By Peter Duru, Makurdi
The Chairman of the Independent Corrupt Practices and other related offences Commission, ICPC, Prof. Bolaji Owasanoye has urged the Anti Corruption and Transparency Units, ACTUs, of Ministries, Departments and Agencies, MDAs, to step up their efforts at ensuring a corruption- free public service in Nigeria.
Prof. Owasanoye who gave the charge Wednesday in Makurdi at a two day training on the National Ethics and Integrity Policy, NEIP, Constituency/Executive Projects Tracking Initiative, CEPTI, and Roundtable Dialogue on Ethics and Integrity Compliance Scorecard, EICS, organised by the Commission for North Central Zone, encouraged the ACTUs to support the initiatives and structures put together to check corrupt practices in the MDAs.
Represented by a member of the Board of the Commission, Yahaya Dauda, the Chairman said the training was put together to help the ACTUs seamlessly accomplished their mandate in the fight against corrupt practices.
He noted that the focus of the training which attracted over 50 participants from 27 MDAs would be to equip ACTUs executives with the basic knowledge of the NEIP and how they could contribute towards promoting the seven core values contained in the policies at their various MDAs by imbibing and transmitting the core values in their daily lives and transmitting same to their colleagues.
He said “This training will also focus on equipping you, ACTU executives with the knowledge of another major anti-corruption strategy of the ICPC, the Constituency and Executive Projects Tracking Initiatve, CEPTI and how you can play pivotal roles in ensuring the success of this laudable initiative launched in April 2019. It is designed to restore transparency, probity and citizens ownership of public projects funded from public funds duly appropriated. The CEPTI is a project redemption instrument that identifies and tracks constituency and Executive projects implementation and performance from 2015 to date.”
He stated that participants would also “engage in understanding the Ethics and Integrity Compliance Scorecard, EICS, as a value re-orientation tool in the public service. The EICS developed in 2015 by the ICPC in collaboration with Justice for All, J4A, programme of the British Government Department For International Development, DFID, seeks to evaluate the performance of MDAs through the ethics and integrity compliance standards based on Key Performance Indicators, KPIs, and sub indicators to ascertain strengths, failures and vulnerabilities of systems and processes with a view to re-engineering a more viable public service.”
The Chairman pointed out that the roundtable would provide ICPC and ACTUs the opportunity to take stock, share experience and evaluate their journey so far “in the deployment of the Ethics and Integrity Scorecard within the service to appreciate areas of strength and vulnerability so that we can make adjustments in areas where indeed we need to up the ante in the war against corruption.”
According to Prof. Owasanoye, “the ACTUs have been and would continue to be a vibrant tool of diminishing corruption in the public service of Nigeria especially at the Federal level. We on our part, will continue to build the capacity of ACTUs to enable them achieve the mandate for which they were established. It is for this reason that we organized this training and a roundtable which will take place across the six geo-political zones of the country.”
Earlier, the resident Anti-corruption Commissioner for Benue State, Mr. Menge Tiku, expressed hope that at the end of the training, members of the ACTU in the various agencies would be well equipped with the requisites skills and knowledge in combating corruption in their organizations.
“All hands must be on deck, to ensure that we eliminate corruption as we fight to create and sustain corruption free and transparent working environment in all government MDAs,” he said.