NIESV seeks evaluation certificate for public officers in asset declaration
AS a new administration is mounting the stage; members of the Nigerian Institution of Estate Surveyors and Valuers (NIESV) have advocated that public office holders should accompany their asset declaration documents from Code of Conduct Bureau with an evaluation certificate to discourage anticipatory declaration.
They argued that assets declaration and confiscation of property from corrupt individuals have been shrouded in secrecy, adding that asset declaration without a valuation certificate amounts to non – seriousness in the fight against corruption by the authorities.
NIESV President, Mr. James Omeru who made the call while speaking with journalists in Abuja, last week urged President Mohammadu Buhari, his Vice Prof. Yemi Osinbajo and other public office holders to ensure that they declare their assets at assumption and before leaving office in order to checkmate corruption.
His words: “In our system, when people are coming into office, they tend to declare over and above what they don’t even have in anticipation of what they will be able to make before they leave office, so you see people who do not have even N1million in their account declaring N5billion in anticipation that before they leave office they would have made up to the amount they declared in their business which is the government office they occupy.
If you make it compulsory for evaluation certificate to accompany the assets declaration, the Valuation Report will indicate clearly, the type and nature of Asset, the location (with photographs) and value.
This will discourage false and anticipatory declaration.” Omeru urged the Code of Conduct Bureau to make it compulsory for all public officers to declare their assets.
“If the process of asset declaration must be credible and taken seriously, you cannot declare assets in a vacuum, assets declaration must be accompanied by evaluation certificate, we have been persuading the Code of Conduct Bureau that they make it compulsory for all public officers to declare their assets on coming into office and while leaving office, and that they do an evaluation to accompany such assets declaration in order to discourage anticipatory declaration,” he said.
Omeru who expressed worries over the level of corruption in Nigeria aided by greed, said that NIESV would partner with the incoming administration to get public officers to do valuation while declaring their assets adding that if the incoming administration is serious about corruption, the Estate Surveyors and Valuers is the key to fighting corruption in Nigeria.
According to him, properties confiscated by both EFCC and ICPC should be properly valued and managed or disposed to bring transparency and timeliness to the process.
He noted that the body would partner with the incoming administration on infrastructural management in terms of road, railway construction, and public buildings.
“The problem with us as a people and government is that while we keep on building new physical assets such as public buildings, schools, roads, airports, seaports, etc, little or no attention is paid to maintaining the existing ones.
Estate surveyors are always very interested in sustaining the value of assets, and that is why we are the only professionals in the built environment that have the specialty in the act of property and facility management.
“We are prepared to partner with the incoming government to put an enduring facility/property management policy in place to stem this tide of national wastes.
Land reform must empower people by giving them title to lands if you must improve the Nigerian economy, all these issues must be given priority attention.”
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