Framework for Eradication of Corruption in Nigeria

Developing and implementing a national strategic change management framework towards the eradication of corruption in Nigeria


By O. Chima Okereke, PhD

Herefordshire, UK



On May 29th, 2016, the government of President Muhammadu Buhari was one year in office. A number of articles have been written and views expressed on the media on the performance of his administration. The focus of this paper is not on performance analysis of the government but on the mantra of change which he made the clarion call for his electioneering campaign. Whereas change was used in the campaign to highlight their intention to transform the whole country for the better, change as it affects the eradication of corruption is the priority of this paper. It is evident that the anticorruption campaign has been in the forefront of the president’s activities within the past year. It has been closely followed by the fight against Boko Haram. Eradication of corruption in the country is an inescapable task. Apart from the hardship it causes internally, it has given us a very bad press externally for the past thirty years and more.

The statement made by Prime Minister David Cameron on May 10 that “Nigeria is one of the fantastically corrupt nation” drives home the scale of the problem as perceived by outsiders. It is unhelpful arguing about whether or not he is correct because it will serve no purpose. The productive approach, in the view of this writer, should be for us Nigerians to take effective actions to resolve whatever problems we have because it should be in our interest to eradicate the cankerworm of corruption that is destroying the moral, social and economic fabric of our nation.

The contribution of this paper is therefore to turn the searchlight onto ourselves as a nation, list some cases of corruption in our current history, and to present them as manifestations of the malaise in our nation. In effect, they constitute a definition of the problem that needs to be solved. It is also the objective of this paper to make suggestions for its solution. It is hoped that some of the readers may be challenged enough to join efforts towards the eradication of corruption especially following efforts in this paper to expose and disclose some real-life cases of corruption in our recent political and socio-economic history. It does us no good to sweep the problem under the carpet. Its eradication necessitates a clear definition of its various facets, agreeing on a strategic vision of what a corruption-free nation should be, and exploring options that could be translated into nation-wide activities for the implementation of goals that will ensure the actualisation of the vision. All these comprise a strategic framework for the eradication of corruption in our nation.

A strategic framework

The comprehensive eradication of corruption in all its forms calls for the use of a strategic framework to ensure holistic and sustainable efforts that will yield the desired corruption-free nation. There should be a clear vision of what the country should become in every aspect of our national life. It is essential that there should be proper identification of corruption in the recent history and the current events of the country. The strategic planning and implementation tasks consist of activities that should move the nation from the unacceptable position to the desired envisioned status. This done, it may become feasible to explore probable options that could be considered in the drawing up of a plan and implementation steps of the programme.

Accordingly, the rest of the contents of the paper consist of the following:

  1. Problem definition
  2. Strategic options for the design of solutions
  3. Analysis of options
  4. Recommendations on a tentative solution
  5. Conclusion

1.Problem definition

It is proposed that brief historical review of the problem of corruption in Nigeria is undertaken first. To appreciate the enormity or otherwise of the problem, it becomes necessary to look back into the history of the nation and choose a point at which it could be assumed that corruption became a major problem. It may be unwise and indeed inconsequential to start designing a solution without a clear understanding of the problem. Going back to history, it is suggested to start with the administration of General Olusegun Obasanjo.


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About the Author

Chima Okereke, PhD, PMP

Herefordshire, UK




Dr. O. Chima Okereke, Ph.D., MBA, PMP is the Managing Director and CEO of Total Technology Consultants, Ltd., a project management consulting company working in West Africa and the UK. He is a visiting professor, an industrial educator, a multidisciplinary project management professional, with over 25 years’ experience in oil and gas, steel and power generation industries. For example, On December 26th 2013, he completed an assignment as a visiting professor in project management; teaching a class of students on Master’s degree in project management in the Far Eastern Federal University, Vladivostok, Russia. In August and September 2013, he conducted an innovative, and personally developed training programme for seventy six well engineers of Shell Nigeria to enhance the efficiency of their operations using project and operations management processes. Before embarking on a career in consulting, he worked for thirteen years in industry rising to the position of a chief engineer with specialisation in industrial controls and instrumentation, electronics, electrical engineering and automation. During those 13 years, he worked on every aspect of projects of new industrial plants including design, construction and installation, commissioning, and engineering operation and maintenance in process industries. Chima sponsored and founded the potential chapter of the Project Management Institute (PMI®) in Port Harcourt, Nigeria, acting as president from 2004 to 2010.

Dr. Okereke has a Bachelor of Science Degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Lagos, and a PhD and Masters in Business Administration (MBA) degree from the University of Bradford in the UK. He also has a PMP® certification from the Project Management Institute (PMI®) which he passed at first attempt. He has been a registered engineer with COREN in Nigeria since 1983. For many years, Total Technology has been a partner for Oracle Primavera Global Business Unit, a representative in Nigeria of Oracle University for training in Primavera project management courses, and a Gold Level member of Oracle Partner Network (OPN. He is a registered consultant with several UN agencies. More information can be found at http://www.totaltechnologyconsultants.org/.

Chima is the publisher of Project Management Business Digest, a blog aimed at helping organizations use project management for business success. Dr. Okereke is also an international editorial advisor for the PM World Journal and PM World Library. He can be contacted at [email protected]  or [email protected].