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Corruption eradication in Nigeria: an appraisal.


It is indisputable that some of the most important factors that perpetrate poverty in Nigeria are Nigerian ruling and business elite. Secondly, we may probably assert that the ruling elite also suffers leadership qualities. They lack in the kind of philosophical and ideological vision and orientation that is committed to developing 'a dream society'. They have no dream about a great satisfaction of immediate selfish gratification. They suddenly become rich through corrupt practices through the customs and excise, for men, it is therefore very important for us to look briefly at their nature of corruption in Nigeria.


Corruption is a social problem that has bothered many scholars. Ruzindana (1999) assert that corruption in Africa is a problem of routine deviation from established standard and norms by public officials and parties with whom they interact. He also identified the types of corruption in Africa which are Bribery, Private gain, Over-involving &other benefits to non-existent workers and pensioners (called ghost workers in Nigeria) The dishonest &illegal behavior exhibited especially by people in authority for their personal gain is corruption. According to the ICPC Act (section 2), corruption includes vices like bribery, fraud and other related offences. The said corruption as the abuse or misuse of power or position of trusts for personal or group benefit (monetary or otherwise). Deductively therefore corruption is any induced or uninduced behavior within a integrity, purpose, virtue and ethics for private end.

A panoramic analysis of the vice of corruption shows that it is the physical symptom of numerous difficulties within contemporary societies. Main while it is well planned and executed, it usually involves not one party but more than one party. It takes a form of an organized crime. At times, an organization can be established on corruption beget corruption. Gbenga (2008) then assert that corruption is contagious. According to perception index in 2004 of the TRANSPARENCY INTERNATIONAL, Nigeria was ranked 144th out of the 146 countries served beating Bangladesh and Haiti to the last position. An analysis of the anti-graft /anti-corruption Laws in Nigeria gives us a clear view of offences that can be described as corruption and punishment attached, corruption practices will continue in spite of the anti-graft corruption Laws because man in positions are confident that no action can be taken against them because corruption is something that supposedly take place in private. Nowadays, we have seen how the laws are between applied, particularly the EFCC. It is now drawing on the Nigerian public that the so-called private enterprise and the legislator are free from scrutiny, the governors claim to be immunity clause. Their personal assistance and the commissioners are however, not immune. Henceforth, president, to be hunted down by the EFCC under miscellaneous offences Act. The ganging up of legislators and counselor to extort money and other gratification is an act of corruption. Corruption is found in award of contract, promotion of staff, dispensation of justice and misuse of public offices, position and privileges, embezzlement of public fund, public books, publications, documents, valuable security and account. Corruption can be perfected that it becomes difficult to unfold. It can be systematic in nature and affect the whole life style of an organization or society.


According to John Locke he amplified this doctrine of separation of power where he indicated the danger of oppressive and arbitrary rule if the different function of government were exercised by a single person or institution , main while, these amplified doctrine of John Locke can then related to Nigerian government where corruption as eaten deep to. The growing cases of corruption Nigeria can be traced into people holding power within the Federal, State, Local government level.

The cases of corruption does not end only with people in government alone, also to people holding one post or the other in both private and public position and even also the traditional rulers.

Proverbially, corruption is any action undertaken by man with a view repeating where one has not sown. President Olusegun Obasanjo presented a bill to the national assembly on "the prohibition and punishment of bribery , corruption and other related offences bill of 1999", however in order to effectively commission has articulated what constitute corrupt practices and how those corrupt practice are precipitated. President Olusegun Obasanjo regime has certainly fired most critical shot at corruption in Nigeria in recent time "Two Federal Minister and the senate president lost their exalt position as result of the decisive shot of president Obasanjo in the first quarter of 2005. So at the Federal level and in high cannot be business as unusual in Nigeria is sinking fast into the minds of most Nigerians.

The unabated situation of corruption is however spread to also both the state and local government levels and as well as some decentralized centers of power and authority in peripheral corruption still striving.

According to Wendy Thomson (2004) he reports the then National Electric Power Authority (NEPA):

"There were powerful views on the problems of corruption.... you need tip them to get them to rectify a problem...., said one, while some people in the focus group thought transformer were being vandalized by NEPA officials to warrant either replacement or repair of the transformer."

Within the educational sector in Nigeria, especially from secondary to the university levels, corruption is very pervasive most of which is not in public glare. Based on my observation on these sector cases of pandemic situation of corruption, I discover some of the following forms of corruption:


* Parent are known to have used various unorthodox means to influence their children / wards admission into federal government secondary schools, commonly referred to as unity schools.

* High JAMB score, which is very critical for admission in to the university in Nigeria, syndicates now, route candidate to particular centers with the gain of cheating. It has also been observed relatedly that there are some expensive coaching centers now charge exorbitantly fees with the view of guarantying a minimum score of 300 in the candidate JAMB score, which is been orchestrated by coaching centers through aiding and abetting of cheating in JAMB examination with the connivance of JAMB officials.


