Gowon, whose government ruled from 1966 to 1975, made the statement at the 8th Commonwealth Regional Conference for Heads of Anti-corruption Agencies in Africa hosted by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) in Abuja.
The president, however, admitted that anti-corruption war is not easy to fight because it affects different branches of national lives.
After inaugurating the building said to be worth N25 billion, President Muhammadu Buhari went on inspection.
He also challenged participants at the conference to come up with effective measures not only to prevent looting of public funds but also recovery of stolen money, and its use for the people.
"The difference between the money we need to deliver the hopes and aspirations contained in our Commonwealth Charter of 2013 and the commitment we all made when we signed up to the UN SDGs of 2015 and the money we have is the sum equivalent of that which is siphoned off by the corrupt practices of the greedy, the uncaring and the pernicious few", she said. It is not for alone that is why I am saying Nigerians must take ownership of the fight because you can not leave it [alone] to the anti-corruption agencies.
"It is my hope and expectation that the judiciary, which is a critical stakeholder and partner in the war against corruption, would continue to collaborate with the Executive to bring corrupt people to book".
This is the only way we can ensure victory.
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"I took the trouble to visit the headquarters of the EFCC, I wanted to see what will be the mode of hospitality for some of our leaders who sooner or late will pass through the doors of that attractive building not far from here", he said.
"It has become the norm".
He however maintained that, "we never intended, and we are not engaged in witch-hunts, but we are determined within the laws to call people to account".
Magu said there had never been a more focused and committed team in the ant-corruption anywhere in Africa than the current leadership in Nigeria.
He therefore appealed to Nigerians to support regulatory agencies like EFCC, because fighting corruption was everyone's concern.
The president noted that a number of nations had signified interest to help Nigeria tighten its laws and enter into agreements with the country to repatriate not only stolen funds but to make the culprits face due process of law.
It is my pleasure to perform the opening ceremony of the "Economic and Financial Crimes Commission's Headquarters".