Roughly 400 billion Naira spent on bribes each year
Taking into account the fact that nine out of every ten bribes paid to public officials in Nigeria are paid in cash and 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 400 billion Nigerian Naira (NGN), the equivalent of $4.6 billion in purchasing power parity (PPP). This sum is equivalent to 39 percent of the combined federal and state education budgets in 2016.
Bribe-payers in Nigeria spend one-eighth of their salary on bribesThe average sum paid as a cash bribe in Nigeria is approximately NGN 5,300, 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 NGN 18,900. 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 NGN 28,200 annually on cash bribes ― equivalent to 12.5 per cent of the annual average salary.
Nigerians consider bribery the third most important problem facing their country
The above findings could explain why, after the high cost of living and unemployment, Nigerians
consider corruption to be the third most important problem facing their country, well ahead of the
state of the country’s infrastructure and health service. Public sector bribery is not the only form of
corruption affecting Nigeria: the prevalence of bribery in relation to selected employees of private
companies is 5.5 per cent, meaning that bribery is also significant in the private sector in Nigeria.
However, the payment of bribes to public officials is the most familiar and widespread form of
corruption directly experienced by the population and the one that most affects the lives of ordinary
Law enforcement and the judiciary are areas of particular concern
Police officers are the type of public official to whom bribes are most commonly paid in Nigeria. Of all adult Nigerians who had direct contact with a police officer in the 12 months prior to the survey,
almost half (46.4 per cent) paid that officer at least one bribe, and in many cases more than one since
police officers are also among the three types of public official to whom bribes are paid most
frequently (5.3 bribes per bribe-payer over the course of 12 months) in Nigeria. At the same time, the
average bribe paid to police officers is somewhat below the average bribe size.
Although fewer people come into contact with judiciary officials than with police officers over the
course of the year, when they do, the risk of bribery is considerable: at 33 per cent, the prevalence of
bribery in relation to prosecutors is the second highest, closely followed by judges and magistrates, at 31.5 per cent. The experience of corruption is encounters with public officials whose duty it is to
uphold the rule of law can lead to the erosion of trust in public authority.