Public Affairs Religious leaders intervene whenever I want to sack some corrupt officials –...
The Vice President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo has disclosed that whenever he wants to sack a public official who has been found to be corrupt, he gets many calls from religious and political leaders who ask him not to do so.
Speaking on at 24th Nigerian Economic Summit plenary on corruption and rule of law, in Abuja on Monday, he stated that the Nigerian elite often stand in the way of getting rid of corrupt officials.
The founding dean of Blavatnik School of Government at Oxford University, Ngaire Woods, who moderated the plenary had asked Osinbajo to tell the summit who calls him when he wants to sack someone corrupt.
Responding, Osinbajo said: “I would like to refer to the Nigerian elite, and it’s probably not fair to be that broad, but practically, every segment, because people who have access to you, they could be political leaders, religious leaders, business leaders, whoever has access to you.
“We have a system where people just feel like, ‘why don’t you just give this guy a break?’ Which again is part of the problem. You don’t get one call, you get several calls.”
The vice-president went on to state that the government is doing so much to tackle grand corruption and systemic corruption; stating that since he became vice-president, he has seen how much impact corruption can have on a country — and its more than he ever imagined.
The vice president, who had served as commissioner of justice and attorney-general in Lagos state for eight years, said one of the most frustrating parts of the fight against corruption for him is the slow pace of prosecution.
He, however, added that the two conviction of former executive governors secured by the federal government has shown that the hand of justice may be slow, but it would eventually catch up.
Osinbajo stated that reforms are important, and the federal government has embarked on a number of them, including the criminal justice reform, but the federal government cannot reform state judiciaries.