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Corruption: NGO engages community-based organisations, civil society on whistle blowing

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The African Centre for Media and Information Literacy (AFRICMIL) has begun mobilisation of Community-Based Organisations and grassroots Civil Society Organisations on whistle blowing as a tool for strengthening the fight against corruption.

The Coordinator of the organisation, Dr Chido Onumah, made this known in Kaduna on Thursday, at the opening of a workshop on whistleblowing and the fight against corruption in Kaduna State.

Onumah said that the workshop, organised in partnership with Connected Development (CODE), was designed to mobilise local CBOs and CSOs across the state in the fight against corruption

According to him, the goal is to engage the CBOs and CSOs to use the whistleblowing mechanism to demand for accountability and expose corruption at the grassroots.

“These organisations have a stake in monitoring constituency projects, reporting abandoned projects or abuse of office by political leaders at the state and local levels.

“We hope that at the end, we would have citizens that are conscious of their roles in tackling the menace of corruption.

“This is because as Nigerians, we must be aware of that the fight against corruption is the responsibility of all. We all have a role to play and this is what the whistleblowing policy seeks to ensure.”

The coordinator said that the organisation has launched a project tagged, “Corruption Anonymous (CORA)”, which seeks to engage all Nigerians in tackling corruption.

He explained that the CORA project, supported by MacArthur Foundation was aimed at creating awareness about whistleblowing for Nigerians to use it as a tool in fighting corruption.

“The Nigerian Government had in December 2016, announced the whistleblowing policy which offers financial incentives for citizens who blow the whistle that leads to recovery of looted public funds.

“CORA was specifically designed to create awareness on the policy, build public confidence to support the policy and advocate for the protection of whistleblowers and promote institutionalisation of the policy.

“To this end, AFRICMIL had been bringing relevant stakeholders from government agencies, anti-corruption agencies, media, professionals and civil society groups together to set the tone for citizens engagement,” Onumah added.

Also speaking, CODE’s Chief Executive Officer, Hamzat Lawal, who was represented by the organisation’s Team Lead in Kaduna State, Zaliha Lawal, said that grassroots mobilisation was key to winning the war against corruption.

According to him, corruption will be brought to its knees if community members utilize the whistleblowing mechanism to expose corrupt practices in communities and local government areas

Similarly, Mr Zubairu Galadima-Soba, Director, National Orientation Agency, Kaduna Office, commended AFRICMIL and CODE for mobilising community members to join the fight against corruption in the country.

Galadima-Soba said that every Nigerian has a role to play and urged all citizens to see corruption as a crime against the state and humanity.

Edited By: Maharazu Ahmed

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