…urges FG to implement procurement act for transparency
From Raji Bello, Sokoto
A civil society group, ActionAid Nigeria, says it worried with the accusations and indictments of corruption on institutions and individuals entrusted with the responsibilities of addressing the excruciating poverty problems in the Niger Delta regions and other parts of the country.
In a press statement titled: ‘ActionAid Nigeria’s Position on Taming the Gale of Corruption in Nigeria’, and signed by its Communication Coordinator, Lola Ayanda, a copy made available to our Correspondent said the development has further corroborate its study carried out in 2015, that revealed strong correlation between Corruption and poverty in Nigeria.
The civil group noted that corruption should be seen and addressed as anti-development issue, in which governments at all levels should pay significant attention to social provisioning as a way of serving as disincentives for citizens to engage in corrupt behaviours.
“These current gale of accusations and indictments being experienced in the past one week further corroborate a study carried out by ActionAid Nigeria in 2015 revealing the strong correlation between Corruption and poverty in Nigeria.
“We like to infer from the study and in line with what is currently playing out with the EFCC, FMoJ, NDDC, NSITF, MoND, NASS, that the country may be heading in the wrong direction to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), with the leadership crisis, regional conflicts and state of anarchy.
“It is also worthy of note that though NDDC has the mandate to fill the development gaps in the Niger Delta, the FGN still has the responsibility to do more by ensuring the region overcome the challenge of infrastructural deficit, environmental degradation, loss of means of livelihood etc.
“Over the years, trillions of naira has been appropriated through budgets towards the development of the country. Yet the state of roads, electricity and water supply, schools, and hospitals remains inadequate to meet even the basic needs for a large part of the population.” The statement reads.
It called on the Federal Government to implement all aspects of the Procurement Act, including constituting and inaugurating the National Procurement Council as well as ensuring similar effective implementation at State level.
It also advised the Federal Government should ensure that all anti-corruption agencies are autonomous with functional boards for effective oversights and given all the powers and resources needed to discharge their mandates of fighting corruption.
The CSO however called for renewed investments in civic education and re-orientation for both public office holders and the citizenry to promote the social contract needed to reduce citizens and leadership’s propensity to engage in any form of sharp practices and corruption.