While delivering his keynote address at the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) anti-corruption summit in Abuja on Tuesday, Rwandan president, Paul Kagame declared that Africa it’s not enough to fight corruption, but to create value and wealth.
He started his speech saying:
I would like to start by calling to mind the greatness of this nation (Nigeria). The diversity, creativity and ambition of Nigerians represent Africa. The achievements of Nigeria’s sons and daughters here at home and in your global diaspora make our continent proud.
Nigeria has always shown common cause with Africa’s progress and prosperity and this does not go unnoticed. This country is truly the engine of Africa’s potential. This is how we see Nigeria. I hope you know that.
We stand in solidarity with your efforts to build on all the assets with which this country has been blessed and we are invested in your success.
Kagame went on to suggest that the anti-corruption fight should be reframed “in positive terms: as a struggle for transparency, public integrity and accountability.”
Speaking on fighting corruption, Kagame said:
This is a fight that can be won; tolerating corruption is a choice, not an inevitability. It is within our power to end it. That is the most important starting point, otherwise, it will be a waste of time to keep talking about it.
Corruptions does not take decades to eradicate once we decide to break the habit.
We have to set our sights high, it is not enough to fight corruption just as merely fighting poverty, it is too small an ambition for Africa. We want to create value, we want to create wealth, not merely fighting corruption.
Kagame continued: “Corruption needs to be tackled from the top down. This is not only the fairest approach, it is also the most effective because it empowers the public to join the fight and hold leaders accountable.” He suggested that corruption must be fought using four key principles: “culture, responsibility, accountability and effectiveness”.
“We must discard the myth that corruption is endemic to particular cultures. corruption is a universal weakness, not an African one, and it is not part of our destiny as a continent,” he continued.
Kagame praised Buhari for being recognised as an African Union anti-corruption champion.
Watch full speech below:
Photo Credit: Rwandan Presidency