National anti-corruption committee begins assessment of 30 MDAs
About 20 members of the Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) Committee on the Implementation of the National Anti-Corruption Strategy (NACS 2017-2021), have concluded assessment visits to over 30 pilot Federal Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs).
The assessment visit was to ascertain the extent of compliance and mainstreaming of the strategy in due process and due diligence in the respective MDAs.
Over 800 MDAs are expected to be assessed periodically.
The strategy, in addition to the Federal Government’s moral and administrative support, is funded by the European Union (EU), and managed by the British Council through the Rule of Law and Anti-Corruption (RoLAC).
Later, the Mac Arthur Foundation, through the Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD), joined in the funding process.
The committee members, who were divided into teams of six, undertook the monitoring visits between September 14 and 17 to some key MDAs, such as the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC); the Public Complaints Commission (PCC) and the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC).
Others are the Code of Conduct Bureau (CCB), the Bureau of Public Procurement (BPP); the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN); the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS); the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC); the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) and the Fiscal Responsibility Commission (FRC), among others.
The committee members had undertaken baseline visits to select pilot MDAs last year after which the report of the outcome was submitted to the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice (AGF), Abubakar Malami (SAN), for onward transmission to the Federal Executive Council (FEC).
The NACS was created by the Federal Executive Council in 2017 during its sitting presided over by the Vice President of Nigeria, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo (SAN).
Thereafter, the M&E committee, consisting of the Civil Society Organisations (CSOs), the media and top civil servants was constituted and inaugurated by the AGF in 2018.
The M&E, which was afterwards domiciled in the Federal Ministry of Justice, was later given a Secretariat at the Transparency Unit on Governance and Anti-Corruption Reforms (TUGAR).
The AGF is the chairman of the Inter-Ministerial Committee of the strategy (with five other Ministers) by design.
In the action plan of the NACS, there are thematic areas that the strategy is designed to address at institutional levels, cascading in sub -national governments.
Addressing the committee members before they embarked on the visits, the Chairman of the Committee, Mr. Andrew Gandu, represented by a member of the committee, who is a senior official of the Ministry of Communications and Digital Economy, Auta Yakubu; the Component Manager of the RoLAC, Mr. Emma Uche; a Deputy Director in the TUGAR, Mrs. Jane Onwumere, representing the Head, TUGAR, Lilian Ekeanyanwu, among others, urged the members to carry out a thorough exercise, bearing in their mind that they were on patriotic mission of fighting corruption in the country.
Also, RoLAC Programme Officer, Dala Pwanakei, paid tribute to the efforts of the National Programme Manager of the EU-RoLAC, Danladi Plang; the EU-RoLAC Consultant on the NACS, Dr. Mary Isabella Ada Chidi-Igbokwe; the Chairman of Technical Committee on the implementation of the NACS, Ladidi B. Mohammed, among others for their efforts in driving the strategy.
The officials also reminded the committee members of the need to engage the officials of the MDAs to align with the NACS by creating the needed sensitisation and awareness.
They also task them to fill copies of the questionnaires issued to them and submit their work ethics documents.
“You are enjoined to take this national assignment as a patriotic duty to your father land. Do it diligently,” Gandu appealed.
It is expected that the report of the last week’s monitoring/assessment of the M&E committee would be submitted to the AGF for onward submission to the FEC soon.
The NACS, which has its period of existence till the end of the year, is to be reviewed for another phase, The Guardian learnt.