In continuation of its efforts to support and broaden the fight against corruption in Nigeria through the use of technology particularly social media platform and mobile phones, the CLEEN Foundation organized a public sensitization workshop on Tuesday, 27th of March, 2018 at CLEEN Foundation Office in Lagos to enlighten members of the public about its recently launched online platform -“Voices Against Corruption portal” designed to contribute to promoting the fight against corruption in the Nigeria. The innovative online platform designed under the Voices-Against-Corruption project is expected to receive reports from citizens about low and high-level corruption they experience in Nigeria and work in conjunction with the anti-corruption agencies and civil society groups to address them. The workshop had in attendance representatives of
the Economic and Financial Crime Commission (EFCC); the Independent Corrupt Practices Commission (ICPC), National Human Rights Commission, Community Development Associations(CDAs), Traditional Rulers, women groups, youth groups, civil society organizations and the media.
At the end of the public sensitization workshop, the following observations and recommendations were made:
• The anti-graft agencies such as EFCC, ICPC were given the required support with respect to building synergy with civil society organizations to enhance quick resolution of corruption complaints against public and private officials in Nigeria;
• The anti-graft agencies expressed the willingness and readiness to work with Civil Society groups to tackle corruption in Nigeria;
• Participants called on the anti-graft agencies to have in place witness protection programs to guarantee the safety of citizens who report corruption practices they witness;
• Participants identified that for progress to be made with effective prosecution of cases by the relevant anti-graft agencies, the federal government needs to provide adequate funding for the agencies;
• There is the need to focus on advocating for the effective implementation of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act(ACJA) 2015 to improve the judicial system and expedite prosecution of corruption cases by the courts. The prolonged prosecution of corruption cases was not helping the fight against corruption in Nigeria;
• Participants stated that anti-graft agencies often inundate citizens with news about arrest, whereas there is paucity of information on prosecution and convictions they have been able to effectively secure;
• The voicesagainstcorruption.org platform should be used in tertiary institution. This is also with a view to promote value re-orientation among the youths.
• Participants committed themselves to start using the voiceagainstcorrupt.org platform to track implementation of the budgets of all the three tiers of government in the states, especially in the area of capital project with a view to fostering transparency and accountability in governance.
• The CLEEN Foundation should ensure the voiceagainstcorruption .org website is running and should not politicized like other anti-corruption platforms
• The Anti-graft agencies must ensure that corruption complaints on the platform are attended to and feedbacks must be given on a regular basis.
• The sensitization about the voicesagainstcorruption.org platform should be taken to schools with a view to promote value re-orientation among the youths.
The public sensitization workshop and other activities under the Voices-Against-Corruption project is supported by Trust Africa.
CLEEN Foundation is a non-governmental organization established in January 1998 with the mission of promoting public safety, security and access to justice through the strategies of empirical research, legislative advocacy, demonstration programmes and publications, in partnership with government, civil society and private sector.