By NEWS AGENCY OF NIGERIA

The Independent Corrupt Practices and other related offences Commission (ICPC) has renewed its alliance with the National Anti-Corruption Coalition (NACC) as part of efforts to mobilise action against corruption in the country.

Secretary to the anti-graft commission, Mr Clifford Oparaodu, said this in Abuja at a one-day virtual sensitisation session for NACC members on the fight against corruption.

The secretary was represented by the Director of Special Services Department ICPC, Mrs Grace Agha-Ibe.

Oparaodu noted that the NACC was initiated as a platform for interested NGOs to apply to partner with the commission by harnessing the huge potentials of vital segments of society toward the eradication of corruption.

“The commission believes that a coalition of organisations working together to achieve a common objective around the issue of corruption and good governance will go a long way in educating the public.

“And mobilising them for the fight against corruption.

“NACC was conceived as a strategy of collective ownership for the crusade against corruption.

“It is premised on the fact that more can be achieved in the fight against corruption if all stakeholders participate in eradicating it from the nation.”

He listed the objectives of NACC to include increasing public sensitisation to the fight against corruption; empowering civil society groups to demand accountability and transparency in governance and facilitating public dialogue on anti-corruption strategies.

“Since the formation of the coalition, there have been several engagements such as capacity building, extending donor grants for grassroots trainings, tracking constituency and executive projects.

“Also, advocating for behavioural change using the National Ethics and Integrity Policy (NEIP) and joint media campaigns with the commission, etc.”

Oparaodu noted that the commission had also partnered with different NGOs in their own initiatives.

He gave examples to include the Accountability Icon Awards and the Anti-Corruption Stars Awards for teachers, parents and students, among others.

According to him, the commission is engaging the NGOs in the distribution of publications, participation as resource persons at Summits and Workshops as well as co-hosting of events, etc.

“This is because we recognise the independence of members of the NACC and will support them in their initiatives to fight corruption as long as it is within the powers of the commission.

“Today’s meeting is to renew the interactions and collaborations we have with NACC members and review it once again.

“Especially, as we have many new members outside of the terms of the partnership —”the role of CSOs in the partnership and the role of ICPC in NACC”.

Oparaodu emphasised that the commission valued the partnership as the growth and development of any nation is tied to the commitment of different stakeholders.

The Acting Director of Public Enlightenment Department of ICPC, Mrs Azuka Ogugua in a paper presentation, reiterated the commission’s commitment to work with NACC in its anti-graft war.

Ogugua, in the paper titled: “The role of CSOs in the Fight Against Corruption and their Partnership with ICPC”, warned against mismanagement of funds by members of NACC.

According to her, membership does not confer immunity or any privileges against criminal prosecution.

“Any member who receives funds from the commission should render detailed account of such funds.

“Members may seek the commission’s assistance in obtaining grants but such assistance is subject to the discretion of the commission.

“Members shall also render annual reports of activities to the commission.”

She said that the commission had an obligation to invite the member to join in the execution of constituency projects.

“ICPC may initiate projects of which execution will involve coalition members.

“In such instances, the commission shall provide funding to the extent of such involvement.

“The commission, may, subject to availability of funds, sponsor fully or partially projects initiated by members of the coalition,” Ogugua said. (NAN)

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