Connect with us

Legislature

Bill that will uncover corruption in government agencies, private institutions gets senates consideration

Published

on

Spread the love


Bill that will uncover corruption in government agencies, private institutions gets senates consideration

A critical bill that would uncover and prevent the occurrence of financial fraud in government agencies and private institutions in Nigeria when passed and signed into law, has been considered by the Senate on Tuesday.
The bill was sponsored by the Senate Leader, Yahaya Abdullahi (APC – Kebbi North). 
Leading debate on the piece of legislation titled: A bill For An Act to Establish the Chatered Institute of Forensic And Investigative Professionals in Nigeria, the lawmaker, said the bill would assist government in promoting transparency and accountability by putting in place sophisticated mechanisms to prevent fraud and white collar crime, with the use of advanced audit technology. 
According to Abdullahi, the establishment of the Institute of Forensic and Investigative Professionals to develop and train Investigative Professionals in Nigeria, as provided by the bill, would afford government access to home based forensic and Investigative Auditors that “will save Nigerian government the cost of inviting Foreign Forensic Professionals Auditors for fraud investigation as it were in the case of NNPC missing Twenty billion Dollars ($20b) in the year 2014.”
“Amongst its basic functions and objectives, this Bill seeks to create a platform which will produce qualified, dedicated, skilled and professionally trained individuals in the use of Forensic Science and Technological tools and the techniques of forensic and investigative audit in public and private sectors, using international best practices and skills in the discharge of their function 
“Mr President, distinguished colleagues, going by its objectives therefore, this Bill will promote high professional standards, ethics and etiquettes amongst her members in a bid to wipe out cases of compromised auditing process and reporting and camouflaging of Accounting facts, figures and fraud prevention which is currently one of the banes of many practitioners in Nigeria. 
“Interestingly, this Bill when passed will make provision for the training of professionals from other disciplines like Lawyers, Criminologists, and Security Experts, Judicial Officers, Court Registrars, amongst others that are desirous to become skilled in this unique practice of financial fraud prevention, detection and investigation. This is because Forensic and Investigative Professionals involve litigation support, court testimony and expert witness,” the lawmaker said. 
Abdullahi added that, “this Institute has been actively involved in training of professionals from different fields, and has trained about 11,600 professionals within and without, and we have a total number of 9,600 qualified members from different fields like Internal Auditors, External Auditors, Lawyers, Criminologist, Security Experts, and Judicial Staff since its establishment in Nigeria. 
“Prominent Nigerians like Accountant General of the Federation, Auditor General for the Federation etc. are part of the present membership. The institute has about 3,600 students across the country. These students are expected to undergo qualifying examinations from stage one -stage three. 
“Mr. President, distinguished colleagues, the Institute which this Bill seeks to establish is already in existence in many anti-fraud leading countries such as Canada, America, Australia, India amongst others, thereby making it to have partners and associates to work with closely in areas of training, information sharing and exchange of ideas.”
The lawmaker noted that the Institute is a branch of Association of Forensic and Investigative Auditors of Canada, affiliated to Association of Forensic and Investigative Auditors of Asia Pacific, and is also in affiliation with Institute of Forensic Accountant and Investigative Audit of India and affiliated to Institute of Forensic Auditors USA. 
Reeling the benefits of the Bill, Senator Abdullahi said, “one major advantage that this body would bring to our anti-corruption fight and crusade is that, it will not only partner with relevant government agencies, it will also help to train their agents and certify them on the use of science and technology of forensic and investigative audit skills in preventing frauds in their various organizations.”
He added that when the Bill becomes law, it would strengthen the nation’s institutional frameworks in line with global standards and competitiveness; stimulate public confidence, and enhance transparency and accountability in Nigeria’s economic system and our national lives; guarantee safety and Direct Foreign Investments (DFIS) in our the country; 
The Bill, among others, also seeks to leverage on the skills already acquired by thousands trained forensic experts in Nigeria and Africa at large, to offer training and retraining of personnel in order to broaden and ensure active participation from various relevant organs of government; popularize the art and use of science and technology of forensic for fraud prevention; and create employment opportunities.
Contributing to the debate, Senator Ayo Akinyelure, said the passage of the bill “will do a lot in uncovering fraud in our financial system.”
According to him, the establishment of the Chartered Institute of Forensic and Investigative Professionals would uncover funds hidden in banks across Nigeria. 
“Today, Mr. President, many funds are hidden in our financial institutions running into trillions of naira, but because the technology required to uncover these frauds are not in place, the establishment of this particular professional body will go a long way to uncover most of these funds.
“Mr. President, I want to commend the leader of the Senate, for presenting this bill at this material time, when the nation’s economy is in a state of tenterhooks.
“We can no longer fund our budgets, but some Nigerians are richer than this country, and the monies are hidden in the banks for no use.”
The bill which scaled Second Reading after consideration, was referred by the Senate President, Ahmad Lawan, to the Committee on Establishment and Public Service Matters for further legislative input.
The Committee which is Chaired by Senator Ibrahim Shekarau (APC – Kano Central) is expected to turn in its report in two weeks.

