Participants at the recently concluded National Summit on Whistleblowing have called on the Federal Government to prioritize the safety and security of whistle-blowers in the face of “punitive actions against patriotic Nigerians who volunteer information about corrupt individuals”
The call formed part of resolutions reached at the end of the summit which was organized by African Centre for Media and Information Literacy (AFRICMIL) in collaboration with the House of Representatives Committee on Financial Crimes, the Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) and Wole Soyinka Centre for Investigative Journalism (WSCIJ).
“Measures should be urgently put in place by relevant agencies to address the security of whistle-blowers and resolve cases of persons who are persecuted for giving out information.
“There is urgent need for the government to set up independent governance structure comprising representatives of anti-corruption agencies and credible Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) to oversee the implementation of the whistleblower policy.”
The summit also appealed to the federal government to accelerate action in paying whistle-blowers what is due to them, and lamented lack of coordination in the fight against corruption among the various anti-corruption and security agencies.
Furthermore, stakeholders lamented the delay on the part of the Federal Government in constituting the Boards of Parastatals and MDAs, including those of some anticorruption agencies, in the past two years, noting that it “is hampering the fight against corruption.”
The participants likewise called on the national assembly to put in place a legal framework for the protection of whist-blowers, and the fight against corruption as a whole.
They commended whistle-blowers for their patriotism and courage despite the inherent dangers involved but expressed displeasure over the fact that states and local governments have not shown adequate interest in keying into the federal government’s anti-corruption campaign.
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