Group urges collective effort against corruption
This position was taken by participants at the three days 12th Annual Nigeria Public Sector Anti-Corruption Conference (NIPSAC) organised by Africa Development Studies, Transparency and Anti-Corruption Campaign in Africa in collaboration with NIPSAC, for all levels of Director, Heads of Departments, Senior Accountants, Auditors, Members of Anti-Corruption Units (ACTU) from all Ministries, Department and Agencies, Military and Para military organisations in Nigeria, with the theme: “ Towards National Integrity: Vision, Vigilance and Action, “held in Benin City Edo State.
Speaking on the topic: “Identifying the Challenges of Public Servants in tackling and preventing Corruption in Nigeria, a resource person at the programme, Michael Chizea, disclosed “the present situation in Nigeria reveal corruption has become an acceptable way of life of every Nigerians.”
He said, “corruption is carried out in over-inflated contracts with self motives, contracts are executed and re-executed countless times, monies given to public officers for their respective populace, organisations and sectors are diverted to personal accounts, and most times, laundered to foreign accounts.”
Commenting on the effects of corruption, he listed them as under-development, lack of basis infrastructure, misuse of natural resources, inadequate power and water supply, mediocrity in professional and leadership positions, defective leadership out-puts, fuel scarcity in an oil producing nation.”
As a way forward, he said: “Salary and benefit of public service should be enhanced, public service should be encouraged and protected by legislation, policy and administrative practices, implementation of Fiscal Responsibility Act and Public Procurement Act, public accountability mechanisms such as audit, monitoring and evaluation should be strengthened and many other solutions.”
On his part, Acting Registrar, WellSpring University, Benin, Kingsley Aduga, while speaking on, “ Combating Corruption in the Public Service-A Proactive Approach,” stated that the fight against corruption was a fight for change.
Aduga’s disclosed that whether the change was gradual or radical, “it must be proactive and or combination” to reduce corruption in Nigeria. Earlier in his keynote address, Commissioner for Justice/Attorney General of Edo State, Henry Idahagbon, who was represented by Kenneth Ugiagbe, said: “Corruption is the root cause of infrastructure decay and underdevelopment in Nigeria.”
In his opening remarks, the Chief Executive Officer of NIPSAC, Victor Walsh Oluwafemi said that there was need for political will to fight corruption in Nigeria and other countries in West Africa.