By Chioma Onuegbu – Uyo

THE Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission, ICPC, and the National Orientation Agency, NOA, have demanded the collaboration of key stakeholders to sensitise the citizens on implementation of National Ethics and Integrity Policy, NEIP, aimed at rejuvenating Nigeria’s lost core values of honesty and integrity.

Chairman of ICPC, Professor Bolaji Owasanoye (SAN), who spoke in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State capital at a one- day stakeholders dialogue, for South South zone 11, comprising Akwa Ibom, Cross River and Rivers States, said NEIP was initiated in the year 2020 in recognition of the pivotal role value re- orientation plays in the fight against corruption.

Owasanoye who was represented by board member of the ICPC, Dr (Mrs) Grace Chinda,
noted that the sensitizarion dialogue involves all segments of the society, especially the youths and promotes 7 core values of human dignity,

His words, “The National Ethics and Integrity Policy is a child of necessity. It was conceived out of the urgent need to resuscitate and rejuvenate our lost values of honesty and Integrity as a nation.

“The values of yester-years of truthfulness, nationalism, and respect for human dignity have been lost on us, that is why corruption has become so rampant in the Society.

“It is imperative to note that no matter the measures put in place for effective implementation of NEIP, the efforts would not yield the desired results unless you the key stakeholders embrace, own the policy and further sensitize your various constituents on the 7 core values, the aims and objectives of the policy.

“It is a fact that Nigeria is not lacking in Laws and policies aimed at curbing corruption and indiscipline. Perhaps what is lacking is Implementation and effective enforcement, based on well-designed and implementable Standard Operational Procedure (SOP). This is the difference between the NEIP and previous similar policies that have gone moribund and obsolete”

In his remarks, Director-General of NOA, Dr. Garba Abari who was represented by Akwa Ibom State Director of NOA, Mr. Enoh Uyoh stressed that the importance of the citizens sensitization on the implementation of NEIP could not be over emphasized as the policy aims at re-awakening their consciousness to the age-long cherished values that have eroded the present generation.

Abari who expressed the determination of his agency and the ICPC to drive the policy to citizens with the view to changing the narratives that has tended to portray the nation and its citizens as corrupt, appealed to the key stakeholders and participants to help government to give the policy widespread publicity.

“We must not only have political faith in our government, but, we should help it to fulfill its promises by performing our own responsibilities as patriotic citizens. For any nation to develop there must be national values or ethics.

“Citizens must be guided to adopt these values and attitude. National ethics regulates the life a nation and help to achieve its goals and objectives. In Nigeria, the core values are encapsulated in the 1999 constitutition (as amended) chapter 2, section 23”, he noted.

Abari added that Government on its part would do what it has promised on significant issues that affect the people, stressing, “The existential reality and trending issues of Kidnappings, agitations, cultism and drug abuse, to mention a few, needs the concerted effort and cooperation of citizens with relevant institutions to overcome them”

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