Corruption As A Major Challenge In Nigeria: A Perspective Of Democratic Government Between 1999-2015 And An Assessment Of Dividends Of Politics In Nigeria: A Case Study Of Lagos State Government.

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Corruption As A Major Challenge In Nigeria: A Perspective Of Democratic Government Between 1999-2015 And An Assessment Of Dividends Of Politics In Nigeria: A Case Study Of Lagos State Government.


Abstract


The study seeks to appraise corruption as a major challenge in Nigeria: a perspective of democratic government between 1999-2015 and an assessment of dividends of politics in Nigeria. The study employs survey research design. The population of this study consisted of twenty-one (21) staff of Lagos State Government. Data were collected through questionnaire carefully designed and administered to the respondents, as well as through personal interviews. The results show that the level and effect of corruption in Lagos is low. The research results suggest that corruption is gradually becoming a norm which is largely embraced by the high and mighty, poor and lowly in the nation of Nigeria. It is a glaring truth that corruption has adverse effect on human capital development and education. It therefore recommends that the commission should explore inter-nations technical co-operation on corruption, to develop mechanism that would help Nigeria have a system that discourages outright stealing of public fund, and develop an anti-corruption war that relied on forensic evidence, well-trained personnel and free of unnecessary controversies.


Chapter One


Introduction

1.1 Background to the Study

Corruption constitute a great challenge to the realization of democratic dividend in form of Education, social, economic, and political development of any nation. The issue has therefore generated public outcry and the concern of government to stem it out of the Nigerian cultural heritage.. The United Nations Global Programme against Corruption (GPAC) defines corruption as “abuse of power for private gain”. It can also be defined as a pervasion or change from the general accepted rules or laws for selfish gain (Farida, 2010). The World Bank however defines corruption as: The abuse of office for private gains. Public office is abused for private gain when an official accepts, solicits or extorts a bribe. It is also abused when private agents actively offer bribes to circumvent public offices and processes for competitive advantages or profit. Corruption is also regarded as the theft of state assets, or the diversion of state resources. Given this development therefore, corruption connotes any behavior that deviates from an established norm with regards to public trust. It also means theft of public trust whether the person concerned is elected, selected, nominated or appointed and it does not matter whether the person affected holds office or not since anybody can be corrupt. The research seek to appraise corruption as a major challenge in Nigeria: a perspective of democratic government between 1999-2015 and an assessment of dividends of politics in Nigeria: a case study of Lagos state government.


1.2 Statement of the Problem

The effects of corruption on the Nigerian economy have led to high level recession resulting in dwindling economic state and devastating consequence on the people. Consequently it is difficult for the nation to reap the full dividend of democracy. Corruption has deterred economic development due lack of financial resources which have otherwise being diverted by corrupt leaders into private accounts for personal aggrandisment.The issue of corruption has therefore generated greatest concern the public and the government. . The issue of corruption is further worsened by the high level of greed , poverty, political rivalry, disregard to the principle of law in the society. The problem confronting the research is to appraise corruption as a major challenge in Nigeria: a perspective of democratic government between 1999-2015 and an assessment of dividends of politics in Nigeria: a case study of Lagos state government.


1.3 Objectives of the Study

To proffer an appraisal of corruption as a major challenge in Nigeria: a perspective of democratic government between 1999-2015 and an assessment of dividends of politics in Nigeria: a case study of Lagos state government.


1.4 Research Questions

  1. What is the nature of corruption in Nigeria?
  2. What are the effects of corruption from the democratic government of Nigeria between 1999- 2015?
  3. What is the nature and effect of corruption in Lagos state?

1.5 Significance of the Study

The study shall proffer a structural appraisal of corruption as a major challenge in Nigeria: a perspective of democratic government between 1999-2015 and an assessment of dividends of politics in Nigeria: a case study of lagos state government.


1.6 Research Hypothesis

  • Ho The level and effect of corruption in Lagos is low
  • Hi The level and effect of corruption in Lagos is high

1.7 Scope of the Study

The study seek to investigate corruption as a major challenge in Nigeria: a perspective of democratic government between 1999-2015 and an assessment of dividends of politics in Nigeria: a case study of Lagos state government.


1.8 Limitations of the Study

The study was confronted by some constraints including logistics and geographical factors


1.9 Definition of Terms

Corruption Defined

The World Bank however defines corruption as: The abuse of office for private gains. Public office is abused for private gain when an official accepts, solicits or extorts a bribe. It is also abused when private agents actively offer bribes to circumvent public offices and processes for competitive advantages or profit.


