The Civil Society Legislative and Advocacy Center (CISLAC) during the week convened a one-day high level workshop to share international anti-corruption best practices to address emerging issues in the war against graft.
Speaking at he event, the Executive Secretary of CISLAC, Auwal Ibrahim Musa said the project supports the efforts and contribution of various states and non-state actors in enhancing transparency, accountability and participatory governance in combating corruption.
“Since the issue of corruption remains persist in Nigeria , putting in place adequate and effective anti-corruption response mechanisms with a view towards tackling the menace remains looming.
“Despite emphasis being placed in the public sector which accounts for an estimated 70% of corruption cases in Nigeria, enthroning integrity and minimizing corruption in both public and private sector continues to remain a priority, featuring prominently in the form of programmed and policies of successive government administrations”, Auwal stated.
According to him, the workshop was aimed at galvanizing efforts towards building integrity and emerging beat practices on curbing corruption by leveraging on international frameworks to promote sustainable development in Nigeria.
During the gathering, it was emphasized that a recent report carried out by Price Waterhouse Coopers (PWC) on impact of corruption on Nigerian economy has expressed worry that if urgent and responsible steps are not taken, it will cost the country up to 37% of Gross Domestic Product by 2030.
It could also be recalled that in February 2018, Transparency International (TI) released the Corruption Perception Index (CPI) in which Nigeria slipped further down by 12 points in the global rankings, an indication that no appreciable and lasting progress has been made in the fight against corruption in Nigeria.
Auwal also stressed that corruption threatens virtually everything that is precious in the constitutional order noting that, it has been implicated in fueling maladministration and blatantly undermines the democratic ethos as well as rule of law.
He therefore called on the Legislative and Executive arms of the government to close ranks and work together in order to surmount the monumental challenges associated with fighting corruption in Nigeria.
In her keynote address, the TI Chair, Delia Matilde Ferreira Rubio, without any fear or favour, the task in the war against corruption is to ensure that every transaction is conducted as transparently as possible, build strong institutions, relentless people and stop the flow of stolen assets.
She explained that it is unacceptable to look at corruption as a normal way of life thereby adding to the impetus of nipping corruption in the bud.
Delia described impunity as another major obstacle in tackling corruption all over the world especially those associated with high profile individuals.
In his goodwill message, Sr. Kole Shettima, the African Director of McArthur Foundation said the fight against corruption is hinged on the need to advance the quality of lives of Nigerians and therefore called for all hands to be on deck in order to achieve the desires results.
Also, lending her voice, a former Minister of Education and convener of the Bring Back Our Girls (BBOG) campaign, Dr. Oby Ezekwesili maintained that, if the world had embraced the idea of openly discussing, exposing and naming corrupt practices and individuals, the task before the Transparency International would have been much more easier.