Within the university system, lazy and incompetent student now result to sorting (finding ways of purchasing of high and unmerited mark from an unpatriotic lecturer in order to enhance grade in their final examination. And such student will then say they have gone into the university and having what they not work for. Lecturers and student print fake receipts, which they use in collecting school fees, and unsuspecting students some of whom are usually discovered by audit department.


* It has been alleged that some unscruplous officers rent out firearms to armed robbers for a few which latter use to harass the public and engage in highway robberies.

* The police are also alleged to be collecting an unauthorized fee before granting any bill to any arrested suspect.

* Police force while on routine traffic control the police is also known to be collecting a graduated illegal charge on all operators of inter and intra city which exist within tax officials are alleged to be using two types of receipt to collect government revenue. Once of the receipt is said to be the original and hence genuine while the second is usually a fake on for the collectors private use thus depriving government of its legitimate revenue. (CUBBLED FROM I.B BELLOFMMAN (2005))


The familiarization with political philosophy confirms innate tendency humankind. Once you give a free reign, unchecked unbridled and uncontrolled, the bestalility of the man comes to the fore.

According to Thomas Hobbes, he said and I quote that "has it that life becomes solitary, nasty, and brutish and short. Our previous colonial background has been identified by scholars. Our colonial heritage has in sound ways altered our values and perception of morality; some of the causes of corruption are as follows:

* Trade Restriction: This is government induced source of rent a seeking /corruption. these issue of restriction on importation of foreign automobiles that can be imported within one year under vivid examples of how government officials and politicians could make quick

* Money via rent seeking/corruption. Main while, any country which tend to be less corrupt when the trade is relatively free of government restriction that corrupt officials can abuse.

* Government subsidies: when government its government allocates scares recourses to individuals and firms using legal criteria other than the ability or willingness to pay corruption are most likely to take place. Corruption can strive under industrial policies that allow poorly targeted subsidies to be appropriated by firms for which they are not intended. I then agree that subsides are available to industries, the higher the corruption index.

* Price control: the main purpose is to lower the price of some goods below its market value usually, for social and political reason, are also a source of corruption.

* Low wages in civil services: when public wages is low, public servant may be compelled to use official position to collect bribes as a way of making ends meet, particularly when expected cost of being caught is low citizen are less able to resist corruption.

* Sociological factors: muilti- ethic societies are more likely to be corrupt as they tend to favors non-quantifiable criteria like relation in determining "who gets what ,when and how "where family tie are very strong. Also prominent in the Nigerian cases are some unfortunate developments like the notion of big manism who is above the law , with numerous clients, retainers and hangers on the misplaced perception that government properly and hence could be plundered by the "lucky few and wrong perception of the inexhaustible "national cake" which every one strive to gain access to by all means


Many have noted the various effect of corruption on nation building which has lead to various developments. Most development scholars are agreed on the fact that one of the most intimidating times of corruption. Main while, these corruption has have advert affect to our social and economic development and also in building a veritable nation.

They are as follows:

* Diversion of development resources for private gain

* Limitation of and flow (1993-1998) Sanni Abacha of bad governance.

* Misallocation of talent

* Loss tax revenue

* Negative impact on quality of infrastructure and public services.

* Retardation of economic growth.

The extent of the loss corruption has brought on African countries in commonwealth meeting in London on June 12, 2002; it alleged that African countries have lost about 140 billion US dollars to corruption alone.


Before president olusegun Obasanjo regime police and some related agencies were the only on fighting corruption but when he came Obasanjo came in 1999, the economic financial crime commission and the independent corrupt practices and other related offences was then in place , they have seriously deal with the pandemic situation. Let's have an overview of the roles been played by EFFCC and ICPC fighting against corruption in Nigeria.

The independent corrupt practices and other related offences (ICPC). The ICPC is the apex body saddles by law with responsibility to fight corruption and other offences in Nigeria section 3(14) of the Act ensures the independence of the commission as it is not subject to the direction or control of any person or authority.

* Where reasonable ground exist for suspecting that any person has attempted to commit or has committed an offence under this act any other law prohibiting corruption to receive and investigate any report of conspiracy to commit, attempt to commit ot the commission to such offences.

* They are examine the practice systems and procedures of public bodies and where in the opinion of the commission, if such practices involves any form of fraud.

* To instruct, advice, and assist officers, agencies or parastatal on ways by which fraud or corruption may be eliminated.

* To advices heads of public bodies of any changes in practices , systems or procedures compatible with the effect discharge of the commission thinks fits to reduce the likelihood

* To educate the public on bribery, corruption and other related offences.


