Calls for support, interventions on critical issues
By Gabriel Ewepu – Abuja
The Civil Society Legislative Defense Center, CISLAC, congratulated the president-elect of the United States, Joe Biden, and the vice president-elect, Kamala Harris, on Saturday for the victory in the presidential elections of November 3, 2020.
This was contained in a statement signed by the Executive Director, CISLAC and Head of Transparency International Nigeria, Auwal Rafsanjani, while expressing hope on the election statement that says, “progressive change that reflects the aspirations and wishes of the people of United States, as well as great anticipation of the international community for the leadership of the United States in urgent global matters ”, to which the organization called on CISLAC to urge the President-elect to pay attention to Nigeria in its foreign policy in the areas of accountability and good governance. in Nigeria.
The statement also called on the Biden presidency to intervene quickly in what it described as the deteriorating socio-economic situation, which would also have negative repercussions for global security and, by extension, affect the United States of America.
The statement reads in part: “While we look forward to working with the president-elect’s administration, as US support has been instrumental in advancing CISLAC’s goals in the past, we want bilateral trade between Nigeria and the United States to benefit. to Nigerian society.
“This is because strengthening the Nigerian-US bilateral relationship through trade, investment and the transfer of know-how remains critical to mitigating the growing challenges of unemployment and boosting industrialization with youth employment opportunities.”
The statement also noted that trade relations with developed countries have sadly deepened economic inequality in Nigeria, but expressed optimism that trade could serve as a catalyst for economic and human development if carried out fairly and fairly.
“It is in the interest of the United States that bilateral trade benefits all segments of Nigerian society by contributing to poverty reduction in a country where more than half of the 200 million people live in extreme poverty, while just over 50,000 Nigerians enjoy immense wealth of at least $ 1 million in assets
“We also want the formulation and implementation of what it calls a coherent policy to address persistent insecurity in Nigeria because all Nigerians feel the impact and heartbreaking consequences of widespread insecurity, kidnapping for ransom, rural banditry, attacks by insurgents and widespread socioeconomic dissatisfaction. .
“With the recent public unrest in Nigeria that caused the collapse of public order, this should not be due to the immense wealth of natural resources that Nigeria possesses.
Therefore, it is important to draw the attention of the president-elect to what he calls the systemic corruption that has profoundly affected Nigeria’s public sphere, including the recovery of unaccounted for assets and standardized money laundering.
“The cost of corruption in Nigeria is estimated to be 30% of the country’s Gross Domestic Product, GDP and the downside of the Nigerian Government demanding the recovery of assets worth billions of dollars, but without the due responsibility for the administration and use of the assets to prevent them from being looted again. “
The statement also implored the United States and the international community to contribute to strengthening electoral reform “beyond the innovation of the smart card reader; expand the increasingly reduced space of civil society; uncontrolled pocket ethno-religious politics in Nigeria; and divisive and unhealthy separatist upheavals.
However, the statement warned the Biden presidency against imposing sanctions on Nigeria, saying it would be counterproductive and harm the poor.