Eight Assembly Frustrated FG’s Efforts To Fight Corruption, Says Sagay

 

The Chairman of the Presidential Advisory Committee against Corruption (PACAC), Professor Itse Sagay, has said the Eight Assembly frustrated President Muhammadu Buhari’s government in the fight against corruption.

Sagay stated this on Thursday after members of his committee met with President Buhari at the Presidential Villa in Abuja.

“I am happy to say that the capacity of corruption to fight back has been reduced with the expiration of the life of the Eight Assembly.

“That is where the main opposition to this government was constituted. That was the centre, the main opposition to the fight against corruption,  and at that time it did not depend on which party they belonged to. They all ganged up together against the fight against corruption.

“They did everything they could to frustrate the (federal) government and ourselves in this fight against corruption,” he said.

The Eight Assembly was headed by Senator Bukola Saraki and Honourable Yakubu Dogara, both of the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

According to him, recoveries up to N1trillion was made locally from looters while the fight against corruption is on course.

Speaking further, Sagay commended the President in his administration’s efforts to rid the nation of corruption, an act he believes is being recognised by the international community.

He said Nigeria was lucky to have a person of President Buhari’s credentials as leader of government.

“We congratulate you (Buhari) for being a star of the anti-corruption struggle in Africa. You attach a lot of importance to the fight against corruption, and we have tried to achieve the aims you had in mind when you established PACAC,” he stated.

Sagay Insists Senate Has No Power To Summon Him

Sagay Insists Senate Has No Power To Summon Him In a swift reaction to the Senate’s directive, the Chairman of the Presidential Advisory Committee Against Corruption, Professor Itse Sagay, has declared that the Senate has neither the power nor authority to summon him to appear before it.

Professor Sagay told Channels Television that he cannot be intimidated by the lawmakers.

He therefore asked them to get legal advisers to check sections 88 and 89 of the constitution to get advice on the limitation of their powers in this regard.

Mr Sagay further explained that in making the statement which seemed to have offended some senators, he was merely exercising his constitutional right to express his opinion.

He challenged anyone offended by his statement to approach a court of law, insisting that the Senate cannot constitute itself into prosecutor and judge, vowing not to succumb to illegal and unconstitutional acts.

The Senate had directed its Committee on Ethics and Privileges to investigate remarks allegedly made by the professor, saying that the Senate is filled with people of questionable character.

Senate To Investigate Prof. Itse Sagay’s Comment

Judges' Call For Amaechi To Step Down Is Diversionary - Itse SagayThe Nigerian Senate has directed its Committee on Ethics and Privileges to investigate remarks allegedly made by the Chairman Presidential Advisory Committee on Corruption, Professor Itse Sagay.

Raising a point of order on the floor, Deputy Senate leader, Bala Ibn Na’allah, drew the attention of lawmakers to a report in a newspaper publication, where Professor Sagay was allegedly quoted as saying that the Senate is filled with people of questionable character.

Senator Ibn Na’allah maintained that Senators do not have questionable characters and therefore asked the Senate to summon Professor Sagay to name those who he feels have questionable characters in the Senate.

The Senate consequently referred the matter to its Committee on Ethics and Privileges to investigate and report back to the Upper Chamber.

Osinbajo Calls For Adoption Of Anti-Corruption Models

Osinbajo Calls For Adoption Of Anti-Corruption Models The Acting President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo, is calling on Nigeria’s anti-corruption agencies to learn from the international community on the model some “less corrupt” countries have used to curb the menace in their country.

Osinbajo, who described corruption as systemic and life threatening, also appealed to the international community to assist Nigeria in the identification, recovery and repatriation of stolen assets.

Meanwhile, the Chairman of the Presidential Advisory Committee Against Corruption, Professor Itse Sagay, decried the perception and reaction of the public to corruption, saying that corruption is omnipresent in Nigeria.

Also recently, the Kwara State Governor, Abdulfatah Ahmed, called on members of the judiciary to stand against corruption and uphold the rule of law.

According to him, the recent happenings on alleged corruption especially against some members of the judiciary, make the public question the integrity of the judiciary.

While he advocated that rights of all citizens must be upheld regardless of age or gender, Ahmed also noted that the integrity, independence and impartiality of the judiciary are essential to promoting human rights and fostering development.

NDDC Denies Buying Cars Worth Over N1bn

NDDC Denies Buying Cars Worth Over N1bnThe management of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) has denied the allegations of procurement of over 70 luxury cars each costing tens of millions of Naira, made by the Chairman of the Presidential Advisory Committee Against Corruption, Professor Itse Sagay.

