Cameron calls Nige­ria, Afghanistan ‘most cor­rupt coun­tries’

Pakistan Observer - - FRONT PAGE -

LONDON—Bri­tish Prime Min­is­ter David Cameron called Nige­ria and Afghanistan “pos­si­bly the two most cor­rupt coun­tries in the world” in in­ad­ver­tently pub­lic re­marks Tues­day, but hailed their lead­ers’ planned at­ten­dance at an an­ti­cor­rup­tion sum­mit in London.

He was caught on cam­era mak­ing the re­marks to Queen El­iz­a­beth II and Arch­bishop of Can­ter­bury Justin Welby at an event at Buck­ing­ham Palace. “We’ve got some lead­ers of some fan­tas­ti­cally cor­rupt coun­tries com­ing to Bri­tain,” Cameron said, re­fer­ring to the an­ti­cor­rup­tion sum­mit he is host­ing on Thurs­day. “Nige­ria and Afghanistan, pos­si­bly the two most cor­rupt coun­tries in the world,” he said.

Welby, who worked as an oil ex­ec­u­tive in West Africa be­fore join­ing the church and who has also un­der­taken con­flict res­o­lu­tion work in Nige­ria, noted that “this par­tic­u­lar pres­i­dent is ac­tu­ally not cor­rupt”. “He’s re­ally try­ing,” Cameron agreed, and the queen noted to Welby: “He is try­ing, isn’t he?”

It was not clear to whom they were re­fer­ring, but Nige­rian Pres­i­dent Muham­madu Buhari and Afghanistan’s Pres­i­dent Ashraf Ghani are both due to at­tend the sum­mit.

Buhari has em­barked on a wide­spread anti-cor­rup­tion cam­paign since tak­ing of­fice one year ago, and is due to give a speech on the is­sue in London on Wed­nes­day. In Afghanistan, Ghani also made a prom­ise to rein in run­away cor­rup­tion when he was elected in 2014.—AFP

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