Nigeria: President Buhari declares war against corruption

A few months before the presidential elections in Nigeria, Muhammadu Buhari decrees a state of emergency against corruption.

The head of state, candidate for a new mandate next year, had made one of his campaign promises in 2015, but his action against corruption is now criticized, including in his own camp.

The President wants to intensify this fight and orders that ill-gotten property be frozen.

The head of state has signed a new decree-law that allows to freeze property or any sale of property derived from criminal activity.

When signing the decree, Muhammadu Buhari revealed that public funds stolen by people currently tried or investigated amounted to 1.4 billion euros.

“If Nigeria does not kill corruption, corruption will kill Nigeria sooner or later,” he said.

This measure therefore aims to intensify the fight against corruption. It comes at eight months of the presidential election and it is not trivial.

Muhammadu Buhari is a candidate for his own succession. During his campaign in 2015, he had already made the fight against corruption the great promise of his mandate.

This commitment was welcomed when he came to power, but three years later, Nigerians disappoint, because the record is not convincing.

Several million stolen from public funds have been recovered by the state, but we are far from the expected amounts. And these seizures have always concerned officials of the previous administration or opponents of the regime, such as Sambo Dasuki, the former security adviser Goodluck Jonathan, or Diezani Madueke, the former Minister of Petroleum, to name a few.

In concrete terms, investigations are stalled and almost no one has been sent to prison nor was there, and this is very important, judicial reform.

As a result, this anti-corruption campaign is mostly like a political witch hunt.

A dissident group of the APC against Buhari

Parliamentarians from the ruling All Progressive Congress formed a dissident group less than a year away from the presidential election: the Reformed All Progressive Congress. An unsurprising announcement, which follows several months of internal party struggles. Party in which President Muhammadu Buhari, is increasingly criticized.

APC is not a party, but a splinter group. Buba Galadima, a former ally of President Muhammadu Buhari, announced his creation on Wednesday (July 5th), calling on all the disappointed members of the ruling party to join the movement.

According to him, the Buhari presidency is a “monumental disaster”. His team is considered “inept, incompetent” and without any vision.

Acute criticism following months of infighting within the APV. Struggles carried out notably by the presidents of the two chambers, Bukola Saraki and Yakuba Dogara, whose relations with the Head of State are notoriously conflictual.

This should not simplify the task of the former general. Candidate for his own succession, Muhammadu Buhari is under pressure on all fronts. After losing a lot of support in the central region, because of the inter-communal conflict between farmers and nomadic pastoralists, he will now have to contend with obvious opposition in his own camp, just weeks away from the party primaries.

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