The Executive Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Mr. Abdulrasheed Bawa, has been elected President of the Network of National Anti-Corruption Institutions in West Africa, NACIWA.
A statement on the Commission’s official Facebook handle reveals that Bawa was elected on Monday, 20 March, 2022, at the ongoing Annual General Assembly of the institutions.
TheFact Nigeria reports that NACIWA, a regional network created by national anti-corruption institutions at the initiative if the Economic Community of West African States, ECOWAS, was created in 2010, and serves as a forum for exchanges and consultations between national anti-corruption institutions in ECOWAS member countries.
The network is made up of fourteen (14) member-countries: Benin, Burkina Faso, Cape Verde, Ivory Coast, Ghana, Guinea Conakry, Guinea Bissau, Liberia, Mali, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone and Togo.
Bawa, while addressing the 5th Annual General Assembly meeting of the Network holding at Transcorp Hilton hotel, Abuja, called for stronger and more effective modalities aimed at stemming the spate of illicit financial flows and other corrupt tendencies in the region. This, he said, was a step in the right direction towards bolstering security and anti- corruption situations in the West- African sub- region.
Bawa noted that the ECOWAS sub- region is smarting from the throes of security challenges and stressed that efforts must be made to block leakages arising from illicit financial dealings.
“The ECOWAS sub- region is threatened by existential security challenges which may not be unrelated directly or indirectly to corruption. We must therefore intensify efforts to stem the spate of illicit financial flows within the sub- region including illicit flows by Politically Exposed Persons (PEPs)”, he said.
The EFCC Chairman also stressed the need for continuous efforts at amplifying effective collaboration and intelligence sharing in our quest to rid the sub- region of financial crimes while collectively addressing the security challenges prevalent in the sub- region.
Professor Bolaji Owasanoye, Chairman of the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences, ICPC, which is co-hosting the two-day meeting, decried the worsening security situation in the West-African sub- region and charged member states of NACIWA to ” criminalise corrupt practices and adopt legislative, police and technical measures for the prevention and detection of corrupt practices”.
Bawa succeeds the outgone President, Francis Ben Kaifala, Head of Sierra- Leone Anti- Corruption Agency, whose three- year tenure ends March 31, 2022.