The Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami SAN, has commended the efforts by the present administration on preventive measures against corrupt practices and recovery of looted, carted and stashed asset both home and abroad.
The AGF in his welcome address delivered at the United Nations Convention Against Corruption Peer Review of Nigeria by Myanmar and Cote D’Ivoire in Abuja, reiterated that in the fight against corruption, Nigeria has put in place various policies with a view to ensuring sanity in all sectors.
These policies amongst others includes: National Policy on Justice Sector Reform, National Policy on Bureau of Public Service Reform and the National Anti-Corruption Strategy, which was recently validated and adopted and also in the process of receiving approval of the Federal Executive Council in order to perfect it as a working document.
He appreciated the fact that the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crimes (UNODC) which is the Secretariat for the implementation, has put a lot of efforts in the peer review process, especially in the development of the omnibus software for the self-assessment checklist.
The Minister explained that Nigeria is not new in the review process, particularly for its consistence with guidelines because it has successfully passed through the first cycle as a reviewed and reviewer country.
Speaking on the sideline of the event, the Focal Person of the United Nations Convention Against Corruption (UNCAC), Tukur Modibbo, stated that the fight against corruption is very crucial in any democratic process and not only to democracy but also crucial to development issues of any country.
He noted that dividend of democracy and the benefits from the government cannot get to the people without fighting corruption, more especially in public affairs, stressing that corruption has the tendency and capacity to impede and create barrier between the government and the people.
Modibbo further explained that the review process, though done in line with the UNCAC, is to see Nigeria’s level of compliance with certain global best practices as far as institutional framework and implementation are concern.
He however said that the benefits of the review is mutual and non-adversarial, so that countries could be rated but does not mean that, is to apply sanctions but meant to share mutual experience and the core observation of the lapses in each other’s system.
In her remarks, the Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice Officer of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, Jennifer Sarvary Bradford explained that the fight against corruption is long and that it takes a lot of efforts, perseverance.
She described it as an anchor, saying; that is the beauty of the review mechanism.
SEYI ANJORIN, Abuja