How to Fix Nigeria: Tackling Corruption
In May 2016, ahead of the London Anti-Corruption Summit, then PM David Cameron was caught on camera calling Nigeria ‘fantastically corrupt’. In response to this diplomatic gaffe, President Muhammadu Buhari granted that Cameron was ‘telling the truth’ based on a perception of Nigeria, but that his interest lay more in the return of stolen assets held in British banks.
From a domestic angle, there have been various major scandals in which several billions of dollars have been stolen at the highest levels. Buhari has embarked on an energetic anti-corruption campaign (some claim selectively) since coming to power in 2015 on a platform of promising to tackle graft.
But as the Panama papers leak highlighted, corruption of this scale has only been made possible by a network of offshore secrecy jurisdictions and tax havens – many of which are overseen by the UK and directly benefit certain British interests. Thanks to this system, Africa is a net creditor to the rest of the world, and Nigeria is no exception.
Who is really ‘fantastically corrupt’? What is being done to tackle corruption both in Nigeria and internationally? Is this era of economic recession and ongoing security challenges the right one for Nigeria to definitively tackle corruption?
Kayode Ogundamisi, Journalist and commentator on Nigerian and international affairs, and convener of the Liberty Forum UK
Charles Abiodun Alao, Professor of African Studies at King’s College London
Maggie Murphy, Transparency International's Senior Global Advocacy Manager
Ayo Sogunro, Writer, Teacher, Columnist, Lawyer
The office of Lai Mohammed, Minister of Information and Culture, Federal Republic of Nigeria regrets that he will no longer be able to attend this event.
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