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Group lauds MDAs’ accountability,  probity under PMB’s administration

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The Coalition of Civil Rights Groups (CCRG) has rated ministries, parastatals and agencies under President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration high on accountability, probity and transparency.

The coalition said it made this conclusion after scrutinizing policy formulation and implementation across the various MDAs.

Unveiling its interim report on Monday at a press conference in Abuja, President, Comrade Isaac Ikpa, said various indices indicate sustainable efforts towards building strong institutions capable of addressing corruption and other forms of societal ills that retards development.

According to the report, the implementation of the Treasury Single Account (TSA) has ensured that finances of MDAs are subjected to the best possible accountability procedures which have greatly reduced incidence of siphoning off government funds.

The report added that the implementation of Personnel and Payroll Information System (IPPIS) has blocked loopholes that hitherto cost the country billions of dollars.

The coalition also noted that high-profile politicians, civil servants and retired military officers have been prosecuted for corruption, securing convictions in a handful of cases.

The Coalition of Civil Rights Groups’ findings, therefore, invalidates Transparency International’s report for lacking evidence and “different from reality”.

The group revealed that there are political undertones to T.I’s low rating of Nigeria, noting that it is hinged on permutations towards causing a distraction for the president.

The coalition, however, advised the Federal Government to institute measures that would keep the citizens abreast of happenings in the polity with regards to the introduction of policies and programmes that affect their lives.

It also charged MDAs to respond to Freedom of Information request in a timely fashion and make such known to the general public in a bid to carry the citizens along at all times.

Read the full statement below.

Introduction:

The Coalition of Civil Rights Groups in fulfilment of its mandate of holding government accountable in governance assessed the Muhammadu Buhari administration to highlight the commitment towards good governance in delivering the dividends of democracy to the people.

The assessment entailed detailed scrutiny of policy formulation and implementation across the country’s various MDAs, emphasizing accountability, transparency, and probity. It also touched on the various programmes implemented by the Muhammadu Buhari administration regarding governance, the rule of law, and human rights.

The various social intervention programmes of the Muhammadu Buhari administration were also scrutinized in any objectivity manner, devoid of sentiments to put issues in proper perspectives.

The Issues:

There have been insinuations that Nigeria’s rule of law is selective – the rich and powerful do not play by the rules, which has fuelled corruption in the polity. This has indeed questioned the sincerity of the Muhammadu Buhari administration in the fight against corruption.

There were also insinuations that the operations of MDAs in Nigeria have been fraught with a lack of accountability and transparency, which has aided massive corruption and disregard for extant procurement laws in the conduct of government business.

The implementation of the rule of law was also questioned through allegations that the government has displayed total disregard for the rule of law through questionable actions that undermine individuals’ rights to express themselves on matters of national concern. There were also allusions to implementing a selective justice system targeted at perceived political opponents while shielding individuals and organizations with ties to the present administration from being held accountable for questionable transactions and activities that fuel acts of corruption and undermine sustainable growth and development.

This also on the heels that Transparency International in its yearly report stated that Nigeria had dropped two places down to rank as the world’s 34th most corrupt nation. While this position has been canvassed, the factors responsible were not adequately highlighted.

Findings:

The assessment report’s findings indeed brought up questions on how the Muhammadu Buhari administration has fared in the fight against corruption. Our findings revealed acts of political colourations that possibly influenced the perception that the Muhammadu Buhari administration is selective in the fight against corruption.

An analysis of the institutional framework in place negates the claims. This is on the heels that the framework is not subject to manipulations as the various mechanisms in place provide for checks and balances in the conduct of government business.

It was also discovered that the implementation of the Treasury Single Account (TSA) has ensured that finances of MDAs are subjected to the best possible accountability procedures which has greatly reduced incidence of siphoning of government funds while entrenching a regime of accountability in the disbursement of government funds for purposes intended.

The Personnel and Payroll Information System (IPPIS) was also identified as one of the measures implemented by the Muhammadu Buhari administration in tackling corruption in the system by blocking loopholes that hitherto cost the country billions of dollars.

Our findings also revealed the prosecution of high-profile politicians, civil servants and retired military officers for corruption and secured convictions in a handful of cases. His administration has also recovered billions of Naira in stolen assets from corrupt Nigerians.

Scores of corrupt politicians across party lines and government officials are currently undergoing trials for various forms of financial impropriety, thereby rating the Muhammadu Buhari’s campaign against corruption as the most intense the country has ever seen.

The Realities:

The Coalition of Civil Society Groups in the extensive analysis of the issues at stake states that what is being propagated in the public space is different from reality. The various indices indicate sustainable efforts towards building strong institutions capable of addressing corruption and other forms of societal ills that retards development.

As discovered in the analysis of issues, there are political undertones to rating the Muhammadu Buhari’s administration low in the war against corruption. This is hinged on permutations towards causing a distraction for the administration.

The Coalition of Civil Rights Groups’ position is that there has been an entrenchment of accountability and transparency in the conduct of government business. The loopholes for siphoning government resources have been blocked. This has also brought about accountability which remains the hallmark of the Muhammadu Buhari’s administration.

