Top 10 Most Corrupt States in Nigeria (2023)

Corruption is a serious problem in Nigeria that is currently affecting every aspect of society and hindering the country’s development. The Transparency International’s 2020 Corruption Perception Index ranked Nigeria as the 136th least corrupt nation out of 180 countries, with a score of 25 out of 100. This indicates a high level of corruption in the country. In this blog post, we will be highlighting the top 10 most corrupt states in Nigeria, based on data from various sources including Transparency International, Nigeria Bureau of Statistics, and Centre for Democracy and Development.

corrupt nigerian states


The definition of Corruption is the abuse of power entrusted to one for private gain. It can take many forms, from bribery and embezzlement to nepotism and fraud. In Nigeria, corruption is a major issue that affects every aspect of society, from government to business to everyday life. The problem is so severe that it has been identified as one of the major obstacles to the country’s development.

In this article, we would talk about the top 10 most corrupt states in Nigeria and the impact it has on the citizens of these states.


Here are the states in Nigeria with the highest rate of corrupt activities this 2023.


Lagos ranks as the most corrupt state in Nigeria with the highest rate of bribery and corrupt practices in almost every government and private establishment within the state. Although, Lagos state is known to be one of the most economically developed states in the country and it is also one of the most populous state. However, Lagos state is not immune to corruption and the state has faced its fair share of corruption scandals. Some examples of corrupt practices in Lagos include embezzlement of public funds, bribery, and nepotism.

There have been several high-profile corruption scandals in Lagos in recent years, which have involved government officials and politicians. For example, in 2018, a former governor of Lagos state, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, was investigated for alleged money laundering and fraud. Additionally, there have been several cases of public officials being arrested for embezzling public funds in the state. The impact of corruption in Lagos can be seen in the state’s public services and infrastructure. Due to the mismanagement of public funds, many public services such as healthcare and education are underfunded and of poor quality.

Furthermore, infrastructure projects such as roads and housing are often delayed or not completed due to corruption. To combat corruption in Lagos seems very difficult, due to the way the state is run by an influential politician. The government must take steps to increase transparency and accountability in government. This includes implementing stricter laws and regulations, as well as enforcing existing ones. Additionally, the government must make sure that public officials are held accountable for any corrupt practices. It is also important for citizens to be active in holding their leaders accountable and reporting any corrupt practices they may witness.


Located in the Niger Delta region, Bayelsa is known for its high levels of corruption, with many government officials and politicians being involved in corrupt practices. The state has a long history of corruption, due to its involvement with oil wells and government contracts. This has led to a lack of trust in the government and a lack of accountability for corrupt practices.


Delta state is also known for its high levels of corruption, with many government officials and politicians making untold and untraceable wealth from corrupt activities. The state is also rich in oil and natural resources, which has led to a concentration of wealth in the hands of a few individuals. This has created an environment where corruption is rampant, with many government officials and politicians taking advantage of their positions of power to enrich themselves.


Rivers like many other Nigerian states, has also been plagued by corruption for many years. There have been various reports and allegations of corruption involving government officials and agencies in the state. Some of the most notable examples include:

  • In 2008, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) arrested and charged the then Governor of Rivers State, Peter Odili, with money laundering and corrupt practices.
  • In 2013, the then Governor of Rivers State, Rotimi Amaechi, was accused of embezzling over $10 billion in state funds during his tenure as governor.
  • In 2015, the EFCC arrested and charged the then Commissioner of Finance in Rivers State, Mr. Isaac Abbot, with embezzlement of over NGN 4.5 billion of government funds.

These are some examples of the high-profile cases of corruption that have been associated with Rivers state in the past. It’s also important to note that these are just allegations and the officials may be innocent until proven guilty in court. However, it is worth noting that corruption is a complex issue that comes in different ways, and can be difficult to quantify or measure.


Abia ranks as the most corrupt Nigerian state in the south-eastern geo-political zone/region. While they have one of the most economical viable city in Aba, this state has been associated with corruption for many years. Government officials, private citizens and even agencies have been dully involved in bribery and corrupt practices. Some examples include:

  • In 2016, the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) arrested and charged the then Governor of Abia State, Theodore Orji, with embezzlement of over NGN 7 billion of government funds.
  • In 2017, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) arrested and charged the then Commissioner for Lands, Survey and Physical Planning in Abia State, Mr. Uchechukwu Ogah, with embezzlement of over NGN 2 billion of government funds.
  • In 2018, the EFCC arrested and charged the then Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs in Abia State, Dr. Acho Ihim, with embezzlement of over NGN 1 billion of government funds.
  • In 2020, the EFCC arrested and charged the then Commissioner for Finance in Abia State, Obinna Oriaku, with embezzlement of over NGN 3 billion of government funds.

One thing you should be aware of is that Nigerian states are governed by different political parties, so the present state of corruption might be different from the past. Official reports from reputable anti-corruption agencies like the EFCC may provide more accurate information about the states with the most corruption cases in Nigeria.


Corruption in Kano state is so bad that a video surfaced of Kano state governor allegedly receiving stacks of dollar notes from an individual in his office. Although, Kano is seen as one of the most populated states in the federation, people still live in abject poverty in this state. The high level of corruption among politicians in this state has made it difficult for this state to thrive economically, since politicians use public funds to enrich themselves.


Many politicians and government personnel participate in corrupt activities, and Sokoto state is notorious for having high levels of corruption. Natural resource abundance in the state has resulted in a concentration of wealth in the hands of a select few people. As a result, corruption is rife and many politicians and government employees are enriching themselves through their positions of authority.


It is important to remember that corruption is a problem that affects everyone and it is the responsibility of all citizens to work together to combat it. To stop corruption in Nigeria effectively, we must all take a stand against corruption and demand accountability from our leaders. Only by working together can we hope to create a more just and equitable society for all Nigerians.


The Author

Mike Fakunle

Mike Fakunle is a freelance writer, web designer, SEO specialist, and digital marketer with a dab of creativity.

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