- Joe-Odumakin preaches transparency, accountability
As part of efforts to curb corruption at Nigerian ports, an anti-corruption group, Eagle Eye Transparency and Integrity Initiative (EETAII) in collaboration with the Independent Corrupt Practices and other related offences Commission (ICPC) held a training programme for maritime stakeholders in Lagos, yesterday.
The event was focused on enhancing the war against corruption through education and collaborative efforts with law enforcement agencies and key stakeholders at ports.
Speaking at the event, the President of Centre for Change, Dr. Joe Okei-Odumakin, who was the keynote speaker, stated that tackling corruption in the country requires demonstrable will at the highest level of government and the willingness by the people to support the law enforcement agencies at the ports and the nation, at large.
Odumakin lamented that with the current terrible state of corruption in the country, one only needs to live in Nigeria for a short period to perceive the odour of corruption as it is evident in every sector and every part of the nation.
“We can no longer ignore the prevailing mass poverty, hunger, unemployment, decayed medical and educational systems, poor infrastructure and absence of social services, which are indicators of damaging effects of corruption,” she said.
Odumakin opined that there is no better time than now to own the War Against Corruption, urging maritime stakeholders to resist the temptation to remain silent while corruption erodes our basic values in the society.
Also speaking, an Assistant Chief Superintendent at the Lagos State Office of the ICPC, Mrs. Mary Omonayan urged participants at the event to play an active role in bringing about the desired change in Nigeria.
She identified transparency and accountability as key virtues even as she stressed the need for concerted efforts and mobilisation of broad-based interest groups to effectively fight the monster ‘corruption’ at all levels.
“Nigerians must cultivate the courage to be positively different and speak up against corruption,” Omonayan said.
She revealed that ICPC has been involved in public education and mobilisation on various platforms, such as; the National Ethics and Integrity Policy (NEIP), National Anti-Corruption Coalition (NACC), town hall meetings, religious leaders’ forum, National Values Curriculum, among others.
According to her, citizens’ involvement would provide everyone an opportunity to influence public decisions because the worst impact of corruption in Nigeria is the destruction of personal and national integrity.
Earlier, the National President of the EETAII, Comrade Anthony Shuaibu informed that EETAII is an organization registered with the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) and its objectives include; services through networking and collaboration, organizing regular educational and informative programmes, organize sensitisation programmes, training and community services, among others.
Shuaibu added that as part of its Corporate Social Responsibilities (CSR), the group embarks on advocacy and community mobilization with emphasis on fighting corruption in and outside the ports.
He added that, through hard work and honesty, the ICPC, recognized the group and granted them registration as a member of the National Anti-Corruption Coalition (NACC) being coordinated by the Commission.
Following ICPC’s partnership, he explained that the group began interfacing with relevant government agencies within and outside the ports, and developed an harmonious working relationship leading to successful conflict resolution among industry stakeholders.