The Civil Society Legislative Advocacy Centre (CISLAC), has said that the outcome of the United States election is a progressive change that reflects the aspirations and desires of the people of America.
A statement by the Executive Director of CISLAC, Awwal Musa Rafsanjani, called on the President-Elect, Joe Biden to consider Nigeria in his foreign policy, by paying more attention to ensuring accountability and good governance in Nigeria.
Part of the statement: “According to CISLAC, this is because strengthening of the Nigeria-United States bilateral relationship through trade, investment and transfer of know-how remains paramount to mitigate the fast-growing unemployment challenges and boost industrialisation with youth employment opportunities.
“Lamenting how trade relationships with developed countries have sadly deepened the economic inequality in Nigeria, the statement, however, expresses belief that trade could serve as a catalyst for economic and human development if conducted in equity and fairness. Stretching the argument, CISLAC says it is in the interest of the United States that bilateral trade benefits all segments of the Nigerian society by contributing to poverty reduction in a country with over half of the 200 million population live in abject poverty while just over 50 thousand of Nigerians enjoy immense wealth of at least 1 million USD in assets
“Also included in the shopping list covered in the congratulatory message is formulating and implementing what it calls a coherent policy to address the lingering insecurity in Nigeria. The NGO is arguing that every Nigerian could witness the impact and consequences of the generalised insecurity kidnapping for ransoms, rural banditry, attacks by insurgents and wide socio-economic dissatisfaction.
“Citing recent public riots across Nigeria, CISLAC says the breakdown of the law and order happened in spite of the immense wealth from natural resources of Nigeria. It, therefore, feels the importance of drawing the attention of the President-elect to what it calls the systemic corruption that has eaten deep into Nigeria’s public sphere including unaccounted asset recovery and normalised money laundering.
“It is estimated that the cost of corruption in Nigeria runs as high as 30% of the country’s GDP, CISLAC pointed out, adding the downside of the Nigerian Government claiming recovery of assets worth billions of dollars but without proper accountability on the management and utilization of the assets as to prevent re-looting.”