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Subversion of justice height of graft, says Usoro

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The President, Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), Mr. Paul Usoro (SAN), has described any form of subversion of justice and abuse of prosecutorial power as the height corruption.

Usoro, who spoke at the ceremony to commemorate this year’s International Anti-corruption Day, added that corruption begets corruption and fosters a corrosive culture of impunity.

He stated that “the corruption in our criminal justice system is exemplified by the index we use to measure our success in the fight against corruption, the number of convictions that are secured as well as the volume of assets that are purportedly recovered.

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“By using these as our primary index for determining our success in fighting corruption, we set targets that induce corruption and abuse of prosecutorial rights.

“We indirectly make a statement that the end justifies the means and in the process, encourage and advocate for convictions and purported recovery of assets no matter how crooked, corrupt and undermining of justice the processes may be for attaining those goals.”

In light of the above, Usoro expressed the need to draw governments’ attention towards proactive strategies in the fight against corruption.

Urging Nigerians to rise up against all forms of corruption, the NBA President noted that corrupt conducts transcend financial and economic practices to include administrative malfeasance, political non-accountability; absence of transparency as well as impunity in the use of the public office.

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