Mr Ibrahim Magu, the Acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), has urged Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) in the South-South to closely monitor contract awards and execution by the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC).
Magu made the call in Port-Harcourt at an interactive session with CSO leaders in Rivers and Bayelsa states on Monday.
A statement issued by the commission quoted Magu as saying that proper monitoring of contract award and implementation by citizens is an effective way of fighting the evil of project abandonment in the country.
“We must monitor how contracts are being given and how they are executed to ensure transparency and accountability.
“Also, civil society groups are needed to work with the EFCC in ensuring that right things are done, not only in respect of contract issues but also in all other issues.
“Let people do the right thing within the South-South. If people do the right thing it is for the benefit of the people of the Niger Delta”, spokesman of the commission,” Mr Wilson Uwujaren, quoted him as saying.
The EFCC boss also called on the CSO leaders to be ready to serve as a bridge between the commission and the larger public.
He decried the rising rate of poverty within the South-South, noting that money meant for the development of the region was not accounted for.
He, therefore, challenged them to work towards ending corruption in the region by sensitising youths and other interest groups about the evils of the menace.
Magu stated that for CSOs to rise to the new responsibilities thrust on them, they must be committed, properly-involved and courageous. .
“We are coming together to adopt a common strategy, be committed and properly involved. You need patience, perseverance and courage.
“They will fight you because corruption always fights back but they cannot overcome you because you are doing the right thing”, he said.
The National Director, Coalition of NGOs Against Corruption, Mr Haris Chuma, commended the EFCC on behalf of the CSOs.
Chuma said the tempo of the fight against corruption had significantly increased since Magu came on board.
He promised that the group would show more commitment and responsibility in the new roles offered them by the EFCC.
“We are willing and ready to work with the commission to bring corruption to an end’’, he said.