Obasanjo decries impunity in government, backs ICAN on accountability index
Former President Olusegun Obasanjo yesterday expressed concern over what he described as continuous impunity in government at all levels, insisting that the country must be sanitised with right leadership and governance to move forward.
He also warned that God would judge those who try to run the country aground with impunity and other forms of ungodliness.Obasanjo spoke in Abeokuta, Ogun State, when President of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria (ICAN), Isma’la Zakari, paid him a courtesy visit.
Zakari, who attended the investiture of Deacon Atilade Bolarinwa as the 15th Chairman of ICAN, Abeokuta District, disclosed that the institute would publish its first accountability index report in September.
Obasanjo said Nigeria could not continue with impunity and think all would be well with the citizens and stressed the need for strong institutions to enhance the country’s development.He pointed out that emphasis should always be placed on leadership, governance, development, value and culture.
His words: “We don’t even look at ourselves and that is the unfortunate thing. We should look at ourselves and say yes, where did we go wrong and have the humility to say wherever we have gone wrong, we are ready to make amends.
“We go on with impunity as if we created ourselves and the country. My prayer is that those who try to run this country aground with impunity, we leave them in the hands of God and God in His infinite mercies knows what to do.
“We cannot go on with impunity and think that it will all be well. So, ICAN’s idea of accountability index should be welcomed by all men and women of goodwill in this country.”Obasanjo further commended ICAN for the initiative but cautioned that it must be carried out conscientiously and neutrally to attain acceptance internationally.
Speaking, Zakari said the accountability index was launched last year as part of ICAN’s efforts to encourage accountability in the federal, state and local governments.He said it was also aimed at improving the quality of governance and compliance with the Fiscal Responsibility Act 2007, as well as tackle corruption through the engagement of public sector professionals.
He added that it would also facilitate the implementation of the international public sector accounting standards in governance and ensure timely completion of public sector budgets and audited financial statements.
According to him, the accountability index was a relevant, innovative and timely contribution to accountability in public finance management and good governance practices in the country.Zakari, who stated that the first accountability index report would be published in September, said it would be widely publicised across the country.
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