Director General (DG) of the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) Mallam Kashifu Inuwa Abdullahi, has said that the President Mohammadu Buhari’s use of Information Communication Technology (ICT) as well as the Treasury Single Account (TSA), Bank Verification Number (BVN) and others has facilitated the elimination of ghost workers, saved lots of funds for government and has made the fight against corruption easier.
Abdullahi stated this Friday in Abuja while delivering a keynote address at the 2021 Pre-Democracy day conference organised by the Global Integrity Crusade Network (GICN) in collaboration with Transparency Advocacy for Development Initiative (TADI) on the theme: Appraising the Impact of President Mohammadu Buhari’s anti-corruption fight on the Nigerian economy since 2015.
Represented by the Director IT Infrastructure Solution at NITDA, Dr. Usman Abdullahi, he stressed that
ICT is critical towards the fight against corruption in Nigeria as it facilitated transparency, made tracking and tracing of activities easier and has enabled government to save billions of naira.
According to him, the implementation of the TSA, BVN has helped government save billions of naira, eliminated ghost workers and made tracking and tracing of activities of government especially the fight against corruption easier.
“President Muhammadu Buharis’s agenda is fighting corruption, insecurity, facilitating and diversifying the economic and this has been majorly achieved with the use of ICT.
“Though corruption has not been eliminated completely, but it limits it and makes it transparent because
transparency and accountability is put to use. So if there is a
success story for this administration, it is the TSA because it has made substantial impact. If not because of TSA we wouldn’t be where we
are today,” he said.
Earlier, the Minister of Communications and Digital Economy Dr. Isa Ali Pantami, represented by MD/CEO Nigerian Communications Satellite (NIGCOMSAT) LTD Dr. Abimbola Alale, said ICT has played a great
role in curbing corruption to an extent, adding that over 23 billion naira have been saved by the ministry on ICT projects since the President Mohammadu Buhari’s administration.
Also the Director, Public and Enlightenment Department at the Independent Corrupt Practices Commission (ICPC) Mr. Baba Ashiru, represented by the Head, Media and events at the commission Kemebradikum Badejo, said Nigeria citizens can actually participate in the fight against
corruption, noting that different segments that covers the strata in the society, calling on all to key in and support the fight against corruption by actively participating in the these platforms
“We have the Students anti-corruption clubs meant for students in primary, secondary schools. Students anti-corruption vanguard for tertiary institutions, the NYSC anti-corruption CDS group, the National anti-corruption coalition meant for NGOs, CSOs, faith-based
organisations. Anti-corruption and Transparency Monitory Unit meant for MDAs functioning like a mini-ICPC all in a bid to ensure a Corrupt free society,” she stated.
In his welcome address, the Chairman, Board of Trustees and President of GICN, Edward Ejembi Omaga, ESQ said the conference was convened to address in a unique way the question of corruption as it affects the Nigerian economy, as well as encourage all to join hands in promoting good governance for sustainable development.
According to him, recent protests and uprisings in the country have sent clear messages that the people will no longer tolerate cynical, corrupt practices, saying citizens are demanding transformation of economic, legal and social structures that have been indifferent to accountability.
“No doubt, corruption has disproportionately impacted women, children and the vulnerable, limiting their access to information and public resources.
“At the advent of Covid-19 pandemic, instances abound where inadequate oversight and or lack of transparency on the side of relevant Government Agencies led to the diversion of relief materials from those in need to warehouses or private residences,” he said.
“These corrupt acts when uncovered resulted in massive upheavals from citizens who felt cheated. Today’s Conference therefore, acknowledges the need for the government to restore public trust and faith in our social contract by taking concrete steps to eliminate corruption,” he added.