Ibrahim Magu, Chairman, Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), yesterday solicited the support of the media in its efforts at ridding the country of corrupt elements.
While acknowledging that the commission does not have the monopoly, knowledge, and understanding to go it all alone, he requested that media practitioners join hands with them to ensure that the war against corruption is won.
Magu, who made the request during a-one-day roundtable on the Roles of media in anti-corruption campaign: Journey so far, organized by Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD) in Abuja, warned against creating an environment for the corrupt to take over the society.
“It should not be left only to the EFCC and sister anti-graft agencies. What we, as anti-graft agency, have observed in recent times is that when you fight corruption, corruption fights back, and often it does so through the media.”
In spite of the cordial relationship, which we have over the years strived to cultivate with the media; we have seen unfortunate instances, where a section of the media have decidedly chosen to, instead, be ready tools in the hands of the corrupt, manifested in malicious, opinion articles and paid advertorials designed to malign the good intentions of the EFCC.
“It should be noted that journalists and bloggers, are not only the writers of history, they are expected to be partners in progress with the EFCC. No one is an island of knowledge or sole repository of the knowhow of fighting corruption. We must be united in this fight against corruption. When we talk of whistle blowing, the media is paramount.”
He assured that his leadership of the EFCC would remain undaunted following a plot by the section of the media which had become a vehicle for corrupt officials to derail it from effectively prosecuting the war against corruption; adding that EFCC would not rest on its oars to making President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration achieve its desired result against graft.
However, he assured politicians and the electorate that the anti-graft agency would remain impartial and unbiased in the discharge of its duties especially by ensuring free and fair 2019 elections. As a way of reinforcing the assurance, he noted that they have put in place necessary machineries to make sure that vote-buying becomes a thing of the past.
He said the crusade against corruption was not only for President Buhari to be re-elected in next year’s election but to completely rescue ‘Nigeria’s soul’ from corruption by ensuring the giant of Africa was rid of corruption, insisting that he would not leave any stone unturned until Nigeria was freed of the corruption which had permeated every facet of the country’s corporate existence.