The Nigeria Police and the judicial arm of government have been presented as the most corrupt government institutions in Nigeria.
A report by the Nigeria Bureau of Statistics (NBS) displayed on its website on Wednesday says that over N400 billion was paid to public officials as bribes in the country between June 2015 and May 2016.
According to the NBS report titled, “Corruption in Nigeria: Bribery – Public Experience and Response 2017”, the highest incidents of bribery were from encounters with the police, and officials in the judiciary, especially prosecutors.
The NBS also noted that almost half of all encounters with the police led to one form of bribe or the other, while the rate of bribe-taking with prosecutors is at 33 per cent, closely followed by judges and magistrates, at 31.5 per cent.
Other encounters with government officials and their rate of corruption include car registration/driving licence officers (28.5 per cent); tax and Customs officers (27.3 per cent); road traffic management officials (25.5 per cent), public utilities officers (22.4 per cent) and land registry officers (20.9 per cent).
The report however noted that bribery was not limited to the public sector, as there were cases of corruption in the private sector as well.
“Taking into account the fact that nine out of every 10 bribes paid to public officials in Nigeria are paid in cash and the size of the payments made, it is estimated that the total amount of bribes paid to public officials in Nigeria in the 12 months prior to the survey was around N400 billion, the equivalent of $4.6 billion in purchasing power parity, PPP. This sum is equivalent to 39 per cent of the combined federal and state education budgets in 2016. Bribe-payers in Nigeria spend an eighth of their salary on bribes.
“The average sum paid as a cash bribe in Nigeria is approximately N5,300, which is equivalent to roughly $61 – PPP. This means that every time a Nigerian pays a cash bribe, he or she spends an average of about 28.2 per cent of the average monthly salary of approximately N18,900. Since bribe-payers in Nigeria pay an average of 5.8 bribes over the course of one year, 92 per cent of which are paid in cash, they spend an average of N28,200 annually on cash bribes equivalent to 12.5 per cent of the annual average salary,” the report stated.
33% adults paid bribes
According to the report, 33 per cent of Nigerian adults paid bribes when in encounters with public officials within the survey period.
“Almost a third of Nigerian adults (32.3 per cent) who had contact with a public official between June 2015 and May 2016 had to pay, or were requested to pay, a bribe to that public official.
“The magnitude of public sector bribery in Nigeria becomes even more palpable when factoring in the frequency of those payments, as the majority of those who paid a bribe to a public official did so more than once over the course of the year.
“According to the survey, bribe-payers in Nigeria pay an average of some six bribes in one year, or roughly one bribe every two months. On average, almost one bribe is paid by every adult Nigerian per year.
“By combining the total number of people who paid a bribe to a public official with the frequency of those payments, it is estimated that a total of roughly 82.3 million bribes were paid in Nigeria in the 12 months prior to the survey.
“This results in an average of 0.93 bribes paid per adult, or almost one bribe paid by every adult Nigerian per year,” NBS added in the report.
The NBS report said it shows that “corruption takes place across a number of different sectors of the public administration and that certain public officials have a disproportionate impact on the daily lives of Nigerians”.
In putting the report together, the NBS said it conducted a total of 33,067 interviews across the 36 states and Abuja, with persons aged 18 and above.
“The sampling methodology adopted is a stratified random sampling, with a stratification process conducted at the state level.
“In this case, the strata are represented by the 37 Nigerian states (36 states and the Federal Capital Territory) and within each state, the (adult) population was extracted randomly.
“In each of the 37 states, between 779 and 900 interviews were conducted. To make survey results at the state level representative at the national level, for the analysis of the data after the survey, the sample size was adjusted (“weighted”) for the size of the population in each state.
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