Nigeria: ICPC to go after lawmakers who divert constituency project funds
London, April 2, 2019 (AltAfrica)-The Independent Corrupt Practices and other related offences Commission, ICPC, says it will prosecute politicians and contractors who diverted funds for Constituency Projects across the country.
Chairman of the commission, Prof. Bolaji Owasanoye made this known on Tuesday at the launch of “Constituency Projects Tracking Group” in Abuja.
He said that the commission would pursue such contractors to either complete the projects, return the funds or face prosecution.
“Affected companies and their directors will also be prosecuted. We also hope to publish the names of those behind the project failures for possible social sanctions in their communities.’’
He said that in order to ensure that there was value for money, the commission launched a partnership with the Nigerian Institute of Quantity Surveyors, NIQS).
“We will select projects to be evaluated by NIQS using agreed criteria and parameters which will include the amount of money appropriated and released for such projects’’.
He further said that ICPC had statutory power to conduct risk assessments and studies to reduce corruption vulnerabilities in Ministries Departments and Agencies (MDAs).
“We have lined up a number of MDAs with high vulnerability for review before June,’’ he said.
Owasanoye said that the commission had begun a review of application of personnel and capital appropriations of MDAs in order to assist government block leakages in expenditure and to sanction infractions.
The chairman explained that the outcome would help ICPC recover misappropriated revenue and assist governments improve allocation of revenue to areas that deserved it.
He said that one of the major policy focus of the new board was to address grand corruption that directly impacted specific social development sectors thus directly impacting the lives of ordinary citizens.
“Such grand corruption can be found in diversion or misapplication of funds for constituency projects, Universal Basic Education Commission (UBEC), Universal Basic Health, Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TETFund) and National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) among others.”
He said that the lives of Nigerians would be touched if such funds were used for the purpose they were meant for as well as reduce cynicism about what government was doing to impact the life of people.
Director, Administration of the commission, Bala Muhammed, while presenting ICPC’s 2019 to 2023 Strategic Action Plan said that its vision was to have a country free from all forms of corruption and corrupt practices.
He said that the mission of the commission was to rid the country of corruption through lawful enforcement and preventive measures.