President Muhammadu Buhari yesterday said he Nigeria did not need any apology from the United Kingdom over Prime Minister David Cameron’s comment labelling Nigeria as “fantastically corrupt,” but the recovery of stolen funds stashed away in the UK.”
Speaking at the London anti-corruption conference, President Buhari said he was more interested in the return of stolen assets held in British banks.
LEADERSHIP recalls that Cameron was caught on camera ridiculing Nigeria as a “fantastically corrupt” country on Tuesday afternoon.
The Presidency had, however, faulted the statement credited to Cameron, saying the Prime Minister was probably looking at an old snapshot of Nigeria as things were changing with corruption and everything else.
President Buhari said, “I am not going to be demanding any apology from anybody. What I will be demanding is the return of assets. I have already mentioned how Britain how they led and how disgraceful one of Nigeria’s executives was. He had to dress like a woman to leave Britain and left behind his bank account and fixed assets which Britain is prepared to hand over to us.
This is what I am asking for. What will I do with apology? I need something tangible.”
President Buhari recalled that in 2003, when the world came together to sign the United Nations Convention Against Corruption (UNCAC) that entered into force in 2005, it was with a view to tackling the growing threat that corruption had become to many nations.
He said,” Permit me to share with you our national experience in combating corruption. I intend to do this by placing the fight against corruption in Nigeria within the context of the three priority programmes of our Administration. On assumption of office on 29th May 2015, we identified as our main focus three key priority programmes. They are, combating insecurity, tackling corruption and job creation through re-structuring the declining national economy.
“Our starting point as an administration was to amply demonstrate zero tolerance for corrupt practices as this vice is largely responsible for the social and economic problems our country faces today. The endemic and systemic nature of corruption in our country demanded our strong resolve to fight it. We are demonstrating our commitment to this effort by bringing integrity to governance and showing leadership by example.”