The recruitment of 129 staff and creation of anti-graft offices in the 44 local government areas in Kano state will domesticate fight against corruption, GIABA Journalists Network on Money Laundering/Terrorist Financing, Nigeria, has said.
Kano State Governor Abdullahi Ganduje said recently that he had fired a commissioner, some permanent secretaries, and even an accountant-general over allegations of corruption. The top officials are in court facing charges.
“This painstaking effort despite its political implication is a good development for the fight against money laundering and terrorist financing in Nigeria,” a statement by the Nigerian coordinator of GIABA journalists network, Odan Agbese and Program Advisor Muhammad Nuruddeen, said.
The network is an inter-country network for tracking money laundering and financial terrorism of GIABA – an institution of the ECOWAS responsible for facilitating the adoption and implementation of anti-money laundering and counter-financing of terrorism.
“Anti-graft crusade can only make meaning when state governors stop shielding their officials and aides involved in the abuse of office,” the statement said.
The Ganduje administration has empowered the Kano State Public Complaints and Anti-Corruption Commission and appointed an activist as its head, to fight corruption in the state civil service.
“By creating offices in Kano’s 44 local government areas, the fight against corruption will take its roots at the third tier of governance which is adjudged to be the bedrock of public corruption,” the statement said.
Governor Ganduje has taken a bold step and deepened the anti-graft fight by going against his appointees which indicates that there are no sacred cows in the state. “We urged other state governors to emulate Kano in that regard, by stamping graft in public offices,” Mr Agbese said.
The state has also sent its anti-graft officials to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and the Independent Corrupt Practices and other related offenses Commission (ICPC) for training.
“We urged the governor to continue to give the state anti-graft commission a free hand to perform its statutory duties, and also ensure that its investigation and prosecution are devoid of politics,” the GIABA network said.
The state anti-corruption commission has so far investigated and arraigned former Commissioner for Land, Faruk Bibi Faruk, for alleged criminal breach of trust and illegal acts.
Also arraigned with him on a three-count charge before Justice Nasiru Saminu of Kano High Court 22, were the permanent secretary in the ministry, Mahmud Bari, and a director in the ministry, Ahmad Ibrahim.