quality education to Nigerian children, saying that the damage that corruption had done to this country is nearly impossible to describe.

“What millions of suffering Nigerians need from this government is a clear commitment to recover the over $400 billion missing public funds and to spend this to achieve sustainable development and respect for basic socio-economic rights of Nigerians,” it stated.

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