In a statement issued on Thursday by the Head of Corporate Affairs at the NDDC, Chijioke Amu-Nnadi, the commission denied making such purchases since its current governing board assumed office on November 4, 2016.

According to the statement, the NDDC Chairman, Senator Victor Ndoma-Egba, and the Managing Director/CEO, Nsima Ekere, as well as the two Executive Directors are still using their private vehicles three months after assumption of duties.

The statement added that the agency is only now in the process of acquiring work vehicles.

The NDDC said it is adhering strictly to due process which includes seeking approval of the Federal Executive Council, expressing its readiness to open its books for audit at any time.

The statement read: “The NDDC is only now in the process of acquiring work vehicles, and is adhering strictly to due process. These include five (5) Toyota Prado jeeps, 10 Toyota Hilux trucks, four (4) Toyota Land Cruiser jeeps, one (1) Toyota Coaster bus and two (2) Toyota Hiace buses.

“The Commission has just received the Due Process Compliance Certificate from the Bureau of Public Procurement, BPP, and is preparing the mandatory memo for the approval of the Federal Executive Council.

Doing What Is Right

“We wish to restate that the current Board and Management of the NDDC is committed to making its transactions transparent, by adhering strictly to processes and procedures of government, as espoused in the Board’s 4-R Initiative of restoring the Commission’s core mandate, restructuring the balance sheet, reforming our processes and reaffirming a commitment to doing what is right and proper at all times in facilitating the sustainable development of the Niger Delta region.

“In this regard, the Commission is also partnering with Bureau for Public Service Reforms (BPSR), Nigeria Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI) and Open Government Partnership (OGP) to improve the Commission’s governance systems, procurement and project implementation processes, in order to plug all loopholes and systematically eliminate all incidences of mismanagement and corruption.

“NDDC is always ready to open its books for audit. We are also committed to responding to all inquiries from well-meaning individuals and groups seeking clarification on rumours and possible false information.

“While asking for support from all stakeholders to enable the Commission succeed in the ambitious task of reforms, the New NDDC is evolving as a responsible public institution and members of the public should feel free to get authentic information on its activities to avoid sensationalism”.

Judges’ Call For Amaechi To Step Down Is Diversionary – Sagay

Judges' Call For Amaechi To Step Down Is Diversionary - Itse SagayThe Chairman of the Presidential Advisory Committee, Prof Itse Sagay has described as diversionary, malicious and vindictive, the call for the Minister of Transport, to step down from office.

In an interview with select journalists on Thursday in Lagos, Prof Sagay made it clear that he was speaking in his personal capacity.

He insisted that the outburst of Justice Okoro and Ngwuta (two justices of the Supreme Court) is “surprising considering that it is totally unrelated to the raids of their premises, their arrests and subsequent charges before the courts”.

The Professor also said that “men of that status should not indulge in such diversionary activities in the midst of grave and ominous charges against them. I would have thought that they would use the time at their disposal to prepare their defenses against the serious charges they are facing.

“In any case, given their statuses as Supreme Court Justices even in the middle of the adversity confronting them, they should not have engaged in a distraction totally incompatible with the dignity and respect that their offices attract.

“It is demeaning for them to abandon their legitimate defence in order to smear a high official of the Buhari Government, which latter they probably consider to be the source of their predicaments.

“Mere allegations cannot have enough weight to affect the position of such a high official as Amaechi, otherwise knowing the disposition of Nigerians for putting people down, no office holder will be safe in this country. It is therefore improper and ridiculous to compare the position of the justices in whose houses millions of naira and hundreds of thousands of dollars were recovered, to that of Amaechi against whom there is only the mere ipse dixit of the judges.

“This sudden anti-Amaechi narrative is consistent with the objectives and interests of the chief promoters and funders of judicial corruption during election petitions. These powerful opposition are well known.

“To be more specific, they are from Rivers and Akwa Ibom states. They are the one who financed judicial corruption and brought that great institution, the judiciary to its knees, after the 2015 elections.

“These allegations are intended to undermine and weaken the Buhari Federal Government, by depriving it of the service, input, ideas and productivity of some of its brightest stars.

“This is intended to set the stage for charging the government with ineffectiveness and cluelessness. In other words, it is an attempt to reduce the image and perception of this Federal Government to the low level of their own fate and unlamented government.

“Therefore, the call for Amaechi to step down is malicious and vindictive. It should be ignored with complete ignominy”.

