- The Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) has released a report indicting some politicians and top public officials of corruption
- Reading from the report, Esa Onoja, a senior lecturer of law in Abuja said that 55 politicians, top public officials and leaders allegedly stole N1,354trn between 2006 and 2013
- Onoja said that most of these corruption cases go with prosecution
Esa Onoja, a senior lecturer of law, litigation and professional ethics at the Nigerian law school, Abuja campus on Wednesday, April 18, revealed a new report by Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP), which claimed that not less than 55 politicians, top public officials and leaders allegedly stole N1,354trn between 2006 and 2013 from Nigeria’s treasury.
Titled “Letting the Big Fish Swim”, the report also revealed that though anti-graft bodies in Nigeria have secured more than 1500 non-high profile convictions between 2000-2017, they could only come up with 10 high profile convictions between throughout the same period, the Leadership.
The 112 page-report unveiled in Lagos and presented to the media by Onoja claimed that those accused of high-level corruption are getting away with their crimes.
It also read: “The amount of money embezzled, misappropriated or stolen by public officials and leaders between 2013 and 2017 has galloped beyond the contemplation of average Nigerians. Evidence abound that judges, judicial officers, lawyers and military officers are participants in the frenzy of despoliation of national wealth.”
Moreover, the report said: “In the investigation, prosecution and trial of high profile corruption cases in Nigeria, justice is imprisoned by snares contrived by actors in the legal community in aid of looters.
“High profile cases of corruption prosecuted by anti-corruption agencies between 2000 and 2017 as numbering 177 out of which 167 are pending.
“Total convictions are just 10. Out of the 10, only 3 convictions were obtained after full trial while 7 convictions were based on plea bargaining. Yet 1 of the 3 convictions based on full trial was discharged by the Supreme Court while 3 of the 7 convicted were granted presidential pardon.”
Meanwhile, NAIJ.com reported that the acting chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) Ibrahim Magu, on Monday, January 15, promised that the agency will increase the tempo in the fight against corruption in Nigeria. Magu called on all media organisations in Nigeria to join the EFCC in championing the task.
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