Buhari to Engage Nigerians Abroad in Anti-Corruption Crusade

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This year’s Diaspora Day celebration will focus on encouraging Nigerians abroad to contribute to the economic development of the country and join President Muhammadu Buhari’s anti-corruption crusade.

On Tuesday, the President will declare open the 2015 Diaspora Day/ Conference which will take place at the old Banquet Hall of the Presidential Villa, Abuja.

The Permanent Secretary in the office of the Secretary to Government of the Federation (SGF), Mrs. Ibukun Odusote while making the announcement said the President is interested in leveraging the expertise and experience in the on-going war against corruption.

She said “The idea is to leverage on their expertise and experience out there, which means that, as we have in this conference, some of them are experts being called all over the world to give their lead presentations on corruption.

“They have successfully helped some other economies to get themselves out of corruption, and they are Nigerians. So, we have an expert in that field that will be coming to Nigeria to speak in that area at the conference. We want to leverage on their expertise.

“You can find a lot of them, specialists and experts, in their various fields, making name for themselves and for Nigeria. We want to get an advantage of their experience out there in their global assignment.

“Number two is that we want to lure them into coming back to Nigeria and contributing to national development. Thirdly, we want them to contribute to the economic development of Nigeria, while they are out there.”

“We want them to invest in Nigeria; we want them to attract investment to Nigeria that can bring expansion in the change agenda of Mr. President.”

Furthermore, President Buhari during the weekend called on lawyers in the country to uphold the ethics of the profession and shun representation of corrupt clients.

Buhari said this during the opening of the 55th Annual General Conference of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) in Abuja on Sunday.

He said “I am convinced that law, law-makers, lawyers, law courts and the law enforcement agencies all have pivotal responsibilities to discharge, if the change we seek is ever to materialize.

“As you all know by now, this administration has taken on the challenge of improving security, fighting corruption and revamping the economy, among many others.

“The fight against corruption is in reality a struggle for the restoration of law and order. Corruption and impunity become widespread when disrespect for law is allowed to thrive in society. Disrespect for law also thrives when people get away with all sorts of shady deals and the court system is somehow unable to check them.

“Ability to manipulate and frustrate the legal system is the crowning glory of the corrupt and, as may be expected, this has left many legal practitioners and law courts tainted in an ugly way.

“In a gathering such as this, I do not need to elaborate on the way that corruption and impunity have damaged our economy. But I would like to say more on what, I believe, should be your role as legal practitioners, in helping us back to the path of rectitude.

“First, we need to make our courts functional and effective again. This means that we must have lawyers who take the ethics of the profession very seriously; lawyers who will not frustrate the course of justice, even though they defend their clients with all legitimate means and resources.

“Nigeria needs ethical lawyers who always keep the end of justice in mind and will never sacrifice the integrity of the legal system to cover the misdeeds of their clients, no matter how lucrative the brief may be.”

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