Communique Issued at the end of a Two Day Training on Anti-Corruption Monitoring and Reporting

COMMUNIQUE ISSUED AT THE END OF A TWO DAY TRAINING ON ANTI-CORRUPTION MONITORING AND REPORTING ON 20th– 22nd MARCH 2018 AT THE ROCKVIEW HOTEL ROYALE ABUJA

In its continued effort to sustain interest and drive attention to the anti-corruption agenda, the Building Ownership for Transparency and Accountability in Governance and Service Delivery project driven by HEDA seeks to develop platforms to educate the public in understanding their role in demanding accountability, probity, transparency, participation in governance, and bringing public attention at the national and international levels to high profile anti-corruption cases, audit reports and parliamentary committee reports in a bid to ensure they reach prosecution and possibly conviction. As part of its engagement strategy, a two day training session was designed to facilitate an exchange between CSOs, Government Agencies, and Labour activists who serve as anti-corruption agents within establishments. The session was held in partnership with the National Orientation Agency and had in attendance representatives from the NOA, Labour Union, Media and CSOs.

The participants were unequivocal in their agreement that the issue of corruption is actively being discussed in the public domain both in terms of news coverage and the numerous trainings/workshop being delivered on a timely basis. To improve the quality of the dialogue, it is critical to develop a methodology, set parameters for engagement, ask empirical questions, and push the conversation to identifying sustainable solution. In addition to this, it’s critical to set a clear methodology of measuring government’s performance in fighting corruption whilst highlighting success stories particularly in the asset recovery effort.

Observations

  • The 1999 constitution clearly says all forms of misconduct is defined as corruption. The conceptual framework used for the discussion should capture corruption as an abuse of public role or resources for private benefits
  • Fighting corruption is primarily the responsibility of the government hence the need to address the lack of transparency in the anti-corruption effort in a comprehensive and integrated approach
  • Citizens in every society have a moral and legal duty to report corrupt practices to the relevant agencies
  • Public institutions such as the NOA should be visible in setting the right examples and demonstrating the capability to engage citizens in setting a different tone and mindset in the fight against corruption
  • Eradication of corruption should not be an ongoing effort- a deadline must be set. The government must return to the core responsibility of setting a developmental agenda
  • The duty to report crime is critical in weak states because the inability to improve rule of law and governance reinforces underdevelopment and vice-versa
  • The duty to report crime and corruption is enhanced when the state demonstrates political will to hold wrongdoers accountable; and creates a dependable disclosure framework

Recommendations

  • Citizens should build the momentum to bring the government and law enforcement systems in conformity with their duties to account for, trace, track and confiscate stolen assets within the system
  • Citizens should pressure government to take action on corruption cases through organised protests and demonstrations
  • The anti-corruption agenda should be seen as an emergency programme with a timeline and a means to nation building
  • Build a development agenda with a vision that links the anti-corruption struggle to an economic recovery plan
  • Strengthen anti-corruption agencies to function at maximum capacity
  • The NLC to convey a meeting between labour and CSO to strategise on how to address the issues of corruption in Nigeria
  • To reactivate the mandates of student and labour unions as institutions that challenge the government on areas of good governance and transparency
  • Organise CSOs and labour movement to mobilise the citizens, and compel government to act
  • Corruption attacks governmental structures, revenue base and democracy. Proceeds must therefore go into arresting and ameliorating the damage that has occurred
  • Address the fundamental structural issues
  • Putting up evidences that can be used for advocacy is lacking in Nigeria, therefore we need a systemic evidence based approach to tackling corruption issues
  • The public should cover stories that focus on enablers in the corruption ecosystem
  • An immediate reversal in the mindset of the citizens on corruption perception
  • Organise citizen’s engagement and agitation with publicly available data and take the matter to court if necessary
  • Citizens need to get involved in asking critical questions in a systematic approach. Government can only be accountable if there are citizens demanding information.

 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *