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Corruption and courage in Nigeria

This week, a Nigerian senator representing the governing party blew the whistle on an amazing story: Beyond their $2,000 per month salaries, senators in Nigeria have been receiving about $37,500  per month  to spend on expenses, however they choose. At that rate, a two-term senator can amass $3.5 million in a country with annual per capita income of $2,175. 

“It was a moral issue,” said Shehu Sani, the senator in question (pictured above). “You could take care of over 100 graduates from a senator’s salary,” he said. “The legislature should deliberate on the abject poverty and unemployment in the country.”

Think Mr. Sani is popular with his colleagues today? But this is not just a story about corruption, about people going into government to make big money they can hide from the public. It’s also a story about personal and political courage and the fight  against  corruption  in one of Africa’s most economically and politically important countries. This is how nations make progress.  

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