Ag. EFCC boss, Abdulkarim Chukkol has called on civil society organizations, CSOs, across the country to engage more in the fight against corrupt practices.
Mr Chukkol made the call in Port Harcourt, Rivers state, on Thursday, August 17, 2023, at a One-Day Interactive Meeting with CSOs across Niger Delta region.
While at the forum, the EFCC chairman emphasized the need to join hands with the commission in tackling economic and financial crimes.
Chukkol conveyed the message through the Port Harcourt Zonal Commander, Ahmed Ghali, that the CSOs need to support the commission to achieve its objectives.
“CSOs who want to join us in the anti-corruption fight need to really do that from their minds and without any trouble. We need to join forces to fight,” he exclaimed.
Continuing, he stated that “we are happy because we will discuss a lot of things together as a family and how we can move the country forward and sanitize the system and make it better so that it can work for us.”
In the same vein, the Head of Enlightenment and Re-orientation Unit, Aisha Muhammed, said in her remarks that collaboration between the EFCC and CSOs was key for the fight against corruption to be successful.
“…We need CSOs to come and work with us. We want to be united, we want to have continuity. We want a close relationship, and we want you to come and help us do more. We need you to take this anti-corruption message to the public. This is how we do it. EFCC cannot do it alone”, she said.
Calling for openness and transparency in dealing with all cases of fraudulent practices by members of the public, she stated, “We want to be open in our relationship. We can’t be everywhere. Let’s have a situation whereby in Bayelsa, in Gombe, in Imo, there is someone there who will stand up to speak for EFCC so that we can get Nigeria working again.”
Similarly, Director, Public Affairs Department, Commander of the EFCC, Osita Nwajah thanked the participants for honoring the invitation and urged them to come up with ideas and opinions that will be productive towards the fight against corruption.
In a response, Paul Nwankwoala, Coordinator of International Society for Social Justice and Human Rights, stressed that the EFCC needed more collaborative engagements with CSOs and implored the Commission to partner with only organizations that are credible.
Also responding, Ambassador Green Isaac of the Social Action Group noted that for an agency like the EFCC to succeed, it should pay attention to petitions and complaints by people concerning corruption. Stating further, he said the Commission should take a bold step in ensuring that court judgments preventing EFCC from investigating the Rivers State Government are vacated and that it must be in collaboration with CSOs.