Former President of the Court of Appeal and pioneer Chairman of the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related offences Commission, ICPC, Justice Mustapha Akanbi (retd) yesterday in Ilorin gave the President Goodluck Jonathan administration a hard knock over the manner it has handled the issue of corruption, saying the escalation of graft in all spheres of the nation’s economy is disturbing.
In his address at a public lecture on corruption, with the theme: “The bane of our society” organised by Amicus International Club of Ilorin, Justice Akanbi said people now accept bribes with impunity because nothing is being done about corruption.
His words: “The clouds have thickened, corruption is escalating and we cannot pretend. The Transparency International put us at the position of 136th corrupt nation. You cannot deny it even though it is a perception. Honestly, I do not see what is being done about corruption now.
“Speaking for myself, I ask this question: Does it mean all the governors are corruption-free, does it mean all the legislators are corruption-free; does it mean the judiciary is corruption-free? We know that it is happening but people are not being arrested, no action is being taken and the end result is that people accept bribes with impunity now.
“At least, if they had taken few people to court, we would have known that something is being done. There is a general lull and the fight against corruption has gone down completely. That is why we are gearing up the tempo now so that people can be aware of it.
”Now, when you look at many people wanting to be governors, is it because they want to serve their people or that they want to go and chop and chop? It is apparent that many of them want to enrich themselves because they know that when you go there you make money and become wealthy, which is the same as going to the legislature. Yet people are suffering, there is no development, there is corruption, kidnapping and the ills of the society have gone on the ascendancy.
“Honestly, look at these governors, how many of them have been arrested? We know about Oduahgate and the billions of naira that Sanusi alleged that was missing. The terrible thing is that the judiciary is not helping. Someone said he was alleged to have taken about N30 billion and he said it was N20 billion but was fined about N750 million by the judiciary.”