By Ndubuisi Francis in Abuja
The Office of the Auditor-General for the Federation (OAuGF), otherwise known as the Supreme Audit Institution (SAI), and the Independent Corrupt Practices and other related Offences Commission (ICPC) have expressed a resolve to intensify their cooperation and synergise effectively in actualising the present administration’s mantra of zero tolerance for corruption.
Both institutions made the pledge when the Auditor-General for the Federation, Mr. Anthony Mkpe Ayine paid a courtesy call on the ICPC Chairman, Mr. Ekpo Nta, in Abuja.
Ayine and Nta agreed that effective collaboration between their two institutions was crucial to the government’s anti-corruption war. The Auditor-General stated that such synergy will help to promote accountability and transparency in the management of public funds.
His words: “I strongly believe that our office, working closely with the ICPC, will go a long way in ensuring the judicious application of government funds for good governance, thereby strengthening the anti-corruption drive and promote accountability and transparency in the management of public funds.”
Ayine commended the ICPC for its anti-corruption activities, assuring the anti-graft agency of the support of the OAuGF in this direction, as both institutions are poised to ensure that the current administration wins the war against corruption which it has been waging since its emergence about two years ago.
Responding, Nta, congratulated Ayine on his well-deserved appointment, pointing out that the focus of audit reports was usually to highlight and hold out how funds have been applied, thereby exposing malpractices and corruption where such has been perpetrated within the system.
He stated that the ICPC has concentrated on studying and exposing corrupt practices where they had occurred, a situation which makes both institutions bed-fellows in the bid to entrench a corruption-free society as envisioned by President Buhari’s administration.
While the OAuGF is charged by the Constitution on promoting accountability in management of public funds, specifically to audit the nation’s accounts in the most professional and transparent manner, ensuring value for money in government financial activities for the benefit of the Nigerian people, the ICPC is saddled with the task of prohibiting and prescribing punishment for corrupt practices and other related offences.
The ICPC Chairman noted that the Office of the Auditor-General for the Federation is very important in the prevention of corruption, adding that the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crimes (UNODC) considers it as an anti-corruption institution.
The Office of the Auditor-General for the Federation is mandated by the Constitution of the Federation to audit all government ministries, departments and agencies (MDAs).