Shina Abubakar, Osogbo
The Independent Corrupt Practises and Other Related Offences Commission, ICPC, has urged religious leaders to partner with the commission in spreading anti-corruption messages at mosques and churches.
Speaking at a one-day workshop organised for Muslim and Christian clerics at the commission office in Osogbo on Wednesday, Osun State Resident Anti-Corruption Commissioner, Demola Bakare said the society respects imams and pastors as spiritual leaders, hence the decision to partner with them in tackling the menace.
He stressed further that, the fora was aimed at “gingering religion institutions to assist in mainstreaming behavioural change/value of integrity and anti-corruption into the society”, adding that leaders of religion should speak more about the impacts and consequences of corruption to their congregations.
His words, “Because of the respect given to pastors and imams by members of their respective congregation, it was important for them to be part of the Anti-corruption campaign.
“As spiritual leaders, you should use the opportunity of the constant interface with the masses in churches and mosques to preach behavioural change that would entrench the practice of integrity in the society, resulting in a better Nigeria”.
Meanwhile in his lecture, titled, “Expected Role of Religious Leaders in the Fight against Corruption”, ICPC’s Sulyman Laaro, said the commission recognised clerics as a major shareholder in the crusade against corruption and believes that they are an important channel of spreading the anti-corruption messages to the grassroots, as most Nigerians professed either the Islamic or Christian faith”.
“You are to speak the truth and disassociate yourselves from being used by the political class at the expense of the poor in the society. As religious leaders, you must spearhead a moral revolution and ethical reorientation for the nation. You are the embodiment of godly virtues and should lead by example”, he added.
Speaking on behalf of other participants, The Imam of Alekwuodo central mosque, Osogbo Alhaji Hafeez Adediran commended ICPC for organising the lectures for leaders of religion, adding that the lecture was timely and expository because it gave participants the opportunity to learn more about the anti-corruption-campaign as pursued by ICPC
Also, the Chairman of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) in the state, Pastor Amos Ogunrinde, promised to further spree