President Muhammadu Buhari has affirmed in New York that checking the menace of corruption would create major funding for developmental programmes and projects for African countries.
Buhari stated this while addressing a ‘High-Level Roundtable on Corruption, Migration, Bridging Africa’s Infrastructural Gap for Sustainable Development organised by New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD)/Africa Peer Review Mechanism (APRM) Nigeria’.
The President, at the event on the margins of the 73rd session of the UN General Assembly, expressed regrets that huge amounts of funds were still being squirreled out of the continent.
“It is still worrisome considering that billions of dollars, great talents and professionals are continually drained out of the continent through various corrupt activities thus causing poor investment inflows, undermining the rule of law, stifling trade, worsening macro-economic conditions and escalating level of poverty in our countries,” he said.
The Nigerian leader declared that “these detestable practices are being perpetrated by some international collaborators hiding in secret jurisdictions”.
He, however, expressed delight that “efforts are being made by African leaders to ensure greater transparency and accountability in government business, fostering regional integration as well as creating enabling environment for our youth”.
Buhari stressed that “these efforts will remain unabated, as African leaders will remain unrelenting.
“We must adopt laws, regulations and policies that encourage transparent financial transactions, youth and women’s empowerment programmes as well as establishing good infrastructural links among member states towards sanitising the continent of these ills,” he said.
He described NEPAD as a strategic framework document designed for the “socio-economic development of Africa and a policy framework to address our economic and social challenges”.
The president implored his colleagues to eradicate poverty, place African countries on a path of sustainable growth and development, and halt the marginalisation of Africa in the globalisation process.
He also challenged them to enhance NEPAD’s full and beneficial integration into the global economy and accelerate the empowerment of women and youth.
The Nigerian leader noted that the APRM was a flagship programme of NEPAD and a specialised Agency within the AU structure, and mainly “a self-monitoring and assessment tool for peer learning and enthronement of good governance on the continent.”
He reminded his fellow African leaders “that Agenda 2063 is a strategic framework for the socio-economic transformation of the African continent over the next 50 years with a strong mandate on NEPAD and APRM”.
Buhari urged them to “build on and seek the acceleration of the implementation of past and present continental initiatives for our growth and sustainable development.”
He assured the gathering that, “African leaders are totally committed to delivering these developmental goals, namely, AU Agenda 2063 and 2030 SDGs in order to keep up with the international economic development”.
The event was attended by former Under Secretary-General of the UN on Political Affairs, Ibrahim Gambari, Ministers and heads of agencies from Nigeria and across the continent.