Anti-corruption: EFCC Chief Outlines Three-pronged Agenda In New Year Message

The Executive Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Ola Olukoyede, has outlined a three-pronged blueprint aimed at driving the Commission’s mandate in its fight against corruption.

Olukoyede unveiled the blueprint on Thursday while delivering his New Year message to management and staff at the Commission’s corporate headquarters in Abuja.

The Chairman explained that the first plank of the agenda focused on the mandate of the Commission, noting that the major objective of the war against corruption and financial crimes was to drive economic development and create wealth and job opportunities for the populace.

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“We need to come to these realities and operate by them. Our nation is in dire straits. We need to continue to do everything possible to stimulate the revenue profile of Nigeria. There is no Agency of government as crucial to the nation’s quest for growth and development as the EFCC. We have all it takes to bring up the profile and developmental index of our nation”, he said.

The second plank of the policy, Olukoyede revealed, is putting modalities in place for running the administration and governance of the nation at various levels in a most responsible, accountable, and transparent manner, as well as building and promoting the international image and reputation of Nigeria in the eye of the world as a country that is worthy of attracting foreign direct investments.

He emphasised that, to achieve all these, preventive mechanisms against corruption, adherence to the rule of law, and engagement of diverse publics in the nation in the fight, are imperative.

He equally emphasized the need for a transactional credit system as a potent means of keeping corruption at bay and noted that the preventive modality is the centerpiece of its new engagement. “We are already building strength in this area through restructuring of the layers of the Commission”.

The Commission’s chief further talked about the review of the arrest and bail guidelines, which he said were “informed by the need for us to conform with international best practices in law enforcement”, adding that as a civilized anti-graft agency, arrest and bail would henceforth be done in line with the rule of law.

Mr. Olukoyede, who also strongly reiterated the issue of discipline, integrity, and sense of responsibility in the way the Commission does its work, highlighted public opinions about the conduct of some of its investigators, which are adverse.

“The craze and quest for gratification, bribes, and other compromises by some of our investigators are becoming too embarrassing and this must not continue. Let me sound a note of warning in this regard. I will not hesitate to wield the big stick against any form of infraction by any staff of the Commission. The Department of Internal Affairs has been directed to be more ardent in its work and monitor every staff in all their engagements. The image of the Commission is too important to be placed on the line by any corrupt officer”, the chairman said.

While noting that management is “mindful of the increasing need for the welfare of staff”, Olukoyede assured that steps are being taken in this regard, and though he did not give specifics, he said, “the new year promises to bring smiles on the faces of staff across all the Commands”. He however reminded staff that to whom much is given, much is expected.

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