We’re determined to kill corruption – Buhari

We’re determined to kill corruption – Buhari
February 18 21:33 2016

President Muhammadu Buhari has reiterated his determination to rid the nation of all forms of corruption.

 The President who spoke at the annual Diplomatic cocktail in the State House, Abuja said his government was committed to building a stable and prosperous nation, which he said was not possible in a corrupt environment.

According to him, it has become necessary to wage a relentless war against the cancer of corruption, stressing that so long as corruption holds center stage in the affairs of Nigeria, the country would continue to suffer incalculable harm. 

 The President recalled  that in a similar fight during his first stint as leader of the nation, he led a government that required persons presumed to be corrupt to prove their innocence.

He, however, said that as committed democrats, and in a culture of deepening democracy, his administration respects the law that presumes all persons innocent until they are proven to be guilty.

President Buhari said since he assumed office eight months ago, there had been a boost in the morale and will of the Nigerian Armed Forces to dislodge Boko Haram from their bases in the North East.

He stated that the changes in both command structure and operational tactics have brought about significant gains on the ground while the Armed Forces have been given specific instructions on rules of engagement to treat captured terrorists humanely and to avoid civilian casualties.

“​It is worthy to note that when I assumed office on May 29, 2015, Boko Haram had full control of fourteen (14) Local Governments Areas in the North East, but today, the group holds no territory in Nigeria. They are hiding in Sambisa forest and occasionally undertake cowardly attacks on innocent citizens in soft targets.

​”This has resulted in a dramatic improvement in the security situation in that part of the country. You are, in fact, aware that people who were once internally displaced from their homes for years are gradually returning to rebuild their homes, communities and livelihood.

“​As the security situation continues to improve, and as more people return to their homes, government will spare no effort to support them with robust programmes and projects to hasten the process of rehabilitation and resettlement. The General T.Y Danjuma-led Committee has been saddled with the responsibility of coordinating these efforts”, he said.

The President stated that his administration was quite aware that the war on terror would not, and cannot be won by military might alone, saying that soft approach that speaks directly to the human mind was also necessary .

According to him, poverty and hunger do not only incapacitate, but they can lead to desperation, adding that poverty and marginalization, among other factors, can easily create room for indoctrination and co-option into violent extremism.

He stated that his administration was paying attention to those economic programmes that would lead to empowerment of the people and thus provide an alternative lifestyle of fruitful engagement rather than resort to extremist and terrorist activities.

Buhari pointed out that job creation and provision of quality education are key areas that are already receiving attention.

The President said Nigeria would continue to build strong partnerships, strengthen regional ties and promote global solidarity.

He stated that the country would remain a responsible and active member of the international community; promoting tolerance, accommodation, reconciliation and pacific settlement of disputes.

The President said Nigeria would also continue to shoulder responsibilities in peace keeping under the auspices of the United Nations.

“We have benefitted from the dividends of democracy. We have enjoyed an unprecedented period of civil rule, reaching a milestone in our last election, which ushered not only a new government to office, but also witnessed the peaceful transfer of power from a ruling party to an opposition party. Without a doubt, Nigeria’s democracy is growing and gaining in strength.

“We are also convinced that there is no alternative to democratic governance, adherence to the rule of law, respect for human rights and adherence to constitutional order. Upholding these values remains the essential for peace, stability and development.

“We owe it a duty not to hand down to the next generation a world that is deeply divided and threatened by nature”, he said.

Speaking earlier, Dean of the Diplomatic Corps and Cameroonian Ambassador to Nigeria, Salaudeen Ibrahim commended Buhari in his resolve to fight corruption and restore the glory and pride of the nation.