The Ndigbo Unity Forum (NUF) worldwide, a non-governmental organization, has advocated the death penalty for looters of public funds, to eradicate the current spate of corruption in the country.
The call was made in a statement jointly signed by NUF’s President, Mr Augustine Chukwudum and Secretary, Mr Tony Igbokwe, respectively yesterday, in Enugu.
The statement also called on the National Assembly to remove the immunity clause from the constitution, so that sitting governors and other top ranking public officials could be probed while still in office.
“If found guilty, he will be prosecuted, this will go a long way in stopping the ongoing daily looting, especially at the state level,’’ NUF said.
It urged President Muhammad Buhari to put in more stringent measures and seriousness in the ongoing anti-graft war, because some public office holders, by their words and actions, think the anti-graft war is a ruse.
“We also demand that institutions like EFCC, ICPC and the judiciary be strengthened so that no one can be above the law as it is today.
“Everybody must be treated equally as it is in the U.S, Britain, Canada and other countries of the world.
“By so doing, justice must prevail, not in a case where Ex-Managing Director of Bank PHB, Francis Atuche, who stole billions of naira, was recently sent to jail for a term of six years imprisonment.
“While someone who stole vegetable that was less than N1,000 value was abandoned for more than five years as an Awaiting Trial Mate (ATM)’’, the NGO added.
The statement noted that it was a big irony for looters of public funds to be moving with heavy police escorts, while enjoying their loot inside the country.
“The common people, whose wealth was stolen, are dying daily of hunger, lack of potable water, bad roads, no functional hospital and no standard primary and secondary schools,’’ the NGO said.
It recalled that in February 2020, NUF issued a statement calling on the EFCC to probe both present and ex-governors of the South-East, over their alleged mismanagement and looting of over N20 trillion between May 1999 to January 2020.
“Up till date, no single ex-governor has been convicted and most of them have come to believe that President Buhari’s anti-corruption war is a ruse,’’ NUF said.
Nine Passengers Burnt In Oyo Auto Crash – FRSC
The Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) has said nine passengers have sustained varying degree of burns in an auto crash on Ogbomoso-Oyo Expressway.
The Sector Commander in the state, Joshua Adekanye, confirmed the incident in an interview with The Tide’s source in Ibadan yesterday.
He said the accident, which occurred on Saturday, involved a trailer and a truck at Sekona area along Ogbomoso – Oyo Expressway.
Adekanye said nine out of the total 13 people involved in the accident got burnt while four others escaped unhurt.
“The accident happened around 3:30 a.m. on Saturday, and the truck vehicle caught fire while the trailer collided with it.
“The actual cause of the fire in the truck could not be ascertain because it happened at night”, he said.
He, however, said the likely cause of the trailer colliding with the truck might be speeding and wrongful overtaking.
According to him, the burnt victims are being referred to the University of Ilorin Teaching Hospital for treatment, adding that the RS11.31 Ogbomoso and RS11.312 Oolo Commands conducted rescue operation.
“Other agency that carried out the rescue operation are the Fire Service and Odo-Oba Police Division”, he said.
Adekanye called on motorists to shun night travelling, wrongful overtaking and dangerous driving to ensure safety on the road.
Association Lauds Gov Over E-Ticket Revenue Collection
Enugu State Governor, Barr Peter Mbah, has been commended for introducing E-Ticket system of revenue collection, which is aimed at increasing Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) of the state.
The President, Enugu State Markets Amalgamated Traders Association (ESMATA), Chief Stephen Aniagu, who made the commendation in a chat with newsmen in Enugu, expressed happiness that the system has already started yielding fruitful results.
Urging traders in all the markets in the State to cooperate with government by embracing the innovation, Chief Aniagu also expressed satisfaction with the announcement by the State Government that its IGR had increased tremendously from what it used to be before the introduction of the system.
According to him, traders in Ogbete Main Market have already identified themselves with the system, with a view to encouraging the State Government’s efforts at increasing its IGR.
On programmes and projects mapped out for execution by the Governor Mbah-led administration, Chief Aniagu said, “we have already started feeling the impacts of these projects.
“From all indications, Governor Mbah has plans to make Enugu State a role model. We are cooperating very well with the State Government. The relationship between the Governor and traders in the State is very cordial.
“Ogbete traders are fully involved as they have started paying their taxes as and when due. I urge all the traders to key in by ensuring that government revenue goes directly into government Coffers instead of private pockets”.
Continuing, Chief Aniagu further said: “The Governor has always carried along traders in Ogbete and other markets in the State in his programmes.
Fielding questions from newsmen on the level of peace in Ogbete, Chief Aniagu stated that there was relative peace in the market, adding that traders were fully supporting and cooperating with his administration.
He, however, advised traders in Ogbete and other markets in the State not to cheat their customers in any manner, noting that “the importance of carrying out you businesses with the fear of God cannot be over emphasized”.
By: Canice Amadi Enugu
EFCC Boss Vows To Fight Corruption
The Chairman of Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Mr Ola Olukoyede, has pledged to refocus the anti-corruption war by adopting modalities capable of stimulating economic growth and development.
He gave the assurance while addressing members of staff of Ilorin Zonal Command of EFCC, at the Commission’s Office, GRA, Ilorin.
Olukoyede promised a paradigm shift in the agency’s approach to anti-graft war, to make it more proactive and result oriented.
“There is need for us to refocus our attention in EFCC. We need to define our scope of mandate with a view to stimulate the economy of the country.
“The era of stifling and crippling of businesses with unwarranted PNDs is gone.
“We must be able to separate proceeds of crime from legitimate funds and use the instrumentality of our mandate to create wealth and jobs for people.
“We will also use the instrumentality of our mandate to create conducive environment for businesses to thrive for a sustainable economic growth”, he said.
The EFCC boss also pledged to prioritise staff welfare, stressing that he was already in talks with the government for necessary support.
“We have done it before and we are going to do it again”, he assured.
Olukoyede asked officers of the commission to be above board and avoid acts of compromise in their line of duty, stressing, “We owe our nation the sacred duty of making this country free of corruption and crimes”.
He urged members of staff to work together for a good course and see themselves as officers having the same rights and privileges as encapsulated in Section 8 (5) of the EFCC Establishment Act, 2004.
The TIde’s source reports that the executive Chairman had earlier visited the palace of Emir of Ilorin, Alhaji Ibrahim Zulu Gambari, where he called on traditional rulers to deepen their partnership with EFCC.
He called for more cooperation in order to reduce corruption through adequate promotion of ethics, values and behavioral change among their subjects.
“Our royal fathers have a crucial role to play by using your good offices to champion the crusade against corruption among your subjects.
Responding, the Emir of Ilorin, Alhaji Ibrahim Zulu Gambari pledged to continue supporting EFCC and other law enforcement agencies in stamping out corruption and other form of criminalities in the State.
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