EFCC Boss Tasks Leaders on Integrity

At the first President Umaru Musa Yaradua International Leadership Conference and Awards held in Abuja on May 6, 2024, Ola Olukoyede, the Executive Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), emphasized the crucial roles of integrity and transparency in leadership. The conference, which gathered leaders from both the public and private sectors, served as a platform for discussing the foundations of effective governance.

Addressing the conference through Wilson Uwujaren, the EFCC’s Director of Public Affairs, Olukoyede highlighted that moral and ethical leadership is essential for national development. He urged current leaders to emulate the esteemed qualities of the late President Yaradua, renowned for his commitment to integrity, transparency, and fairness.

Olukoyede pointed out that despite the presence of numerous laws designed to uphold integrity in Nigeria, the enforcement of these laws remains weak, contributing to widespread ethical challenges in the country. He argued that strengthening the enforcement mechanisms is key to improving the nation’s integrity quotient.

“The EFCC as a Commission identifies with the legacy Yar’Adua left behind because that is what the Commission stands for, which is integrity and transparency. If you look at the theme of this event, it borders on moral and ethical leadership and that is what he stood for both as Katsina Governor and as President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. These are virtues we are here to identify with and I want to also believe that the future generation will imbibe these virtues.

“If you look at the work of the EFCC, the mandate that the government has given us captures the key points of integrity, fairness and transparency in both the public and private sector, so all the crimes that we set out to fight, are all about integrity and ethics. Are we talking about embezzlement, bribery, contract inflation and all the ills that we will find in the public sector ? All boils down to the absence of integrity. So I want to implore us to imbibe integrity in all that we do”, he said.

Continuing, the EFCC boss said that the Commission was committed to the provisions of its Establishment Act, vowing that the Commission will not relent in its enforcement roles

Also speaking at the event, former president of Nigeria. Gen. Yakubu Gowon, praised the late president for imbibing the true spirit of patriotism as he is still being remembered for his love for Nigeria.

“I know him from as far back as when he was governor, I visited the state at a time when the guinea worm was affecting the people of Katsina state. He was concerned about the rural areas, the welfare of the people, I saw how passionate he was about the people. He was a man of honesty, he has to be remembered by that” he said.

Also delivering a speech as an awardee, Governor of Benue State, Hyacinth Alia thanked the organizers for preserving the legacy of the late president, encouraging Nigerian leaders to be steadfast in delivering on the mandate given to them to move Nigeria forward.

“We should learn to believe and accept the challenges before us so that we can move from one point to the other towards a better Nigeria. We must remain very hopeful because Nigeria holds a great dream for all of us as the man we are celebrating today is an example of that. This day is for all of us. Let’s continue to believe that we shall overcome”, he said.

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