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 Lai Mohammed Explains Why Nigeria Is Ranked Low By Transparency International

Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, says Nigeria’s low
rating on the Transparency International (TI) corruption perception
index is due to certain gaps in the provision and analyses of data
between the country and the anti-corruption agency.

While briefing newsmen after the Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting
presided over by President Muhammadu Buhari at the State House in Abuja,
the minister stated that the government looked into the ratings and made
certain discoveries that show why the low rating has continued.

“We took the ratings seriously, so we actually went to analyze the
ratings, and we found that there have been some gaps; either we have not
forwarded enough data or they have not analysed such data.

The spokesman further revealed that the government found it strange that
the country’s rating has remained the same for a period of 10years.

He however noted that the authorities are taking remedial measures so
they can get the data in respect of those sectors.

“We believe that it is not possible for you not to improve, for you not
to lose points for 10years. There is a bit of discrepancy” Lai Mohammed
stressed.

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Mr Mohammed argued that the issue of TI’s low ranking of the country was
not necessarily about stealing of public funds, arguing that the
assessment has so far not correctly reflected the government’s effort to
curb graft in the country.

The minister observed that there are some inconsistencies in the ranking
by the global body over the years due to inadequate data, noting however
that reforms are in the works to see that the nation’s corruption
perception would improve.

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In alluding to past rankings, Mr. Mohammed said it was realized that the
nation was scored very low in the area of ease of doing business in
particular.

“That is why the Federal Government embarked on reforms, especially at
the seaports. That is one area where we scored very low and you’ll see
that in recent times, we’ve embarked on numerous reforms at our seaports
so that our rating will improve.

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“In addition, we are putting more emphasis on the preventive mechanism
of corruption rather than prosecution. The preventive mechanism that
we’ve put in place include the National Ethics Policy launched by the
ICPC to address integrity issues in all sectors of the polity and is
directly linked to the pillar of the national anti-corruption strategy,”
the minister stated.

He added that “the Code of Conduct Bureau has put in place some
preventive measures, especially in the area of energizing the code of
conduct for public officers

“The Council for Ease of Doing Business recently launched the Nigerian
Ports Process manual to hasten the processing of goods at the ports.”

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