Action AID Nigeria has lamented over the negative impact of Corruption on Nigerians stating that an estimate of about 80 million Nigerians are living below the poverty line hence the belief that the SCRAP-Corruption (SCRAP-C) project will help ensure a better understanding of the need to end corruption in the country.
The Country Director-Action Aid Nigeria Ene Obi, who made this known in Abuja at a citizens dialogue on the ills of corruption in Nigeria said the impact of corruption is felt by the poor hence the need to eliminate corruption.
Obi said “Nigeria should be able to reduce the high rate of corruption in other to save the lives of the poor because it is the poor who suffers the most when the nation is corrupt”.
Action AID Country Director however urged Nigerian citizens and government to pay more attention to their values and stop appreciating wealth without investigating the source.
Action AID Project Manager SCRAP-C Newton Otsemaye, in his presentation on the SCRAP-C project said the weak legal system, weak sanctions and enforcements have led to an increase in corruption while he advocated for more efforts to address corruption in Nigeria.
According to Otsemaye, “SCRAP-C project aims to change people’s attitude towards corruption, this is the attitude we want to change in the next five years.
The root cause of poverty is corruption, hence corruption has to be addressed before poverty can be tackled. Poverty is the inability of an individual to access water, education, health services.
Give proper definition to corruption, as corruption is the reason why many children cannot go to school”.
While fielding questions from newsmen, the chair of Say No Campaign Ezennwa Nwagwu said Corruption is not just government, as even the poor man is involved hence the need for an attitudinal change. This program is targeted at changing attitudes and mindset.
In his words, “you go to the market and you realise there is adulterated oil, and the adulterated oil is sold at the same price with the original oil, it is the poor man’s health that is at risk and contaminated through this corrupt act.
When the rich is affected by corruption, they have a way out, but the poor don’t have a way out of corruption, if the primary health care facility in the rural community is not functioning and the poor man’s wife needs to deliver and can’t access health services, she dies and that contributes to maternal mortality, hence the need for corruption to be addressed”.
He stressed the need for conversations to deepen dialogue and understanding.