SERAP said President Jonathan’s promise for 2013 is “routine and rhetorical”
A civil society organization has advised President Goodluck Jonathan that fighting corruption head-on and ending the culture of impunity are key to transforming the country instead of reeling out empty promises.
The Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project, SERAP, said in a statement on Sunday that President Jonathan’s promise to work faster this year to meet the needs of the people is “routine and rhetorical.”
“The President must show strong leadership and lead by example if he is to earn the trust of Nigerians and convince them that he is truly committed to the fight against corruption,” said SERAP Executive Director, Adetokunbo Mumuni.
“Ultimately, the responsibility for sorting out Nigeria rests with President Jonathan. The buck stops with him. Nigerians will judge him not by the number of promises he has made but by the number of roads repaired, decent hospitals established, and how much difference he is able to make to ensure the enjoyment of other basic necessities of life for millions of impoverished Nigerians.”
The statement called on the president to lead by example by declaring his own asset as required by the constitution and to prosecute his cohorts accused of corruption.
“Half measures which avoid public scrutiny of the President’s own asset declaration, and effective prosecution of corruption cases when they involve those connected with this government are utterly inadequate and tend to throw the government into disrepute.”
“Genuine fight against corruption can’t happen unless President Jonathan wants it, and leads by example,” the statement added.
The statement said that the woeful positions the country occupies in the 2012 Failed States Index published by the United States based Foreign Policy Journal and the 2012 United Nations’ Human Development Index should give the president serious concern.
Nigeria was ranked 144 out of 177 countries in the Failed State index and 159 out of 172 countries in the Human Development Index.
SERAP therefore said in other to do better this year President Jonathan should “prioritise and demonstrate his expressed commitment to fight corruption by urgently ensuring the effective prosecution of those suspected of massive corruption in the fuel subsidy system and fully recover stolen public wealth and resources.”