Trouble As Group Calls on CCT To Prosecute Politicians for Not Disclosing Their Assets
- The Code of Conduct Tribunal has been urged to do everything in its power to bring public holders who refused to declare their assets to book
- According to Egalitarian Mission for Africa, many government agencies in Nigeria do not observe the guidelines of the Code of Conduct Act
- The organisation also said that political office holders are also not always truthful to the law in completing the declaration of assets form
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An international civil and not for profit organisation, Egalitarian Mission for Africa, has disclosed that its research has shown that a great number of government agencies in Nigeria do not observe the guidelines of the Code of Conduct Act as instructed by the law.
The group, which alleged that most defaulters of the Act are political office holders, asked the Chairman of the Code of Conduct Tribunal, Justice Danladi Umar, to bring defaulters to book.
The group alleged that many government workers as well as political office holders, including politicians seeking elections have failed to declare their assets through the filling of asset declaration form as expected by the provision of law in accordance with the Code of Conduct Act.
The organisation also said that political office holders are also not always truthful to the law in completing the declaration of assets form.
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The Chairman, Board of Trustees of the organisation, Dr. Kayode Ajulo, in his reaction said, the group will be working in partnership with the Code of Conduct Tribunal to ensure that the law of declaration of assets is strictly adhere to in government organisations.
"The Code of Conduct Tribunal is a body established by the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and duly empowered to try public officials for breach of the provisions of the Code of Conduct Bureau and Tribunal Act.
"The Tribunal is further empowered to impose any of the following punishments;
vacation of office or seat in any Legislative house, as the case may be; disqualification from membership of a legislative house and from holding of any public office for a period not exceeding ten years; and seizure and forfeiture to the State of any property acquired in abuse or corruption of office," he said.
While commending Justice Umar for ensuring adherence to the act, he said the group in partnership with the agency will compile the list of violators.
"We will publish it at the end of the process and will accordingly drag them before the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT) thereafter." Ajulo said.
The group said it is the collective responsibility of every citizen to collaborate with the agencies of government to ensure smooth operation for the greater good of the country. It said citizens are expected to cooperate with the guiding rules and regulations which have been established to promote accountability for the betterment of the country and the people.
"Declaration of assets at the CCB is no news to any public office holder. We all must play our parts in the development of this country. Nigeria will not develop with many violators of the law managing the affairs of government.
“Therefore, we are giving government workers, especially political office holders who are yet to declare their assets to choose the path of integrity and do that within the window of opportunity of the next seven days after which, we will publish the list of defaulters and serve them the necessary letters to face the CCT," he added.
He added that any public office holder or politican seeking election who finds it hard to act in accordance with the rule of law cannot be a good representative of the people.
The group said that President Muhammadu Buhari's administration has less than a year to round off, hence, the need for the CCT to act now, saying it will be a guide for potential public officer holders in the next administration.
I answer to presidency not you - CCT chairman Umar tells NJC, others
The CCT chairman had said the activities of the Tribunal can only be controlled by the Nigerian presidency.
Umar said, unlike other judicial officials, he and his team at CCT are not answerable to bodies that regulate activities of the Nigerian judiciary.
The CCT chairman also presented a signed letter in which a former Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN) said the officials of the Tribunal were not judges.