The Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) is set to tackle the padding of personnel costs in government ministries, departments and agencies.
Chairman of the Commission, Professor Bolaji Owasanoye, made this known at a one-day stakeholders’ meeting held with officials of Federal Tertiary Teaching Hospitals, Medical Centres; Permanent Secretaries and representatives of the Budget Office at the ICPC headquarters in Abuja recently.
Owasanoye said, “The essence of the meeting is to proffer a solution to all infractions from the institutions to block loopholes in the system. We don’t take pleasure in embarrassing anyone. Our duty is to help government retain money that she was losing. But we will not hesitate to take the enforcement option when that becomes necessary. In any case, the Commission has mapped out strategies it will employ to make padding of personnel costs by MDAs a thing of the past”.
He advised that the agencies should go back and remove every infraction or padding that may have been inserted into their 2020 budget, saying that it would help clean-up personnel payroll and reduce costs for government.
The ICPC Chairman added that the Commission was not “interested in witch-hunting anybody”; rather, all that it was doing was aimed at ensuring institutions of government adhere to the guiding principles of the law.
Owasanoye further directed that all the agencies should submit their actual nominal rolls to the Budget Office and the Accountant General’s Office, while also sending a copy to the Commission.
On his part, the Permanent Secretary, Special Duties, of the Federal Ministry of Finance, Dr. M.K. Dikko, reiterated the commitment of the ministry to the fight against corruption.
He assured that the MDAs would cooperate with the Commission to help reduce their bloated personnel costs which had become a source of concern to the government.