ICPC Chairman: Knowledge and Awareness of ICPC Act, Best Self-Gift for Corruption-Free Public Service

The Chairman of the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC), Dr. Musa Adamu Aliyu, SAN has applauded the Chairman and Board of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Civil Service Commission for commencing their tenure in office with a sign indicative of determination to give no room for corrupt practices and other related offences.

The ICPC Chairman, represented by the Acting Director, Public Enlightenment and Education Department of the Commission, Mr. Demola Bakare, praised the Chairman of the Board; Engineer Emeka Ezeh and the six Commissioners for their positive body language to the nation’s anti-corruption drive by purposefully inviting the ICPC to enlighten and educate them on corrupt practices and other related offences, especially as it relates to occupying echelon positions of the public service.  

In his Paper Presentation entitled “Code of Conduct for Public Servants: Aligning with the Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Act 2000 for Corruption-Free Public Service”, Mr. Bakare pointed the participants to the danger of not drawing clear boundaries between public office and personal cum vested interest. He stressed that conflict of interest compromises integrity, strips processes of fairness and equity, admits mediocrity, leads to abuse of office and climaxes in full-blown corrupt practices.  

He emphasised the need for public office holders to manage conflict of interest by carefully watching out for influences that may creep in to their decision-making processes from families and friends. He further sensitized the audience by outlining sections and penalties of offences as stipulated in the Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Act 2000 and touched on the seven core values of the National Ethics and Integrity Policy (NEIP).

In wrapping-off his presentation, Mr. Demola Bakare urged the Commissioners engage actively with the ICPC website and the Commission’s social media platforms so as to keep pace with the Commission’s activities. He further charged them to inaugurate the Anti-Corruption and Transparency Unit (ACTU) at the nearest possible time.

In his response, the Chairman Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Civil Service Commission Engineer Emeka Ezeh stated that the quest for his team to ensure a corruption-free tenure necessitated the request to have the ICPC make Paper Presentation at the 3-day retreat. He expressed his admiration for the ICPC’s thoroughness as regards handling petitions and investigations. He affirmed that the ICPC was poised to effectively deliver on tackling corruption in procurement processes going by his experience of how the Commission effectively handled such cases in the past.

Engineer Ezeh observed that in certain instances, civil servants pay high price and are sometimes considered foolish for being ethical. He further opined that naming and shaming, including activating administrative sanctions; may serve as a more effective deterrent strategy for offences bothering on unethical and corrupt practices in the public service.