Buharimeter, a civil society monitoring report tracking the implementation of the president’s campaign promises, has released a report that looks at the work of President Buhari’s administration from May 29 to December 31, 2015
The report has revealed that the only campaign promise that is being fulfilled is the fight against corruption. That leaves 221 unfulfilled campaigned promises out of the 222 that were made during the campaigns.
“PMB anti-corruption efforts have been commended as a step in the right direction,” the report noted.
“ Positive opinions in this regard are due to the possible positive impact of the efforts on development and democracy in the country.
“However, the government has been accused of politics of selection in the fight against corruption. A delay in the prosecution of the accused people has been a major criticism of the government. Moreover, while the government has shown unmatched commitment to curbing corruption, such effort should be institutionalised.”Buharimeter
The report observed that one of the promises of the current administration was to strengthen the capacity of anti-graft agencies, particularly EFCC and ICPC, by guaranteeing their prosecutorial and financial independence as well as security of tenure.
“Despite the fact that the anti-grant agencies have shown renewed efforts in the fight against corrupt practices, there has been no effort by the government to amend relevant laws to guarantee their independence in these areas,” states the report.
“Moreover, nothing has been done to enact the Whistle Blower Act, as promised by the administration. We believe that through these interventions, the performance of anti-graft agencies would not rely on the personality and political will of President Buhari, but rather the campaign against corruption would be institutionalised and thereby would extend beyond the current administration.”
The group also observed that the fight against corruption must not be devoid of strict adherence to the rule of law.
“In the last few months, several of the people accused of corruption have been detained against the law, which stipulates that all accused must be brought before the court 48 hours after arrest,” it stated.
“Some people granted bail have since been re-arrested and detained. The fight against corruption must be pursued in line with due process and never in abuse of the law.
“It is also imperative for the government to acknowledge that the fight against corruption should not be confused as sufficient to address all governance challenges in the country.
“Essentially, fighting corruption is and should remain one of the policy priorities of government but not the only overarching intervention necessary to strengthen governance, especially in a country like Nigeria where democracy is still transitioning.
“The campaign against corrupt practices should simultaneously exist with interventions such as social provisions that could discourage people from engaging in corrupt practices, and to a large extent, galvanize support for the campaign. This may also help institutionalise the anti-corruption process in the country.
“ Allegations of perceived bias continue to be made against the PMB administration in several parts of the country. For instance, the South Eastern part of the country continues to claim marginalization on the part of the government.”
The group noted the efforts of the military to fight Boko Haram but also noted that there is a rising wave of violent crimes such as armed robbery, kidnapping, militancy in the Nigeria Delta and the activities of Biafra separatists groups were posing even greater danger to the security of life in the country.