The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC)’s Acting Chairman, Ibrahim Magu, has stressed the role of stakeholders as critical to winning the war against corruption in Nigeria.
“The fight against corruption is not for EFCC alone, but for all humanity and lovers of good governance because we may all be affected directly or indirectly”, he said.
Magu gave the charge in a statement of objective at the opening of a European Union funded project on “Support to Anti-Corruption in Nigeria” at the Chelsea Hotel, Abuja on Thursday, July 27, 2017.
The project tagged “Corruption and Human Rights in Nigeria: Realizing Fundamental Human Rights Through Multi-Stakeholders’ Fight Against Corruption” was organized in collaboration with UNODC; National Orientation Agency, NOA; United Nations Development Programme, UNDP; EFCC and Human and Environmental Development Agenda, HEDA.
According to the EFCC boss, “Fighting corruption is a very difficult task considering the numerous challenges and the inherent danger, but it is a sacrifice one must make. Therefore, consider it an honour to be among the few selected men and women of courage and integrity chosen for this onerous task of salvaging the nation”.
The anti-graft czar added that “the fight against corruption is a necessity in bringing Nigeria back to its former glory adding that, in the 70s and 80s education was affordable as the economy was much more stable”.
In bringing back the lost glory, Magu called on individuals to take ownership of the fight against corruption and urged the participants in the programme to cooperate with the facilitators and be receptive to new solutions and shared experiences.
In his opening remarks, Olanrewaju Suraju, Chairman, HEDA, placed emphasis on the urgent need for ethical and value reorientation in the fight against corruption.
“In order to succeed in the fight against corruption we have to dissect the root causes, motivations and attraction to corruption in order to provide the much desired outcome in freeing Nigeria from the ills of corruption”, he said.
According to him, President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration, identified corruption as one of the major issues surrounding Nigeria’s stunted economical growth with negative impact on the welfare of all Nigerians.
“The solution to corruption also has a flip side which is the human right dimensions to corruption and financial crimes as attention needs to be given to the persons accused of corruption and considerations taken so that their basic human rights are not infringed upon”, Suraju added.
Speaking, Dr. Garba Abari, Director General, NOA, commended the efforts of the EFCC, who he said was at the fore front of the fight against corruption in Nigeria. He pledged continuous support for anti-graft agency in achieving its mandate via the local assembly platform.
In fostering the awareness campaign of ‘Change Begins With Me’, Abari said that, the NOA was actively engaging Nigerians at the grass root level, the women groups, the students and community health workers among others.
“I read newspapers every day; I see that EFCC has taken up the challenge and is doing a great job in the billions of naira recovered from corruption proceeds’’, said the NOA boss.
Also speaking, Mr. Osita Okechukwu, Director General, Voice of Nigeria (VON) said “every human being has an element of greed but it is discipline that helps curtail it so that, it does not breed corruption”.
He observed sadly, the number of Nigerians living in Diaspora due to adverse effect of corruption that is impoverishing people. He threw the gauntlet on all public office holders that they should be responsible while in office and should submit themselves to be probed at anytime by the anti-graft agency in order to enhance accountability and transparency.
“On the record it is the brilliant ones that are quick to leave the country, but someday in the near future Nigerians will be proud to return back to their homeland due to the sustainable development”, Okechukwu opined. (EFCC)