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IS GRAND CORRUPTION THE CANCER OF NIGERIA? A CRITICAL DISCUSSION IN THE LIGHT OF AN EXCHANGE OF PRESIDENTIAL LETTERS.
Grand corruption maintains a firm grip on the Nigerian economic, social and political system despite the existence of numerous anti-corruption institutional bodies and the justice system. Grand corruption is the sore spot in Nigeria’s pursuit of transparency and accountability in governance and has ensured the continuous neglect of the rule of law and due process, national underdevelopment, violation of socio-economic rights and insecurity. This paper, using the metaphor of “cancer” appraises the endemic grand corruption in Nigeria in the light of “open letters” exchanged between two prominent former Nigerian Presidents. It argues that the contents of the “two presidential letters” places moral mandate on Nigerians to renew the commitment towards combating grand corruption, particularly with the emergence of a new administration whose agenda portends a policy of zero tolerance to corruption. The paper is a qualitative desk-based research using secondary data obtained from laws of the country on corruption; reports from Nigerian anti-corruption agencies; court records and cases; reports from newspapers and magazines; articles in journals and books; reports from websites of developmental agencies and the civil society organisations. The paper recommends the strengthening of the anti-corruption agencies, law reforms and national reorientation through mass education and mobilisation with the aim of combating the cancer of endemic grand corruption in Nigeria.
Keywords: Grand corruption, Open Letters, Nigeria, Presidents, Cancer