Juliana Taiwo-Obalonye, Abuja
Senate President, Ahmed Lawan, has said any graft case that stretches for too long was tacit support for corruption.
Lawan who told State House Correspondents after attending the second National Summit on Corruption at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, also dismissed the notion that the present administration’s fight against corruption was selective.
“If a case of corrupt practice or alleged corrupt practice will last up to four, five, six or 10 years or so, you’ll know that something is wrong and that is giving some kind of tacit support to the corrupt practice. But if there’s always dispatch in the treatment of such cases, that will expedite action by the Judiciary to give support to the fight against corruption,” he said.
Lawan charged all organs of government to work together to facilitate the treatment of corruption cases with dispatch to enhance the war on the menace.
“The emphasis is to ensure that all hands are on deck. First of all, without the legislature there wouldn’t have been the ICPC. In the fourth session of the National Assembly, the ICPC bill was passed, which was assented to by the then President, that is to tell you the level of the need and imperative for togetherness in the fight against corruption. When you have a judiciary that works to ensure that cases of corruption are treated with dispatch, you will agree with me that that will help in the fight against corruption,” he said.
The Senate President said fighting corruption also required the support of the populace and urged citizens to consider themselves as key stakeholders in the fight.
“Some people will argue that sometimes there’s selectivity in the way and manner that the anti-corruption fight is fought. I think that is a matter of misunderstanding because when you have a set of people interested in public funds for 16 years, where do you think most of those that will be alleged to have done the wrong thing will come from?
“Certainly from that set of people and I believe that given the types of cases that were completely dispatched, we had APC or people who are supposed to be part of this administration, party or government, who are also incarcerated or prosecuted. So I believe that the fight against corruption by this administration has been quite open, quite non-partisan and I believe that going forward, we all the three arms of government, all the three levels of government, we need all the citizens to be part and parcel of the fight against corruption in Nigeria.”