The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has been commended for its enforcement efforts aimed at institutionalising good governance practices in the management of political parties in the country.
The anti-graft agency was commended at a one-day roundtable on ‘Political Parties as Public Institutions, Need for Good Governance Practice,’ organised by the Peoples Democratic Institute (PDI) and Coalition for Democracy and Credible Election (CODECE) in Abuja, yesterday.
Speaking at the occasion, the Director General of PDI, Dr. Lanre Adebayo, emphasised the critical importance of good governance in the management of political parties, adding that the initiative of the current leadership of the EFCC to promote financial accountability in political parties should be supported by the Nigerian civil society and the mass media.
Adebayo observed the central role of political parties to democratic governance in the country, adding that the quality of representative democracy and the well-being of Nigerians depended on an elective and efficient management of political parties.
He further argued that under the current Nigerian Constitution, political parties are public institutions whose operations must adhere to international best practices in political party management and operations.
Adebayo also contended: “Poor intr-party management and lack of internal democracy were major factors in the political challenges that the country had faced in the past and the EFCC’s enforcement of good governance has the potential of further strengthening our national efforts to depersonalise ownership and control of political parties.”
The PDI boss noted that as a pioneer initiative, there would be expected misunderstanding and mistakes from both sides of the issue, adding that there was a need for capacity building especially for managers of political parties and political campaigns as well as senior officials of the commission.
He also disclosed that the PDI had entered into discussion with the Institute for
Governance and Leadership Studies in Africa with a view to developing relevant training curriculum as part of the global efforts to support democratic governance in the country.
He further said the professional institutions such as the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria (ICAN) and the EFCC would be part of the faculty of the programmes.
In a communique issued at the end of the one day roundtable which was held at the institute’s conference centre, participants commended the current Chairman of the EFCC, Mr. Ibrahim Magu for the enhanced professionalism and dynamism that he has introduced into operations of the commission.
Participants called for improved funding of the EFCC.
They also called for greater synergy between the commission and research centres across the country in the areas of intelligence sharing, monitoring and capacity building especially in the area of political parties’ finances and campaign funds mobilisation and management.