The Presidency on Tuesday said the statement credited to the British Prime Minister, David Cameron, that Nigeria is a “fantastically corrupt” country is not reflective of the anti-corruption posture of the Muhammadu Buhari administration.
The Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, said this in his reaction made available to journalists.
Shehu said the Prime Minister must be looking at the country’s past.
He said Buhari was changing all that are wrong with Nigeria, including corruption, and that was why the President was chosen as a keynote speaker at a pre-summit in London.
The presidential spokesman said, “It (Cameron’s statement) is certainly not reflective of the good work that the President is doing. The eyes of the world are on what is happening here.
“The Prime Minister must be looking at an old snapshot of Nigeria. Things are changing with corruption and everything else. That, we believe is the reason they chose him as a keynote speaker at the pre-summit conference.”
Shehu also commended the Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, for admitting that Buhari is not corrupt.
He said Nigeria cherished the good relationship between the two countries and nothing would truncate the relationship.
“Thank you to the Archbishop. We very much cherish the good relationship between our two countries and nothing should stand in the way of improving those relations,” he added.
In the same vein, Global anti-corruption network, Transparency International, has defended Nigeria and Afghanistan which the United Kingdom Prime Minister, David Cameron, described as ‘fantastically corrupt’ countries.
In a statement titled, ‘Transparency International responds to Cameron comments regarding Nigeria, Afghanistan and UK Summit’, the organisation said Nigeria was sincerely fighting corruption and the UK anti-corruption summit was a step in the right direction.
The organisation, however, said corruption was also affecting the UK as many of its overseas territories were notorious for corruption.’
The British Virgin Islands which is a British overseas territory, greatly featured in the Panama Papers due to its reputation as a notorious tax havens.
The statement, which was issued by Mr. Chris Sanders, read, “There is no doubt that historically, Nigeria and Afghanistan have had very high levels of corruption, and that continues to this day. But the leaders of those countries have sent strong signals that they want things to change, and the London Anti-Corruption Summit creates an opportunity for all the countries present to sign up to a new era.
“This affects the UK as much as other countries: we should not forget that by providing a safe haven for corrupt assets, the UK and its Overseas Territories and Crown Dependencies are a big part of the world’s corruption problem.”