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SERAP urges re-visitation of power sector cases

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Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) has urged the authorities to re-visit and fast-track prosecution of all corruption cases in the power sector and recover stolen public funds.

The Lagos-based rights group stated this yesterday at the Policy Dialogue on Promoting Transparency and Accountability in the Judiciary, Education and Electricity sectors it organied in Abuja, in collaboration with the MacArthur Foundation, United States of America.

Specifically, SERAP urged the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami; the Acting Chairman, Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Ibrahim Magu; and the chairman, Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC), Prof. Bolaji Owasanoye, to spearhead the re-visitation of all cases of corruption in the sector.

The group also urged ICPC to make public the status of the investigation and recommendations for prosecution (if any) on the Abuja Electricity Distribution Company (AEDC) Recruitment/Jumbo Pay Scandal, given that the Federal Government and the public have 40 per cent stake in the company.

“EFCC should re-visit the (Ndudi) Elemelu committee’s report on the rural electrification scandal and ensure that all suspects are brought to justice.

“The EFCC and ICPC should scrutinise, prioritise and conclude pending investigations of all power sector-related cases and make the report public (where applicable), as well as bring to justice perpetrators.

“They should also probe metering and billing fraud and corruption. Most consumers are unhappy with their billing methodology and feel short-changed by the operators,” it stated.

In the 15-point Programme for Promoting Transparency and Accountability in the Judiciary, Education and Electricity sectors in Nigeria launched at the Policy Dialogue, SERAP also asked Malami to request the report of the House of Representatives Committee that probed government spending in the power sector from 2000 to 2007, make the report public and ensure appropriate legal action against anyone suspected to be involved in corruption.

The dialogue, which discussed how to effectively implement SERAP’s core reports on corruption in the judiciary, education and electricity sectors, was attended by the civil society, ministries, departments and agencies (MDAs), among others.

Among those in attendance were the Special Adviser to President on Infrastructure, Ahmed Zakari; Special Adviser to Vice President, Nikki Umeh; and representative of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Fasina Olakunle.


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