The fight against corruption is a “do or die affair” which Nigerians must win or die trying, the acting chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Ibrahim Magu, has said.
Mr. Magu, who spoke at the headquarters of the commission in Abuja after leading a rally to commemorate the International Anti-corruption Day, said corruption is Nigeria’s number one enemy.
“For us as a country, the fight against corruption is a do or die affair; we have to win the battle or die trying. Corruption, as agreed by every consensus, is our number one enemy and as President Muhammadu Buhari correctly prescribed, if we do not kill corruption, corruption will kill Nigeria,” he said.
The EFCC boss said Nigerians cannot afford to be on the fence on the corruption issue, as he called for a consensus against the malady.
“The fight against corruption is now a war in which there is clear line between forces of evil and those of good; between agents of progress and reactionary elements who mean no good.
“For those of us on this side; in the anticorruption agencies of government, in the media, and civil society, the dagger is drawn and I believe I am speaking the mind of everyone on this side that we intend neither retreat nor surrender in our noble intention to cure our country of the evils of corruption,” he said.
Mr. Magu said the Commission was “relentless” in its duties but added EFCC alone could not win the fight.
“As I often say, our bit is not enough. Winning the war against corruption is the aggregate of our collective bits and pieces. No Nigerian can afford to be on the fence in this effort to rid our country of its Enemy Number One. It is time for all hands to be on deck to march on corruption and the corrupt”.
He said the EFCC “has broken new grounds in investigating and prosecuting important cases, and recovery of stolen money. Our asset recovery derive has raked in billions of naira to the federal government in form of forfeitures. We have also secured 171 convictions within the last one year”.
In his remarks, the accountant general of the federation, Anthony Mkpe, who took part in the walk, said his presence was to show solidarity to the work of the EFCC and underscore the importance of the fight against corruption.
He commended the effort of the EFCC as he urged all Nigerians to lend their support to the federal government’s anti-corruption drive and initiatives.