By Umar Muhammad Puma
Chairman, House of Representatives Committee on Anti-Corruption, National Ethics and Values, Rep. James Abiodun Faleke has said that Independent Corrupt Practices Commission (ICPC), Code of Conduct Tribunal and Code of Conduct Bureau are the worst funded anti corruption agencies in the country.
Rep. Faleke who spoke at the on-going budget defense of Ministries Department and Agencies of government said the committee is working towards amending the anti corruption agencies act to make them financial autonomous.
He appealed to the Federal Government to increase funding of the anti corruption agencies in the country, if the war on corruption must be won.
According to him, “If the President wants to fight corruption, he should make the anti corruption agencies to be totally independent and put them on the first line charge” saying that “success can’t be achieved if the anti corruption agencies had to beg the finance ministry to release their overheads.”
The ICPC in 2013 had N4.4 billion budget. In 2014, it requested for N8.6 billion but was allocated N4.6 billion by the budget office.
Calling for special scale salary to boost their moral, he said most of the anti corruption agencies operate from rented apartments in most states of the country. “ICPC ought to have offices in all 36 states of the federation including Federal Capital Territory but as we speak, they only have 13 offices.
“Ironically, ministry of works carried out evaluation and submitted that N200 million is needed to renovate the ICPC headquarters but the agency is only provided with N10 million in this year’s budget to carry out renovation, how is that possible”, he queried.