It must also be stated that there hasn’t been any tangible evidence that supports the claims of selective implementation of the war against corruption from our analysis. The bulk of the insinuations are hinged on hearsays and illogical conclusions, which remains questionable by all known parameters.

It is thus a statement of the fact that there hasn’t been an era in the annals of the country where the government has displayed an unalloyed commitment to the judicious putting use of resources of the country than now. And those in leadership positions have been tasked through various mechanisms to play by the rules.

Our position remains that the Muhammadu Buhari’s administration has not been found to promote corrupt practices. No record indicates systematic protection for individuals and organizations that runs afoul of the law.

Recommendations:

The Coalition for Civil Rights Groups as a result of the forgoing herby makes the following recommendations:

That the government must institute measures that would keep the citizens abreast of happenings in the polity with regards to the introduction of policies and programmes that affect ordinary citizens’ lives.

That the government must task MDAs to respond for Freedom of Information request in a timely fashion and make such known to the general public in a bid to douse tension and carry the citizens along at all times

Through its various MDAs, the government must provide accurate information on burning issues to allow the citizens to make their independent judgment on the government’s efforts in all sectors of the economy.

That the government must engage in town hall meetings with critical stakeholders to allow them to seek clarification on areas that requires attention and collective inputs.

That the government must address concerns in the public space in a most decorous manner without making allegations that smacks a mockery of the whole governance process.

Conclusion:

The Coalition of Civil Rights Groups concludes that the Muhammadu Buhari’s administration since inception has been at the vanguard of promoting accountability and transparency in the conduct of government business.

This has consequently led to an enviable level of accountability and transparency across the MDAs. Therefore, it remains acts of sabotage activities of individuals and organizations that rate the government low in accountability and transparency in governance in Nigeria.

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BUA Group Chairman’s Presidential Campaign Posters Flood Kano

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Campaign posters of the Chairman of BUA Group Alhaji Abdul Samad Rabiu have  flooded the city of Kano, indicating his interest under the banner of main opposition party Peoples Democratic Party PDP.

The posters sighted in various parts of Kano Metropolis on Wednesday may yet be a strong indicator that the business mogul would throw his hat into the ring for the 2023 presidential race.

Alhaji Adamu Maina Waziri  a Board of Trustees (BoT) member  of the PDP and Minister of Police Affairs under President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan recently said in an interview with Daily Trust  that the presidential ticket of the party will be zoned to the North due to an  understanding to that effect.

While some party members are in support of a norther ticket, it is understood that there are those who oppose it.
BUA Group Chairman will be eligible to contest for the presidency under PDP if eventually zoning to the North holds sway in the party.

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Buratai, Other Former Service Chiefs Have Passed Test, Ready To Serve Foreign Missions – Nigeria First

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The Nigeria First movement has welcomed the confirmation of former Chief of Army Staff, Lt. Gen. Tukur Buratai (rtd) and other immediate past service chiefs as ambassadors designate by the Senate.

By their confirmation, the group noted the ex-COAS and his counterparts have passed the test, “unblemish in character and therefore fit to serve as heads of our foreign missions”.

Th group made this known on Thursday in a press statement in Abuja signed by its president, Chief Philip Agbese.

Owing to their trackrecord from a highly professional background, Agbese expressed optimism that they will deploy their wealth of knowledge and experience to bear on their new assignments.

He, however, urged the Federal Government to ensure that the diplomats are deployed to countries where their impact will be most felt.

While commending President Muhammadu Buhari for finding the former military chiefs worthy, Chief Agbese added that he should deploy them to countries with the needed military technology relevant to Nigeria’s current security situation which will help improve military cooperation between the two countries.

Read full statement below:

On behalf of NIGERIA FIRST, May l commend the Senate for performing this important function. This is a patriotic act.

One of the important ingredients of democracy is the separation of powers.It is on this tripod of this power separation that good governance thrives. The confirmation exercise by the Senate is therefore, a confirmation that arms of the Nigerian government are working in the overall interest of national development.

Ambassadors are important in world affairs.

They represent and protect the interest and nationals of their states. They also initiate and facilitate strategic agreements ,treaties,conventions,promote information, trade and commerce, technology, friendly relations etc.Their negotiation skills and expertise are therefore significant in  meeting these functions.

Having been confirmed as Ambassadors,the next thing is posting to their respective states. By their confirmation, Lt. Gen TY Buratai (rtd) and others have passed the test as unblemish in character and therefore fit to serve as heads of our foreign missions.

It’s instructive to note that these Nigerians have been called from highly professional backgrounds for this important assignment. We are optimistic that they will  deploy their wealth of knowledge and  experience to bear on their new ssignments

We therefore call on the federal government to ensure that our diplomats are deployed to countries where their impact will be most felt. This can be done by  taking advantage of their background to decide which country each is posted to.

For instance, our immediate past service chiefs can be deployed to such countries where their military background becomes handy in negotiating military pacts  on behalf of our country more so that our dear country is passing through security challenges. As service chiefs,their involvement in the nation’s defence system must have placed them in a strategic position to further improve  our security architecture.

