President Muhammadu Buhari has recounted how during his rule as a military head of state, he was ousted from office and detained for three years for fighting corruption.
The president said this at the inauguration of the new corporate headquarters of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission in Abuja on Tuesday.
He however vowed to sustain the anti-corruption war despite the scars he suffered in his first attempt at fighting corruption as a military head of state between 1984 and 1985.
The President, who was in power, before he was ousted in a coup by Gen. Ibrahim Babangida (retd.), said all the corrupt persons that were arrested during his administration were released while the loot recovered from them were returned.
He said, “This government promised to fight corruption but corruption will continue to fight back. (During) my first attempt to fight corruption, corruption fought back successfully. I was removed as the head of state, detained for three years and people who we recovered stolen money from were given back their money and I remained in detention up until my mother had to die to save me from detention.”
Buhari further added: “Throughout my journey in national service and since 2015, I have made a very conscious decision to pursue a vigorous fight against corruption in public life.
“Since 2015, we have made significant progress in the fight against corruption. Everyone now knows that corrupt officials will be held to account, no matter how long it takes.
“We have recovered and are still recovering trillions of naira that were stolen in the past few years by people without conscience.
“We are pursuing recoveries everywhere and are making sure that anyone who has been found culpable is made to answer for his or her crime under the law.
“It is my hope and expectation that the judiciary, which is a critical stakeholder and partner in the war against corruption, would continue to collaborate with the executive to bring corrupt people to book.”