Distance Yourself from Corrupt Elements, Olukoyede Tasks Civil Society Organizations

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Executive Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Ola Olukoyede, has charged Civil Society Organisations, CSOs, across the country to distance themselves from corrupt elements who advance the cause of bad governance with no consideration for the plight of Nigerians bearing the brunt of corrupt practices.

He gave this charge in Abuja on Wednesday, May 15, 2024 when he received in audience, executives of the Conference of Northern States Civil Society Networks led by the Chairman, Ambassador Ibrahim Waiya.

According to the EFCC boss, “whatever that is not expedient should be abhorred. It is appalling to see Civil Society Organisations veer off their mandate and be supporting bad governance. There are instances where some state governments deliberately set up and fund Civil Society Organisations to attack agencies set up to enforce anti-corruption laws”, he said.

Olukoyede frowned at the tendencies of some CSOs championing ill-motivated causes, especially offering defences to individuals and groups indicted for corruption. “Please, let them know that such tendencies are against progress and development of the nation. Their platforms are not meant for such engagements”, he said.

He said it was very important for actors in the civil society space to understand that their mandate required them to play very critical roles in the development of the society. “The CSOs are critical to the fight against economic and financial crimes. Some of the high -profile cases the Commission has prosecuted was made possible by the efforts of some of the promoters of these CSOs. They are even playing the roles of prosecution witnesses in support of anti-graft agencies. That is why within six months of my appointment, I have met with the coalition of CSOs twice. To me, we cannot do it all alone. We surely need to collaborate to achieve the mandate”, he said.

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The Chairman specifically commended President Bola Ahmed Tinubu for taking crucial measures on the issue of Consumer Credit and Students’ Loan Scheme, which he said have great propensity of curbing corruption. “50 percent of my job would have been done by the time these policies come on stream. Imagine workers getting car loans and mortgage loans at 3, 4 and 5 percent to be repaid in the next 30 years. It will reduce corruption to the barest minimum”, he said.

Earlier, Waiya described the Conference as a regional network of non-governmental, non-partisan, not for profit, non-ethnic and non-religious platform, with the sole objective of advocating for the best practices of democracy, accountable governance and increased development of Northern Nigeria and beyond through policy advocacy, collaboration and partnership.

He said the group brought together various civil society networks operating in the Nineteen Northern States and FCT, under a common umbrella, with a clear focus of promoting synergy among different states-based networks, to collectively aid in achieving socio-economic, political, infrastructural and sustainable development in the region and Nigeria at large.

He specifically commended Olukoyede for his sterling fight against Naira abuse and noticeable paradigm shift in the entire war against economic and financial crimes. “We want to commend you for your bold moves in moving the anti-corruption fight forward”, he said. He called for greater penetration of the grassroots to ensure that false narratives and campaigns against the Commission are neutralized.

He called for closer collaboration with the EFCC to ensure optimal results in the fight against corruption.

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The post Distance Yourself from Corrupt Elements, Olukoyede Tasks Civil Society Organizations first appeared on National Insight News.

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