Tainted legal robes and challenges of anti-corruption agenda, by Williams Ekanem


As members of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) gather for their 55th annual general conference, they should for once undertake deep soul searching on their pivotal role in national development.
This is essentially because the preponderance of all nefarious activities in the country is borne out of the colossal failure of the judicial system to hold offenders accountable for their deeds at every level.
The single fact that anybody does whatever and goes scot-free is the singular reason corruption thrives, security is weak, drivers are careless, medical practitioners are negligent, governance is weak, educational system is poor, infrastructures are decayed and all one can think of.
Whatever disagreement one may have with current President Muhammadu Buhari, one cannot agree more with his message to this year’s annual gathering when he pointed out to legal practitioners in the country that the prevalent culture of “impunity has damaged our economy.”
Without a doubt, the rot in the judiciary goes far beyond affecting just the economy; the entire fabric of the society is relishing in the new normal culture of impunity, so much so that at any point in time, anywhere it may be, anything goes, all to the detriment of the national development.
Buhari said it all when he indicated in his speech that, “ for millions still wallowing in want and diseases, corruption is a major reason why they cannot go to school, why they cannot be gainfully employed, and why there are few doctors, nurses and drugs in hospitals and health centres.”
It is indeed very true, according to Buhari, that corruption is “the reason why pensioners are not paid and why portable water is scarce. Yes, corruption diverts public resources meant for millions of people into private pockets of a greedy few, thus causing a lot of suffering and deprivation.
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Source:: New Mail