Nigerian Laws Strong Enough To Fight Corruption-University Don

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Yakubu Busari

law-justice-courtA constitutional lawyer, Prof. Sylvester Shikyil, says Nigerian anti-graft laws are strong enough to totally eradicate corruption in the country.

Shikyit, who is Head of Department, Public Law, University of Jos, spoke to on Sunday in Jos.

“For now, our anti-graft laws are strong enough to totally eradicate corruption from our society; all we need is the political will to enforce existing laws,” he said.

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Shikyit, however, noted that law is a living thing; it is very dynamic, and so can change from time to time.

“We have the ICPC Act, the EFCC Act, the Penal Code and the Criminal Code. All these are very strong compared to other jurisdictions.

“A law without a strong political will is just like passing brown water and saying it’s tea,” Shikyit said.

He insisted that the war against corruption by the present administration was a good strategy for attaining meaningful development.

The professor condemned the assertions in some quarters that the ongoing anti-graft war was selective, and targeted at some few individuals.

“It pissed me up anytime I hear people saying the present government is going after officials who served under the past administration or that the anti-graft war is only targeted at PDP members.

“But come to think of it, what do people expect when PDP and its inhabitants have been in power for the past sixteen years?

“Commonsensical, it Is obvious that majority of those to be accused will be members of the PDP, their sympathisers or those that work under the previous government,” Shikyit explained.

The professor attributed the slow pace in the adjudication of criminal cases to inadequate courtrooms, shortage of judges and the archaic way judges still use in taking notes.

Shikyil said the combination and involvement of stakeholders in the handling of corruption related cases was another reason behind some of the delays experienced in handling such cases.

“In any criminal prosecution, there is a combination of efforts from different stakeholders; the court is there, prosecutors and defendants are also there, and even witnesses must be ready for the case to move smoothly.

“The court alone is not absolute over proceedings, which is a very serious challenge, because the court is just an arbiter,” he said.

The don urged government at all levels to ensure proper funding regime for the judiciary, saying that would fast-tracked the speedy dispensation of Justice.

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