The economic financial crime commission enjoys a sort of collaborative assists from both the international agencies and local agencies.

* To investigate all financial crimes including advances fee frauds, money laundering, counterfeiting EST.

* To coordinating enforce all economic and financial crimes laws and enforcement functions conferred on any person.

* To adopt measures to identify, trace freeze, confiscate or size proceeds derived from terrorist activitists.

* To adopt measures which include coordinated, preventive and regulatory actions, introduction and maintenance of investigative and control techniques on the prevention of economic and financial crimes?

* To determine the extent of financial loss and such other wise losses by the government, private individuals or organizations.

* To collaborate with government bodies both within and outside Nigeria carrying on function wholly or in part analogous with those of the commission.

* To collect report relating to suspicious financial transactions, analyze and disseminate to all relevant government agencies and so on and so forth.

(Check the EFCC ACT: 2004 4-7b)

The roles of the law enforcement agencies can never be over emphasized they act basically to eradicate this pandemic situation of corruption in Nigeria


It is common knowledge that corruption is very prevalent in all sectors of our national life which practice is noted to be inhibitive of national growth and development. So in order to prevent corruption from happening at all, Nigerian should emphasis transparency, integrity and accountability in all their private and public transaction. There is a model called ACHANISM MODEL, the man achan in the scripture was avaricious (Joshua 7) and ran his race down. He was caught and his entire family was severely dealt with. His children whom they might have probably thought would inherent the proceeds of the illegal act where not make to live to do so. The solution is as follows:

* SOCIAL TRANSFORMATION: Nigerian society need transformation in education of the public is first and foremost a necessary factor in concretizing for social transformation in Nigeria. There is need for on-going formation and reformation, orientation and re-orientation of the minds and heart of Nigerians conscience is needed for them to begin to see that corruption are evils and are enemies of development of a country.

* THE ENFORCEMENT OF THE ANTI-CORRUPTION LAW: the law should be enforced to its fullest and without fear and favor.

* IMPROVEMENT OF SOCIO-POLITICAL AND ECONOMIC LIFE: this is another weapon against corruption in Nigeria .the multiplying effects of this improvement will reduce the tendency of public servant to demand and take bribe and get involved in other corrupt practices.


The high rate of corruption in Nigeria is systematic and in other to address the problem a systematic approach is needed and should involve everyone. To curb and eventually eradicate corruption, children, youth and adult need to be enriched with the "power of distinguishing right from wrong ". All schools return to the teaching of moral education in order to empower all our children with the spirit of stewardship while we adult live exemplary life's, reflecting truth, kindness, dignity of labour and integrity. Permit me to conclude with these popular Yoruba moral song on corruption.

1. Kini ni no fole se laye timo wa (2x) Laye ti mo wa kaka kin jale Kaka kin jale makuku deru. Kini ni no fole se laye timo wa.

2. Eni to jale adele ejo (2x) Adajo awa fewon si lese Fewon si lese bi olugbe Eni to jale Adele ejo

3. Aye ema fole segbe ti moni (2x) Egbe ti moni ewon ko sun won Ewon ko sun won fomoluwabi Aye ema fole segbe ti mo ni.

4. Oluwa ma fole segbe ti mo ni (2x) Egbe ti mo ni kaka kin jale Kaka kojale bo ba ku to Aye ema fole s'gbe ti mo ni.

5. Beni to jaleba Lola laye(2x) Balola laye kole rorun wo Kole rorun wo bolojo bade Beni to jale Balola laye.

The condition of peace of mind is contentment thirst for ease of mind. Get satisfaction be placed with what you have changed to grow and serve our nation for God's sake. Look to see the miseries and damages of graft. Listen today to learn and beautify your society


I.B Bello-Imam ;( 2005).The war against corruption in Nigeria; Prospect and problems. The Guardian newspaper (2005). EFCC;ICPC, record average performance, says "poll April 7 page 13

Olusegun Obasanjo; (1990). Inaugural Address entitled was a new dawn delivered on may 29.

Hassan A. Saliu, Ayodele, et al (2006). The National Question and Some Selected Topics issues in Nigeria.

Lai Olurode et al. Poverty, corruption, social policy and social development.

Haralambous and Horbon (2004). Themes and Perspectives in Sociology. 6th Ed.


Dr (Mrs.); E.A Ogunsanya; (2006). A paper presented on social implication of graft in Nigeria polity Christian, Muslim, and traditional belief (practical orientation) Isaac A. Olomolaiye;( 2006); Application of anti-graft act to the private sector:--Implication for management and ethics.

Ajayi, Vincent. (2006). Sociology of bribery and corruption in Nigerian society


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Author:Ayobami, Oyinlola Oluwagbemiga
Publication:Library Philosophy and Practice
Geographic Code:6NIGR
Date:Mar 1, 2011
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