In view of their background, we are tempted to conclude that posting them to countries with  the needed military technology relevant to our  current security situation in the country will help improve military cooperation between the two countries.

This is why we passionately appeal that the background of the Ambassadors be used as a yardstick for their posting .This way,we will feel the impact of their representation.

Once again, we commend  the  Senate for performing this important assignment of their confirmation .

We also most humbly commend President Buhari for finding them worthy to serve as our representatives abroad .

Thanks and God bless you.

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Ambassadors Designate: Sowore Suffering From Failed Revolution Hangover – NICreL

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The New Initiative for Credible Leadership (NICreL) says Omoyele Sowore’s attempt to incite Nigerians in the diaspora against the ambassadors designate shows that he is yet to recover from his failed insurrection bid.

The group, in a statement on Wednesday, said the former presidential aspirant is suffering from a waned revolution hangover, one that has impaired his capacity to process ideas, thoughts, utterances and actions expected of right-thinking members of the society.

According to the statement signed by its Executive Director, Rev Steven Onwu, the NICreL urged Nigerians in the Diaspora to ignore Sowore, whom it noted, is goading them to possibly violate the laws in their countries of domicile while he shuttles between New York and Nigeria extorting high ranking persons through blackmail.

The group further cautioned Nigerians abroad to avoid anything that would lead to their repatriation to Nigeria and eventually become hirelings and rented protesters for Sowore’s failed revolution.

While describing the former service heads as worthy ambassadors who served the nation meritoriously as military chiefs, the group urged Nigerians to actively flag and report Sowore’s inciteful post.

The NICreL, however, advised the RevolutionNow convener to voluntarily commit himself to a mental health facility especially now that mental health issues are gaining better recognition and improving attention in Nigeria.

Read the full statement below:

The New Initiative for Credible Leadership (NICreL) has noted with disgust the attempt by failed revolutionist and pro-terrorists’ activists, Omoyele Sowore to incite Nigerians in the diaspora against the ambassadors designate recently confirmed by the Senate. We recognize that Sowore is suffering from failed revolution hangover, one that has greatly impaired his capacity to process ideas, thoughts, utterances and actions on the basis expected of right-thinking members of the society.

In a new low in Sowore’s rapid descent into the irresponsible, he wrote on his Facebook page that “Dear Nigerians in the Diaspora: If Tukur Buratai or any of the criminal former Buhari service chiefs is (are) sent to your domain anywhere in the world please chase them back to Nigeria in sustained protest! Remember they are only fit to be sent to the ICC in The Hague #BuhariMustGo #OccupyNigeria #RevolutionNow”

Ordinarily, knowing that Sowore is mentally and reality-challenged, efforts should not be dissipated replying to his rabidity against the ambassadors designate, who served the nation meritoriously as military chiefs. However, we are concerned that unwary Nigerians in the diaspora may be misled into heeding his criminal incitement, which would ultimately lead to such hapless persons being arrested for acting in the manner Sowore suggested and they will then be prosecuted, convicted, serve jail terms before being repatriated to Nigeria while the subjects of their misdirected anger continue to excel in their new roles.

Nigerians in the diaspora should note that Sowore is goading to possibly violate the laws in their countries of domicile while he shuttles between New York and Nigeria extorting high ranking persons through blackmail. Those in the diaspora would want to check the extant rules in their locations so that they will not be repatriated to Nigeria to become hirelings and rented protesters for Sowore’s failed revolution.

This common tout appears desperate in his bid to make other Nigerians into depressed persons as he has become after his serial attempts to overthrow the government of the day through mob action have failed repeatedly. He lost at the poll, his personae tainted the #OccupyNigeria movement, his devious nature truncated his #RevolutionNow movement and even protesters of under #EndSARS chased him away from their protests in Abuja because they know that he stains anything he touches with rot. So rotten is this entity that answers are yet to be found for what to his party’s campaign money in the 2019 Presidential Election he took part in.

NICreL is pleased to note that some of the comments on his inciteful post called him out as someone desperate to destroy Nigeria for reasons known to only him. We urge those who see through his evil plans to actively flag and report his posts as inciting violence so that Facebook and other social media platforms can treat those poisonous posts according to their community standards, which do not tolerate bad behaviour.

On the offline side, Nigerians must begin to educate each other on how there is nothing democratic about a Sowore, who refuses to acknowledge that the Senate exercised the powers bestowed on it by the Nigerian 1999 Constitution (as amended). It is tragic that this maniac once, even as a comedian, aspired to the highest position in the land. The disdain he has shown for the National Assembly and his total lack of decorum for diplomatic relations is confirmation that the 38,000 plus people who voted for him in 2019 should be held in asylums because they must constitute a risk to the country to see anything worth redeeming in Sowore.

We urge Sowore, for whatever it worth, that it is time he gives serious thoughts to voluntarily committing himself to a mental health facility especially now that mental health issues are gaining better recognition and improving attention in Nigeria.

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