The Association of Nigerians against Corruption (ANAC) is about corruption and efforts to combat it at the grass-roots level in Nigeria. The American Heritage College Dictionary (1993) defines corruption as an act “marked by immorality and perversion; depraved, venal, dishonest, to destroy or subvert the honesty or integrity of; to ruin morally, to taint; contaminate; to change the original form of (a text for an example)” . These are all human behaviors that is common in some manner across the world as an injustice action. In its simplest form, corruption refers to the misuse of power for private benefit or advantage. Besides money, the benefit can take the form of protection, special treatment, commendation, promotion, or favors.
Nigeria is frequently rank as one of the most corrupt nations in the world. Its abundant natural resources are being exploited by some privileged few while the majority suffers abject poverty. In spite of a series of laws and reforms directed at waging war against corruption and campaigns against corruption by both government and non-government organizations (NG0s), corruption still reigns in Nigeria and has become part of Nigerian culture. The Association of Nigerians against Corruption (ANAC), founded in 1984 at Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, is one such NGOs campaigning against corruption through a series of seminars. About 1000 Nigerians have joined the vanguard, between 1984 till date, by taking an oath to refrain from corrupt practices for the rest of their life. ANAC focuses on appealing to the minds of individuals and capitalizing on the participants’ faith by requiring that they take voluntary public oath against corruption.
WHAT IS ANAC?
The Association of Nigerians against Corruption is non-political, non-religious, and non-ethnic. The objectives for which the association is registered as a Non- Government Organization (NGO) are the following:
To campaign against bribery and corruption in all its ramifications in Nigeria.
To imbibe in Nigerian youths in colleges, polytechnics, universities and other tertiary institutions in Nigeria the virtues on corruption free society.
To encourage Nigerian youths in higher institutions in Nigeria to make public declaration against bribery and corruption.
To encourage other Nigerian adolescents in all walks of life to make public declaration against bribery and corruption.
To organize workshops, conferences, seminars, symposia, public lectures to sensitize and raise public awareness on bribery and corruption and the need to shun bribery and corruption and all related vices in Nigeria.
To promote and support other groups and organizations engaged in activities similar to the ones being pursued by the association in Nigeria and others in Africa and the world.
To research, procure, publish and disseminate information, research findings on the negative impact of bribery and corruption on Nigerian nation and its people.
To conduct, support, and promote any other activities which the Board of Directors may deem appropriate for achieving its objectives.
Membership to ANAC is free and open to all Nigerians 17 years of age and above. Membership is attained by making public declaration against bribery and corruption as follows:
I…………….from today and for the rest of my life, do sincerely and solemnly promise never to offer bribes to or accept bribes from anyone, and not to engage in any corrupt practices. So help me God.
There is no one solution to the problem of corruption in Nigeria. The government has its role to play alongside the civil society. Each anti-corruption organization should have a focus. The Association of Nigerians against Corruption (ANAC) directs its attention to getting individuals to reject corruption hence the idea of appealing to individual’s mind set starting from the grass-roots level.
ANAC was founded in 1984 as a non-government organization to campaign against corruption from the grassroots level (www.anachq.org). The campaign continues by mapping Nigeria into six operational zones as seen in Figure below.
Figure 1. ANAC Operational Zones in Relation to Nigeria’s States.
Each zone is represented by a zonal director reporting to the headquarters at Efon-Alaaye, in Ekiti State of Nigeria. The urge to shun corruption begins at the individual level. ANAC has extended its campaign strategies to both secondary and elementary schools for youths of ages 6 to 17. ANAC is conducting workshops and seminars in churches and mosques. In doing so ANAC acknowledges the role of religion in peoples’ lives and will be able to connect to the way religion is experienced and can support anti-corruption. ANAC is also engaged in grass-roots campaign by going into the market places, motor parks, and other public places where people who could not have the opportunity of attending the seminars could be reached. ANAC’s headquarter shall eventually house an Academy for Character and Leadership Development.
ANAC’s Publication on Combatting Corruption
Oluyitan, Funso E. (2017). Combatting corruption at the grassroots level in Nigeria. Palgrave-MacMillan, NY. 130 pp.
DOI: 10.1007/978-3-318; Print ISBN: 978-3-319-44855-8
Online ISBN: 978-3-319-44855-8.
Editorial Review at the back of the book:
Examines social, political, and economic causes of corruption in Nigeria, tracing how corruption has evolved from the colonial period to the present day.
Addresses the role of religion in the success of anti-corruption programs.
Examines an in-depth case study of a successful grassroots effort to engage individual citizens.
Offer concrete policy recommendations for grassroots activities and government.
This book examines public oath taking as an anti-corruption strategy that has been implemented with successful results in Nigeria and that has applications for other countries struggling with similar problems, The author of the book is the founder of Association of Nigeria against Corruption (ANAC), the NGO that piloted the oath taking program - in which people swear publically not to either take or receive bribes. Drawing on the experiences of the program and interviews with a number of ANAC participants, the author sheds light on some of the dynamics that underlie corruption, the potential of oath taking, and the importance of grassroots efforts and individual moral agency as forces of change.
About the author:
Dr.Funso E. Oluyitan is retired professor of communications. A graduate of Bowie State University, USA. He earned a Master’s degree in Public Affairs/Journalism and a Doctor of Education degree in Instructional Technology (Radio and Television) from Indiana University, USA. In 2015, Oluyitan additionally earned a PhD in Leadership and Change from Antioch University, USA. Dr. Oluyitan is also the author of Africa Yesterday and Today (2007)