ICPC decry increasing moral decadence, corruption, launches National Ethics Policy
By Emmanuel Acha
The Independent Corrupt Practices and other related offenses Commission (ICPC) has expressed worry over the increasing rate of moral decadence in the country.
The ICPC Chairman, Prof. Bolaji Owasanoye made the observation on Tuesday in Enugu at the launch of the National Ethics and Integrity Policy (NEIP) for the South-East region.
Owasanoye, represented by the Member, representing South-East region in the ICPC Board, Mr Obiora Igwedibia, said that the prevailing situation was the reason why corruption had festered in the country.
According to him, it is worrisome that many Nigerians had lost the values of truthfulness, nationalism and respect for human dignity.
He said that the NEIP which was developed in response to the many damaging effects of corruption in the country was launched by President Muhammadu Buhari on Sept. 28, 2020.
The chairman said that the document became necessary following the need to resuscitate lost values of honesty and integrity in the country.
Owasanoye said that the launch of the NEIP was in collaboration with the Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation and the National Orientation Agency (NOA).
“The NEIP is a child of necessity conceived and delivered out of urgent need to resuscitate our lost values.
“It is in recognition of the vital role value re-orientation plays in the fight against corruption that the policy was approved by the Federal Executive Council on August 19, 2020.
“The policy seeks to promote our societal core values of human dignity, voice of participation, patriotism, personal responsibility, integrity, national unity and professionalism,” he said.
Owasanoye said that the NEIP had such features as Consequence, Management and Implementation Template beginning with stakeholders sensitisation dialogue.
He, however, said that for the policy to succeed, it must be people-driven.
“No matter the measures put in place for the effective implementation of this policy, the efforts would not yield the desired results unless the key stakeholders embrace and own it,” Owasanoye said.
In a remark, the Director General, National Orientation Agency (NOA), Dr Garba Abari, said that the observance of national ethics had been on the downward slide.
Abari, who was represented by Director of NOA in Enugu State, Mr Tony Aneke, said the zonal dialogue and launch were one of series of advocacies that would ensure widespread of the NEIP.
In a goodwill message, the South-East Zonal Manager, News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), Mrs Maureen Atuonwu, said that the crusade against corruption needed a holistic approach.
Atuonwu called on those in leadership positions as well as other Nigerians to subject themselves to the rule of law and do justice to all manner of persons.
Also, the Patron, Enugu State Council of Traditional Rulers, Igwe Abel Nwobodo, said that there could be good changes in Nigeria in spite of how corruption had pervaded the country.
The programme was attended by the media, civil society organisations, traditional institutions, religious organisations and the youth.