Anti-corruption Fight: FG Seeks More Support From Nigerians

yemi osinbajo on anti-corruption fight in NigeriaThe Federal Government is seeking more support from Nigerians for the anti-corruption fight aimed at recovering stolen funds from persons that looted the nation’s treasury. 

The government further assured law abiding Nigerians that they have nothing to fear, as the government’s fight against corruption is aimed at retrieving the commonwealth of Nigerians from persons who have illegally appropriated such wealth to themselves and their families.

Addressing participants at a national conference on Tuesday on the role of the legislature in the fight against corruption, Vice President Yemi Osinbajo said “Nigeria stands the risk of perpetually remaining under-developed if nothing is done to stem the tide of corruption”.

Respect The Rule Of Law

He appealed to Nigerians to team up with the Federal Government in its effort to rid the nation of corrupt persons.

The issue of corruption again took centre stage, at the Presidential Advisory Council Against Corruption and the National Assembly conference.

Participants had gathered to brainstorm on how to tackle corruption.

While the Vice President, who declared the conference open, lamented the state of corruption in Nigeria, a former Director of the Kenya Anti-Corruption Commission, Patrick Lumumba, in a keynote address recommended severe sanctions to deter corrupt persons.

The Chairman of the Presidential Advisory Committee Against Corruption, Professor Itse Sagay, berated the legislature for its failure to fight corruption just as the President of the Senate, Dr. Bukola Saraki, advised the Federal Government to respect the rule of law.

The two-day conference will among other subjects examine the role of the legislature as the champion of anti-corruption reforms, reform of the anti-corruption legal framework and compliance with international standards.

Prof. Sagay Restates Need For Special Courts On Corruption

Corruption, Itse Sagay, CourtThe Chairman of the Presidential Advisory Committee on Anti-Corruption, Professor Itse Sagay, has re-emphasised the need to set up a special court whose jurisdiction is limited to a set of crimes.

Professor Sagay made the call at the 2016 lecture of the National Association of Judiciary Correspondents in Lagos State, Nigeria’s commercial capital.

He blamed legal practitioners and the judicial system for long delays in the prosecution of a number of corruption cases in the country.

“There is justifiable frustration in this country about the (apparently) ineffectiveness of the prosecution of corruption cases.

“People will cite the fact that cases that started since 2007 have not been concluded (while) some are in suspense (and) we’ve even forgotten about others.

“It’s not a very encouraging picture,” he said.

New Manual For Prosecution

Professor Sagay said that his committee has been advocating special courts for the prosecution of financial crimes, as well as devised a new guide for prosecution.

“We have established a new manual for prosecution. The manual that gives the prosecutor and the investigator a step-by-step process towards an efficient and effective prosecution.

“We will establish a special court with special judges, whose jurisdiction is limited to a set of crimes,” he said.

Corruption: Expect Conclusion Of Some Trials In Six Months – Prof Sagay

Itse-Sagay-Professor on corruption Within the next six months, federal authorities will begin to conclude cases filed against alleged corrupt individuals who are currently being prosecuted, a Nigerian government official said on Sunday.

In an interview on the current’s administration’s one year in office, the chairman of the Presidential Advisory Committee on War Against Corruption, Professor Itse Sagay denied allegations that the government was being selective in the anti-graft war assuring Nigerians that justice would prevail in all ongoing cases.

According to him, the persons that had access to funds were part of the previous administration and are being tried for looting the funds.

He said: “Vigorous dynamic prosecution that the EFCC has come across. The cases are progressing aggressively.

“It is a fresh start and a normal criminal case of sought use to take between 10 to 12 years and still be in suspense.

“If you follow what is going on now, the case are moving on. In some cases the government has concluded its prosecution and the defence has been opened.

“Within the next six months, there will be a series of concluded cases.

He assured Nigerians that there would be an end to what what he called “suspended cases”.

Corruption Fight Is In Nigeria’s Interest – Lai Mohammed

CorruptionThe Minister of Information and Culture says that the fight against corruption is not targeted at any individual but in Nigeria’s interest.

Mr Lai Mohammed made the disclosure on Tuesday during a meeting with the Presidential Advisory Committee on Corruption in Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory.

The Minister noted that Nigerians have been the victims of corruption, stressing that this is why the present administration is determined to correct the mistakes of the past.

He observed that the amount of money taken away by corruption is enough to complete major projects across the country.

In his response, the Chairman of the committee, Professor Itse Sagay, urged the media to support the fight against corruption.