By; PATRICK TITUS, Uyo.
Independent Corrupt Practices and other related offences Commission (ICPC) said the slow criminal judicial process is a major challenge to the enforcement of its functions to nip corruption in the bud in Nigeria.
ICPC official, Jimoh Sulaiman stated this in Uyo during a one-day grassroots anti-corruption seminar for community development associations (CDAs) in Akwa Ibom State.
According to Sulaiman, the Commission has numerous pending criminal cases in court involving hundreds of persons across the socio-economic divide of the country. To this end, he called on the judiciary to quicken the process to enable the Commission do better in its task of returning the country to the path of rectitude.
It is noted that aside illiteracy and ignorance, the greatest threat to national security and development is corruption, a hydra-headed monster that has eaten deep into the fabric of the national ethos.
In his welcome address on the occasion, ICPC zonal commissioner, South South office in Uyo, Mr. Henry Emore said the system is skewed in such a way that sincere and honest people find it difficult to emerge in leadership.
“For us to effectively combat corruption, we must go back to the foundation and not to focus on the bush fire approach by fixing the effects only,” Mr. Omore said.
In the same way, “a virile, purposeful vision leadership must be in place. A whole gamut of sectors must be unlocked ranging from targeted education that will produce independent and employable graduates, security, strong enforcement will, selfless service, as well as amending the constitution to make politics less attractive. A strong culture of honesty pays in business rather than deviating from the norms”, he added.
The Zonal Commissioner who was represented by Mr. Sakaba Ishaku, said the ICPC has opened up corridors of opportunities to all willing parties to partner with the commission in the fight against graft in the country.
He commended Anti-corruption and Transparency Support Initiative (ACTSI) a state-based NGO, for partnering the commission to organize the seminar which drew participants from other community development associations across Akwa Ibom state.
Earlier in his address the ACTSI team leader, Mr. Edidiong Sambo said the one-day campaign was conceived in partnership with the ICPC based on the belief that the fight against corruption cannot be won without active involvement of family heads and community leaders in view of their roles in community development and leadership.
He said that (ACTSI) was formed in 2002 and registered with Akwa Ibom State Ministry of Youth and Sports in 2003 as youth organization, registered with the Corporate Affairs Commission in 2007 as non-governmental organization.
ACTSI mission is to foster a collective action in fighting corrupt and other unethical practices geared towards restoration of integrity in the Nigerian society for sustainable growth and development.
According to Mr. Sambo, ACTSI target is to reach ten million Nigerians on the Anti-Corruption crusade and other development oriented initiatives through sensitization, advocacy, information, education and communication (IEC) activities before 2020.
Delayed judicial process bane of anti-corruption fight – ICPC
By; PATRICK TITUS, Uyo.