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NIGERIA COAT OF ARM

CSO partners reform bureau to fight corruption in public service

Yakubu and Arabi during the CeFTIW visit to BPSR

Yakubu and Arabi during the CeFTIW visit to BPSR

By Emmanuel Afonne

Mr Umar Yakubu, the Executive Director, Center for Fiscal Transparency and Integrity Watch (CeFTIW), a Civil Society Organisation (CSO), has advocated an open governance system where corruption fight will be preventive rather than reactive.

Yakubu made the call in Abuja on Tuesday when the Board of the CeFTIW visited the Bureau of Public Service Reform (BPSR) to seek its collaboration in achieving its aim.

He said that their visit was predicated on two major issues which bothered on preventive ways of fighting corruption and the policy of retirees exiting without transferring knowledge to those in service.

“We have created a platform like Facebook where retired public servants can go and document their successes so that the serving ones can go and access. It is called a public service diary. Failures can also be documented there.

“When the government is open, there is physical transparency around budget, procurement, and there are citizens’ engagements, then you discover that there are less corruption in society,” he said.

Yakubu said that research had shown that it was always better to adopt preventive measures in fighting corruption rather than adopting a reactive approach.

“BPSR is the organisation that has done so much work around this area and we want to scale up these things.

“That is why we came here to see how we can cascade all our initiatives in improving governance in Nigeria.

“BPSR has done a lot and made the job easier for us because most of the information of the MDAs and the work they do are not on their websites.

“So, from the side of the BPSR, they have done a lot, what we need is implementation and we will partner them to see that most of the reforms that they have initiated will be implemented through the civil society platform,” Yakubu said.

According to him, the aim of the Centre is to change the way corruption is being fought in the country.

“There are a lot of reaction after corruption has been carried out.

“You see law enforcement agents running around trying to prosecute a suspect and this is very expensive and time consuming, especially when it involves a criminal act,” he added.

A member of the CeFTIW board, and a retired Assistant Inspector General of Police, Muazu Zubairu, noted that security was one of the major concerns in the country today.

Zubairu, therefore, urged the BPSR to initiate a reform of the Nigeria Police Force to grow the trust Nigerians have for it.

Earlier, the Director-General of BPSR, Mr Dasuki Arabi, said that the Bureau had already forwarded a working document to the appropriate authority for the reform of the Nigerian Police Force.

Arabi said that the report on the police reform from the Bureau centred on preventive measure rather than reactive.

“With the recent inauguration of another committee to look at the police reform and dust up other reports, we are confident that government is going to work on our police reform report for the country to have a better police force that is more equipped, well trained and ready to provide 21st century policing to citizens.

“BPSR was established based on the need to have an ‘engine room’ that is enabled with the required capability and resources to leverage on local and international knowledge networks.

“The Bureau was also created to support policy, institutional and governance reform processes with required expertise and good practices on an ongoing basis.

“Its statutory responsibility is to initiate action on reforms at the public service level, coordinate, monitor and evaluate the implementation of reforms in the MDAs,” Arabi added.

He assured CeFTIW board that his office would collaborate with them to achieve their goals. (NAN)(www.nannews.ng)

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Edited by Chinyere Joel-Nwokeoma