In its continuing effort to frontally confront corruption and bring it to the barest minimum, Nigeria’s premier anti-corruption agency, the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC), has broken new grounds in its activities culminating in the recovery of N77.04 billion – assets from operations, interim and final forfeiture in the year 2019.
This was disclosed by the spokesperson for the Commission, Mrs. Rasheedat Okoduwa, mni, during a media briefing at the ICPC’s headquarters in Abuja, recently.
Giving the breakdown of the Commission’s achievements, Mrs. Okoduwa revealed that N1.16 billion liquid cash was recovered and domiciled in the Treasury Single Account, while N32.03 billion was recovered in land, building and vehicles.
She further disclosed that another N41.98 billion recovered was money restrained on review of Ministries, Department and Agencies (MDAS). According to her the money was the over-bloated personnel costs of some MDAs, which would have been misappropriated save for the intervention of ICPC.
The Commission’s spokesperson added that N0.767 billion was recovered from project tracking and N1.097 billion from completed projects on return of contractors to site as a result of the Constituency Project Tracking Group (CPTG) initiative which was launched last year. She noted that 424 projects were tracked.
Available statistics indicate that ICPC carried out 201 reviews of MDAs on their Personnel and Capital Fund Expenditure as well as conducted four system studies and reviews of MDAs in order to direct a change in the practices that encourage corruption, as well as two post-review checks and one Corruption Risk Assessment. Also, 280 MDAs were assessed on Ethics and Integrity Compliance Scorecard.
As part of its strategy to police public sector institutions through the instrumentality of the Anti-Corruption and Transparency Units (ACTUs), ICPC in the year under review inaugurated 69 ACTUs and carried out 146 ACTU sensitizations in MDAs.
The Commission, through its various public enlightenment and education platforms, is tackling corruption head-on by strengthening its participatory and attitudinal change programmes that involve Nigerians in order to enlist and foster their support. To this end, 15 and 73 additional Students Anti-Corruption Vanguard and Students Anti-Corruption Clubs were inaugurated respectively as well as 510 Education Sensitization Sessions which were conducted.
Remarkably, the Commission had a total of 22 Town Hall Discourse, 16 Panel Discussions, 16 Road Walks, one National Submit and National Conversation apiece.
Accordingly, 74 editions of Corruption Must Go (English and Wazobia), two audio jingles and two documentaries were produced as well as 16 and 17 television and radio appearances respectively; and two media roundtable.
The Commission also registered 210 news reports, produced three and four editions of ICPC news and Integrity House respectively, and 12 editions of e-newsletter.
On Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, it had 74,438 followers and the website had 1,027,032 hits.
Although, there is a very recent official pronouncement that the activities of the National Anti-Corruption Volunteer Corps (NAVC) have been suspended, however, the corps had six state chapters inaugurated, 9 training sessions and workshops were held with 1,826 volunteers enlisted.
Furthermore, during the year under review, the Commission received a total of 1,934 petitions as at December 31, 2019. Of this number, 580 investigations have been concluded, 83 cases filed in court and 25 convictions were secured. The spokesperson clarified that many of the petitions received did not fall under ICPC jurisdiction and were therefore not investigated but re-routed to the appropriate agencies.
Concluding the briefing, Okoduwa stated that the Commission started the year with a Board and Management retreat to set performance targets followed by capacity building for staff in the three functional areas of enforcement, prevention and public engagement against corruption. With an outlook for a more productive 2020, she added that the Commission was marching on and steadily winning the fight against corruption.