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Corruption is Human Rights Issue - EFCC and Partners


A conclave of organizations with mandate for human rights enforcement, good governance and anti- corruption, today affirmed that corruption remains the greatest threat to the wellbeing of citizens and should be treated as a human rights issue. This was the submission of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, National Orientation Agency, National Human Rights Commission, United Nations Development Programme and Human and Environment Development Agenda at a partnership dialogue which held Thursday January 19 at the head office of the EFCC in Abuja.
According to them, the time has come for a shift in the narrative on the fight against corruption away from stories of arrests and prosecution, to looking at the cost of corruption on citizens. According to Olanrewaju Suraju of HEDA, fighting corruption as human rights violation will starkly express the magnitude of the malaise in the consciousness of the people. He expressed delight that the United Nations Development Programme, UNDP, has graciously offered to support a project that will occasion a paradigm shift in the way corruption is fought in Nigeria.
The Director-General, NOA, Garba Abari advocated greater synergy among the agencies in the fight against corruption.
According to him, “Corruption fight is for everyone and there is the need to come together to fight it. We have identified areas where we can partner. We have 813 offices across the country. We speak all languages and so, we can use our entire platform to assist EFCC in sending messages to all nook and cranny in the country”.
He said NOA was ready to fine-tune and re-invigorate the strategy on corruption fight across the country towards ensuring that the present administration succeeds in its anti-graft crusade.
“We have everything to take all the messages”, he assured.
Speaking, the Acting Executive Secretary, NHRC, Oti Ovrawah said, “Corruption, if not tamed will rotten the country”.
Expressing the commitment of the NHRC to the fight, Ovrawah said the Commission had experts to deal with every human right aspect and expressed readiness to train EFCC personnel in such aspect.
She called for a review of the education system with a view to catch the children young adding that, the war against corruption is one that must be followed to the end.
Kehinde Osotimehin, who led the UNDP team said, “We are working with a number of CSOs and we will partner with NOA and Human Rights Commission on the proposed anti-corruption conference this year. We will fund the conference and ensure its success.”
Osotimehin admonished all stakeholders to key into anti-corruption campaign adding that the fight should be total and it’s for all.
Responding, Magu expressed delight over the zeal of the visitors for their initiative and promised to give them all necessary support.
While stressing the need to work together to fight the menace he said, “The war against corruption is not for the EFCC alone, but for all Nigerians.
“We need to bring all relevant agencies in the fight against corruption together. EFCC is ready to work and be guided. Corruption has no religion, tribe, ethnicity or colour and so it affects everybody”.

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