2023: ANEEJ urges Nigerians to shun disaster of corruption
BY: Femi Mustapha
Ahead of the 2023 general election, Africa Network for Environment and Economic Justice (ANEEJ) has urged Political parties and Nigerians to shun the disaster of corruption, embrace honesty and unite to build a great country, because integrity and trustworthiness are vital attributes for success.
The Deputy Executive Director of ANEEJ, Mr. Leo Atakpu asserted this during a one Day Town Hall Meeting held in Abuja on 21 December, 2021
to secure the Commitments of Political Parties for the 2023 General elections.
The program was part of the Strengthening Civic Advocacy and Local Engagement (SCALE) project, which Palladium is currently implementing with support from USAID.
Welcoming the participants Mr. Atakpu said the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) recently revealed that 133 million Nigerians live in multi-dimensional poverty and recent Index reported by Transparency International put Nigeria as the 154 least corrupt nations out of 180 countries.
This statistic he explained has put public Infrastructures such as power, roads as well as social services, particularly educational and health institutions in dire conditions necessitating an unprecedented upsurge in brain drain and jakpa syndrome.
He stressed that as the Country move inch towards another round of general elections and the commencement of campaigns, CSOs and Media have not heard sufficient conversations and commitments from the various political parties that are vying for the presidency and Governorship of the various states
The ANEEJ deputy Executive Director described corruption as a disaster that all Nigerians must be ready to wage war against.
He added that every corrupt act is not just a crime, but a crime against society and even children yet unborn.
” Naira continues to crash over the US Dollar as it sells at N775 for $1 at the parallel market in the month of November 2022 and N441.51 official rate.
” This has affected livelihoods and brought more persons in poverty.
“The rising debt profile of Nigeria is set to peak in 2022 and as it continues to spend a substantial percentage of her annual budget to service debt amid fresh borrowings as national development is being stifled.
“The Total Public Debt Stock, representing the Domestic and External Debt Stocks of the Federal Government of Nigeria, the 36 State Governments and the Federal Capital Territory, was N42.84tn ($103.31bn) as at June 30, 2022. The comparative figures for March 30, 2022, was N41.60tn ($100.07bn)
” As CSOs and critical stakeholders in the anti-corruption struggle, we decided to invite leaders of all political parties in Nigeria to this town hall meeting to use the opportunity to interact with Nigerians and tell Nigerians how they intend to fight corruption that is largely responsible for Nigeria’s underdevelopment of our beloved country.” He said
In his remarks the National Secretary Action Alliance Party Vernimbe James said his party is working towards developing a strategy that will reduce corruption via national salary.
Similarly Comrade Adejabi Peter of Labour Party said his Principal Mr. Peter Obi will ensure the right people occupied the right office and they are going to take a look at the Anti-corruption law in the country to make them effective.
In the same vein, the Deputy National Chairman Alliance People Movement (APM)
Mrs. Rose Said there must be strategically designed, issue-based campaigns in elections to reduce the influence of money politics that leads to corruption.
She thanks ANEEJ for prioritising anti-corruption and accountability issues towards the 2023 elections