Buhari’s Administration now More Corrupt than My administration – Goodluck Jonathan

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Jonathan Goodluck

Former President, Dr. Goodluck Jonathan has lampooned the ongoing anti-graft war being waged by President Muhammadu Buhari as a mere media show, saying there is more corruption in Nigeria now than under his administration.

He claimed that he handed over a $500 billion, vibrant economy to President Buhari and lamented that his successor plunged the economy into recession through de-marketing of the country and turned round to blame it on the alleged mindless looting of the country by the People’s Democratic Party, PDP, the administration he succeeded.

However, in an email from the Attorney-General of the Federation & Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, SAN, dismissed the former president’s claims as untenable because it “was not backed by any trace of evidence.” He further asserted that the Buhariad ministration has driven corruption aground. Convinced that “he served Nigeria well’, Dr. Jonathan said there was an attempt by President Buhari’s administration to erase his achievements through misrepresentations, adding that his administration was neither clueless nor inept as claimed by critics.

These are part of excerpts from Dr. Jonathan’s new book: “My Transition Hours,” which was launched in Abuja, on Tuesday. Some government officials could not react to Jonathan’s assertions yesterday. A minister, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said he had better things to do than to respond to Jonathan’s claims, which he said were meant to confuse Nigerians. He directed Vanguard to talk to another senior minister on the issue.

Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Mr. Femi Adesina, said he was yet to read the book and could not make any comment. “I have not read the book and so, I cannot make any comment. When I have gone through the book, I will make an official comment,” he said. Also, National Publicity Secretary of the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC, Mr. Lanre Isa-Onilu, declined comments, saying “when Jonathan talks, it is government to government. I have not read the book and even if I have read the book, it is not talking about APC as a party.”

However, the PDP concurred with Jonathan, saying that the former president’s views reflected what was happening now. Jonathan’s claims untenable — Malami Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, dismissed Jonathan’s claims of Nigeria being more corrupt under President Buhari as untenable because the claim was not backed by any trace of evidence. According to him, available facts on the ground had proved that corruption was seriously decreasing in the country because of the robust policies and actions taken by the Buhari administration. Malami, in a mail to Vanguard, last night, said that even corrupt persons in Nigeria are feeling the heat of the anti-corruption drive by the Buhari administration and are very uncomfortable to continue with graft. The minister said there was no way corruption could be growing under Buhari, given the stringent measures put in place. His words: “The anti-corruption war in many countries in the world is not restricted to prosecution and conviction of the perpetrators, but importantly also deals with repatriation and recovery of stolen assets for the benefit of the populace as victims of corruption. Hence legislation in this regard should naturally not be restricted to criminal prosecution. “This administration had realized the importance of using civil methods of assets forfeiture and recovery especially as it imposes a lesser burden of proof on the part of the government and makes it easier to recover stolen assets.” The minister boasted that as proof of the effectiveness of the anti-corruption war being waged by the Buhari administration, N279 billion and huge assets had been recovered from corrupt elements in the country within a period of three years. “Apart from these efforts made locally to improve its successes in the fight against corruption through the enactment of enhanced legislation, the Federal Government had taken the anti-graft war to other jurisdictions. “The Office of the Honourable Attorney-General of the Federation has recovered the sums of N59billion and $385.4 million locally. The total sums recovered by the Ministry during the reporting period are $779,495,900.00 and N59,163,029,949.46 respectively. It may interest you to know that as at 29th May 2015, the balance in the recovery account of the FGN stood at N19,524,490,207. “This balance has increased (due to the recovery efforts of this administration) from N19.5 billion to N279 billion as at 22nd November 2017. This represents an increase of 1,329%,” Malami boasted.

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