Abia State governor, Dr Okezie Ikpeazu, has called on finance and accounting officers in the state to join the government in the fight to stem corruption in public and private sectors.
Speaking at a two-day special workshop on anti-corruption organised by the state government for all finance and accounting officers in Umuahia, with theme: “Governance and Corruption,” Ikpeazu said that all hands must be on deck to fight corruption.
He said that the workshop would deepen the effort of his government in fighting corruption, as well as provide a forum for accounting officers to be exposed to global best practices in financial management, processes, procedures and relevant laws guiding public finance and procurement.
Ikpeazu noted that the forum, among other things, would make financial administrators to see themselves as partners in the efforts to stamp out corruption in public institutions
“It is only through an interaction like this that the operators in the various sub-national government and the watchdog in terms of the fight against corruption, chief among which is the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) that we will begin to understand each other very well,” he said.
In a keynote address, the Chairman of EFCC, Abdulrasheed Bawa, said that the fight against corruption should not be left for the Federal Government alone.
The EFCC boss, who was represented by the Commission’s Director of Operations, Abdukareem Chukkol, expressed the readiness of the Commission to assist state governments to improve transparency and accountability in governance.
He lauded Governor Ikpeazu for organising the workshop, which he described as key in driving good governance.
Earlier in his speech, the facilitator of the workshop and Chief of Staff to the Governor, Prof Anthony Agbazuere, disclosed that the workshop was aimed at inculcating in the financial managers of the state the global accounting standard and prudent management of resources.
While maintaining that Abia State believes in transparency and accountability, he expressed optimism that the workshop would leave participants better informed.
The Chief of Staff commended the chairman of the EFCC for believing in sensitising Nigerians towards stamping out corruption in the polity.
The workshop, which had in attendance, members of the State Executive Council, Permanent Secretaries, local government chairmen, management staff in finance and supply departments of government also saw many resource persons delivered lectures on corruption as well as proffered solution to the menace.
In a communique at the end of the workshop, participants noted that corruption undermines government business, economic activities, people’s wellbeing and poses grave obstacles to social and economic development.
The participants urged everyone to adopt a paradigm shift from the mantra of “my story must change” to “change begins with me.”
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