We’ve received 1,381 whistleblowing information, secured 3 convictions – CSO

We’ve received 1,381 whistleblowing information, secured 3 convictions – CSO

By Ruth Oketunde/Philomina Attah, Abuja.

 

The Whistleblowers Anti-corruption Reporting Network (WARN), a civil society organisation (CSO), says it has received 1,381 whistleblowing information and has supplied the information to various anti-corruption agencies in the country.

 

The Executive Director of WARN, Mr Gabriel Onwe, said this at the one-year anniversary of the organisation, on Wednesday in Abuja.

 

The event, which has “Corruption Must Go; Blow the Whistle” as its theme, was attended by representatives from various anti-corruption agencies, government institutions and others stakeholders.

 

Onwe said that the whistleblowing information supplied to the anti-corruption agencies had facilitated the conviction of three persons for their crimes.

 

He added that the information had also resulted in recovery of movable and immovable assets, worth millions of naira, including cash, houses, plots of land and vehicles, wrongly appropriated by public officers.

 

The executive director, who expressed dissatisfaction with the dwindling moral values among Nigerians, said that WARN would continue to promote the National Ethics and Integrity Policy of the Federal Government.

 

He recommended that the Federal Government should establish a whistleblowing unit in all Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs), to strengthen its fight against corruption.

 

Onwe also called for the suspension and indictment of public officers, who were under investigation, in accordance with the extant civil service rules.

 

“WARN found that some civil servants serve conviction terms and return to work as if nothing has happened.

 

“Such persons should be flushed out of the system, in accordance with extant laws.

 

“We have communicated a list of such persons to the government,” he said.

 

Mr Mainsara Umar, the Director, Legal Transformation and Corporate Service, National Commission for Colleges of Education in an interview, advocated the creation of special court to handle anti-corruption cases.

 

“The Federation Government and National Assembly should go beyond pronouncements on the fight against corruption.

 

“Let us have anti-corruption court in Nigeria to handle cases of anti-corruption.

 

“It should be a court of summary trial, whereby once you file a case, it takes a maximum of three to six weeks to get judgment,” he said.

 

He underscored the need to review the whistleblower policy to give room for more protection of whistleblowers.

 

According to him, this will encourage more people to come forth with necessary information that with aid the fight against corruption in the country.

 

Umar urged all Nigerians to make positive and useful contributions to the advancement, progress and well-being of the community where they resided.

 

He said that the citizens should render assistance to appropriate and lawful agencies in the maintenance of law and order, while strengthening the fight against corruption.

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