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Senate Seeks Improved Funding for ICPC

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By Sodeinde Temidayo David

The Senate Committee on Anti-Corruption and Financial Crimes has called for more funding for the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) in order to make the agency deliver its mandate and purpose effectively.

This was emphasized by the Chairman of the committee, Mr Suleiman Abdu Kwari, during the defence of the 2022 appropriation proposal by ICPC at the Senate complex in Abuja on Monday.

Mr Kwari noted that ICPC is one of the few agencies of the government carrying out a very special and critical national assignment and for that reason, is needed to be funded adequately to fulfil its purpose and responsibilities to manage corruption in the country.

The lawmaker, representing Kaduna North, pledged to do all that was required to ensure that ICPC’s budget was improved upon, and also advised the commission to remain focused in carrying out its mandate.

He also noted that in view of how massive the mandate placed on ICPC by its enabling law was, the current envelope system of budgeting would constitute an impediment to the realisation of this huge task.

In his contribution, the lawmaker representing Kogi West at the Senate, Mr Smart Adeyemi, stressed that it was imperative to allocate enough resources to ICPC so that it would enable the agency to expand its network in terms of physical presence across the nation.

Mr Adeyemi added that having ICPC operatives at the grassroots or at each senatorial district would aid in checkmating corrupt practices at that level.

He noted that the Senate was committed to supporting improved funding for the effective discharge of its mandate.

In his response to some of the issues raised by the senators, the ICPC Chairman, Mr Bolaji Owasanoye, explained to the committee how the commission was empowered by its enabling act to carry out a three-pronged mandate of enforcement, prevention, and public enlightenment and education.

He acknowledged the envelope system, and also noted that the scheme was a serious challenge, as the effort to fight corruption is being escalated.

The ICPC Chairman also spoke on the efforts the body was making to get critical stakeholders to own the National Ethics and Integrity Policy especially traditional rulers and professional bodies.

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