TI Says Big Money in Elections Spur Corruption as Nigeria Ranks 146 Most Corrupt Nation…

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A gas station attendant displays a large bundle of naira banknotes after selling fuel to a customer in Port Harcourt, Nigeria, on Friday, Jan. 15, 2016. With his security forces engaged in fighting Boko Haram's Islamist insurgency in the north, President Muhammadu Buhari can't afford renewed rebellion in the delta. Photographer: George Osodi/Bloomberg

In the just concluded week, the Transparency International (TI) released its Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI)
report for 2019, and ranked Nigeria as the 146 most corrupt nation, dropping from the 144 position it held in
2018, out of the 180 countries sampled.

The index measured the perceived levels of public sector corruption, according to experts and business people in the world, by rating 180 countries according to attached scores which ranges from 0 as ‘Highly Corrupt’ to 100 as ‘Very Clean’.

Nigeria was ranked 146 alongside with Iran, Mozambique, Angola and Bangladesh as they all scored 26 points which relatively indicates ‘Highly Corrupt’.

Public sector corruption was highest in Somalia, South Sudan and Syria with scores of 180, 179 and 178
respectively.

However, New Zealand, Finland and Switzerland were the least corrupt countries as suggested by
their scores of 87, 86 and 85 respectively, thus rating very clean. Similarly, the report showed that public sector
corruption was pervasive in Sub-Saharan Africa as the region scored the lowest (average score was 32/100); however, Western Europe and European Union were the highest scoring regions with an average score of 66/100.

According to the global coalition against corruption institute, corruption was more pervasive in countries where
big money flowed freely into electoral campaigns and where governments listened only to the voices of wealthy
or well-connected individuals.

The report also revealed that managing conflicts of interest, controlling political financing, strengthening electoral integrity, regulating lobbying activities, tackling preferential treatment, empowering citizens, and reinforcing checks and balances, amongst other solutions would help countries reduce public sector corruption and foster the integrity of political system.

Given the claim by TI that corruption was high in countries where big money found its way freely into election
campaigns, we note that Nigeria wouldn’t have been graded better as elections in the country have been characterized by over spending, especially the 2019 elections which was majorly characterized by vote buying.

More so, the corruption campaign by the current administration have consistently been critized by many to be
one sided as politicians who align themselves with the ruling party appear to walk freely despite their obvious
corruption cases.

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