Chapter Five


Discussion of Findings, Conclusion and Recommendation

5.1 Discussion of Findings

The research result shows that it was strongly disagreed that the level and effect of corruption in Lagos is low. This implies that the level and effect of corruption in Lagos is high. This is as a result of the misuse of public fund and misallocation of public funds for other uses by politicians. These consequently undermine the level of development of the state as basic amenities are not sufficiently provided to meet the challenges of the people of Lagos. Moreover the level of realisation of political dividends is low as corruption affects the nation’s financial resources. As a result social services, health, infrastructures and educational facilities are not sufficiently provided. Major causes of corruption include greed, political rivalry, poverty etc. Corruption is an abuse of power for private gain.” The Transparency International, which in 2009 rated Nigeria as the 130th corrupt country out of 180 corrupt countries in the world, defines corruption as “The abuse of entrusted power for private gain.” Rt. Hon. Hillary Benn, a former British Secretary of State for International Development declared that-“Corruption is both a cause and a consequence of poor and outright bad governance….Corruption is most able to thrive where accountability is poor”. Also, simplifying corruption by its manifestation, Thuli N. Madonsela said that- “Corruption involves the abuse of power for private gain. Actual acts range from a simple act of bribing someone to skip a queue or bribing a traffic officer to avoid a speed fine to serious conduct as the irregular award of tenders or even buying political patronage.” A number of statutes here in Nigeria equally define or seek to make a meaning of the term corruption. Under the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences (ICPC) Act, particularly Section 2 thereto, corruption is defined to include “bribery, fraud, or other related offences. The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission Act on its own part deals with what is to be known as economic and financial crimes, which do not in any way depart from the meaning ascribed to corruption. Under the definition section, Section 46 in particular, the Act provides as follows: … the non-violent criminal and illicit activity committed with the objectives of earning wealth illegally either individually or in a group or organized manner thereby violating existing legislation governing the economic activities of government and its administration and includes any form of fraud, narcotic drug trafficking, money laundering, embezzlement, bribery, looting and any form of corrupt malpractices, illegal arms deal, smuggling, human trafficking and child labour, illegal oil bunkering and illegal mining, tax evasion, foreign exchange malpractices including counterfeiting of currency, theft of intellectual property and piracy, open market abuse, dumping of toxic wastes and prohibited goods, etc.; On a global front, the provision of Article 1 of the UN Convention against Corruption defines corruption to include : “The bribery of national or foreign public officials, bribery in the private sector, misappropriation of property by a public official, influence trading, abuse of functions and illicit enrichment.” In the Nigerian case of Biobaku v. Police15, Bairamian J (as he then was) seemingly defined corruption as “The receiving or offering of some benefit, reward or inducement to sway or deflect a person employed in the public service from the honest and impartial discharge of his duties-in other words, as a bribe for corruption or its price.” It has also been said to be endemic, and seen as the biggest and most embarrassing challenge facing the country today. It also entails economic and financial crimes18 as well as bribery, and other related offences. Corruption is gradually becoming a norm which is largely embraced by the high and mighty, poor and lowly in the nation of Nigeria. Without any caution, one can even perceive corruption as a way of life of many people in Nigeria.


5.2 Conclusion

It is a glaring truth that corruption has adverse effect on human capital development and education. Therefore, there is an urgent need for more women to get involved in leadership in order for the country to experience a new bright side of life. Currently, corruption is eating deep into the fabric of the nation, only women, who are not criminally minded, will eradicate corruption and stabilize Nigeria. The problem now is how, where and when to find such credible candidates in the nation. The fight against corruption in the country is a collective fight by all


5.3 Recommendation

The research therefore recommends the followings

The research therefore recommends that the commission should explore inter-nations technical co-operation on corruption, to develop mechanism that would help Nigeria have a system that discourages outright stealing of public fund, and develop an anti-corruption war that relied on forensic evidence, well-trained personnel and free of unnecessary controversies. EFFC should, this time-around, effectively utilize the provisions in the National Assembly Act 2004, establishing it. For instance, Part III, section 12, subsection 1(c) and subsection (2), which provided for establishment of Research Unit; and any committee to assist the commission, are good avenues for the commission to explore to bring itself at par with Nigerians expectations. However, the best weapon the new helmsman of EFFC have, is, adherence to rule of law.


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