- Presidency has blamed Nigerians for the TI's ranking on corruption
- Garba Shehu said the report does not reflect the true reality of the Nigerian situation under President Muhammadu Buhari
- Shehu's claim is coming hours after the communication minister, Lai Mohammed, rubbished the corruption report
The presidency has blamed Nigerians for the poor ranking of the country on the Transparency International corruption list in which Nigeria was declared second most corrupt.
Speaking on Channels TV on Monday, February 1, Garba Shehu, a media aide to President Muhammadu Buhari, said the ranking is not reflective of the current state of the country.
It would be recalled that Transparency International (TI) in its 2020 corruption index ranked Nigeria as the second most corrupt country in West Africa and 149 out of 180 countries in the world.
President Buhari rode to power in 2015 on the giant promise of fighting corruption and all corrupt activities in Nigeria.
Shehu said the index by TI is not a judgment on Buhari or his administration or its war against corruption, adding that ranking was based on the Nigerian culture.
"I will tell you that this one is a judgment on Nigerians because if you look at the indices they used at arriving at these conclusions, they used eight indices, six of which showed Nigeria as being more or less Nigeria in the same position.
“And when they talk about the justice sector, they are talking about perceived corruption in the judiciary. These perceptions are essentially not correct. Yes, there are issues in that sector but so many changes are going on in that sector wouldn’t it have been nice if they acknowledged it so that you encourage those judicial officers that are upright, and then the system gets getting better.”
Meanwhile, Ayo Fayose has taken a swipe at the current government, with the former governor of Ekiti state saying the latest corruption report is proof that there is a lack of will to fight graft in Nigeria.
In a series of tweets, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) chieftain said it is "illegal and morally unacceptable" for President Muhammadu Buhari to self-style himself as "Mr Integrity" as the latest corruption report lifted the lids on the level of graft in the current government.