The Senate Committee Chairman on Anti-Corruption and Financial Crimes, Senator Suleiman Abdu Kwari, has commended the board and management of the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission, (ICPC) for their implementation of the 2020 Budget, and commitment to ensuring that corruption was minimized to the barest minimum in the society.
Senator Kwari stated this during the Senate Committee oversight visit to assess the Commission’s 2020, and first quarter 2021 budget performance, which also aimed to acquaint them of challenges facing the Commission.
Speaking during the visit, the Chairman, ICPC, Professor Bolaji Owasanoye, SAN, outlined the 2020 achievements of the Commission to include assets recovery and seizure, prosecution of cases and convictions, assessment of MDAs on the Ethics and Integrity Compliance Scorecard, Virtual and physical training programmes, etc.
He revealed that many federal agencies had approached the Commission to collaborate in mitigating the spread of corruption in the country including the National Social Investment Office, the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC), Federal Road Safety Commission, NEPZA, amongst others.
The ICPC boss informed the visitors that the Commission was currently focusing on the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) and the Nigerian Customs Service (NCS), adding that ICPC had just concluded discussions with the Nigerian Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI) to look at the oil and gas sector, especially with regard to losses that are coming from there and other areas that would increase revenue generation for the Nigerian economy.
On why the Commission was not requesting special crimes courts for corruption cases, Prof. Owasanoye explained that while that was the desire of the Commission, due process was being followed by working with the Attorney-General to present an Executive Bill to the National Assembly.
The Director of Finance and Accounts department, Mrs. Victoria Ayeni, later presented a detailed breakdown of the 2020 Budget performance to the Committee.
The highlight of the visit was a facilities tour of the Forensics Laboratory and ongoing projects within the Commission’s premises.