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Just in: Nigeria adopts online assets declaration for public servants

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The Code of Conduct Bureau (CCB) has introduced an Online Assets Declaration System (OADS) for public servants, officials have said.

This initiative was created to ease the rigours involved in asset declaration by public workers and avert corrupt practices in the public sector.

The development is in line with the review of the bureau’s laws by the National Anti-Corruption Strategy (NACS) 2017 to 2021 to ensure that the anti-corruption drive of President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration is sustained.

The Director-General, National Information Technology Development Agency, (NITDA), Inuwa Abdullahi, at a meeting with experts in Abuja on Wednesday said, “considering the enormous nature of work done by the CCB, keeping records of over 5 million public workers, there is need for all stakeholders to support the Bureau in order to enable them proactively prevent corruption in the country.”

Mr Abdullahi maintained that the move by the bureau would enable public servants to declare assets from the comfort of their offices or homes and for the bureau to have all public servants’ records intact.

However, he advised the CCB to adopt emerging technologies like BlockChain, Geo-mapping and other cutting edge technologies for proper documentation, litigations, integration and to avoid hacking.

“I urged the bureau to go ahead with this project. As a regulatory agency, we are going to give you all the necessary supports to make sure you succeed on this project,” he said.

He further admonished the CCB to ensure they make the application easier for people to have access to fill necessary information.

Earlier at the forum, the President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan, represented by Ayo Akinyelure commended the CCB for undertaking this assignment.

He also applauded the partnership with the European Union (EU) Rule of Law and Anti-Corruption (ROJAC) project, saying it will no doubt aid in the fight against corruption in Nigeria.

“The campaign against corruption is certainly not a day job. Problems that have eaten deep into the fabric of nations are always challenging to tackle. This is why we have to be meticulous in approaching it from the point of view of awareness creation and through the criminal justice system,” he said.

Mr Lawan stressed that the bigger focus on the National Anti-Corruption Strategy has given the country the opportunity to adopt tactics from different positions and these tactics will add up to tackling the menace.

“I am confident that curbing or eliminating corruption is only a matter of time, going by the synergy of purpose. I do know that this is not an easy task to achieve but with collaborations with relevant multi-lateral organisations like the European Union, United Nations, amongst others, remains an added advantage,” he added.

The Chairman Code of Conduct Bureau, (CCB) Muhammad Isah, said the forum is to sensitize stakeholders on the efforts done so far since 2018 by the bureau which he said has yielded positive results with the new initiative.

“Technology advancement has been prominent for the past two decades. Today, the world is transforming from analogue system to an electronic device system. The Bureau is doing everything possible to ensure administrative bottleneck is minimized”.

Isah further said the bureau has made properly defined efforts to ensure these initiatives succeed.

He promised that the Bureau will not relent in its efforts to stop corruption in the public sector and will not rest in its commitment to achieving its mandates. He stressed that the Bureau is ready to entertain contributions from stakeholders to ensure the country is free of corruption.

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