Continue Reading
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Legislature

Kogi Rainstorm: Senate wants NEMA to supply relief materials to affected areas

Published

on

By

Spread the love

Kogi Rainstorm: Senate wants NEMA to supply relief materials to affected areas

The Senate on Tuesday mandated its Committee on Special Duties to liaise with the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) to urgently supply relief and rehabilitation materials to Olamaboro communities of Kogi affected by rainstorm.
This, the upper chamber said was with a view to mitigating the sufferings of the victims.
The resolution was sequel to a Point of Order raised by Sen. Isah Jibrin (APC-Kogi) during plenary
The motion was titled “Urgent need for rehabilitation of communities affected by rainstorm in Olamaboro Local Government Area of Kogi”.
The upper chamber also mandated the Committee on Poverty Alleviation and Social Investment Programme (SIP), to liaise with the Federal Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development to provide minimal seed capitals for the victims in the affected communities.
This, the Senate said was to help in facilitating their various economic activities. 

Senator Jibrin while moving the motion expressed worry that with the commencement of the rains, over 200 residential buildings had been destroyed across many communities in the LGA in a rainstorm, following a heavy downpour on April 9.
“Apart from destruction of residential buildings, the devastating rainstorm also ravaged crops, farmlands, schools, worship houses, clinics and businesses in several communities in the LGA.He expressed the concern that many victims of the disaster sustained varying degrees of injury and are receiving medical attention at various health centres within the LGA and neighbouring LGAs.Hence he said, the disaster has created a serious humanitarian crisis as families are rendered homeless and their means of livelihood and properties woxth millions of naira destroyed by the rainstorm, thereby creating a situation of internal displacement.
He listed the major affected communities to inlude Ogugu Central, Ogane~0forachi, Emodida, Iyono, Emagaba No.1, Emenega, Emonoja-Aludu, Eegahimotu and Adupi Emoriko in Ogugu Dtstrict. In addition to many others within Okpo and Imane communities.

Contributing, Sen. Yakubu Oseni called on the Federal Government to provide succor to the  affected communities by coming to their aid

Continue Reading

Legislature

Nigeria can no longer Pretend, there are firearms in wrong Hands – Senator Bamidele

Published

on

By

Spread the love

Nigeria can no longer Pretend, there are firearms in wrong Hands – Senator Bamidele

By Joseph Sunday

The chairman Joint committee on Justice and Human Rights said the committee is trying to amend the act in a way that Nigeria can have a one stop shop in the maritime sector.

Senator Opeyemi stated this during the presentation of the Exclusive Economic zone Act amendment Bill and the Fire Arms amendment Bill by stakeholders.

The chairman told journalists that Nigeria cannot pretend, it has arms and ammunition in wrong hands.
“Stiffer punishment should be served as sanction to anyone in possession of fire arms without license.”

He said section 33(4) can take care of any lacuna in the act that has to do with management and ownership of our mineral resources. He posited that an amendment Bill can alter the constitution to provide for any additional property or minerals not covered by the constitution.

In another development, Senator Opeyemi Bamidele called on state Governors and other stakeholders to do the needful in the interest of the public by granting independence to the judiciary in their states. He said “no body stands to lose anything “
The national assembly has granted the judiciary independence at the Federal level through the passage of necessary laws.

Continue Reading

Legislature

Insecurity: Nigeria under siege, Senate raises the alarm

Published

on

By

Spread the love

Insecurity: Nigeria under siege, Senate raises the alarm

The Senate has raised the alarm that Nigeria is presently under siege from murderous non – state actors, whose activities are threatening the cooperate existence of the country.

To make the matter more scary records from the United Nations Regional Centre for Peace and Disarmament in Africa (UNREC), indicated that out of 500 million Illegal weapons circulating in West Africa, 350 million, which represents 70%, are domiciled in Nigeria for evil activities of criminally minded people .

Senator Uba Sani (APC Kaduna Central), Made the frightening submissions at the public hearing organised by the Senate Joint Committee on Judiciary, Human Rights and Legal Matters, Navy and Marine Transport on Firearms Act 2004 ( Amendment) Bill 2021 and Exclusive Economic Zones Act 2010 ( Repeal and Re – Enactment) Bill 2021.

He said the country needs to urgently address the worrisome situation.

Sani the sponsor of the Firearms (Amendment) Bill lamented that proliferation of illegal arms and ammunition in the country with little or no control by relevant authorities has profound implications for collective survival of Nigerians and Nigeria.

He said, “We are gathered here to deal with a matter that has profound implications for our collective survival.

“We are under siege from murderous non – state actors. They have been acquiring arms illegally, maiming our people and threatening the continued existence of our dear Nation. 

“We either take measures to deny them of the oxygen that sustains their nefarious activities, or we watch helplessly as they overrun us and our country.”

The main aim of the proposed amendments to the Firearms Act, he explained, is to curtail the proliferation of illegal arms and bring the existing law in line with global best practices.

He lamented that “The United Nations Regional Centre for Peace and Disarmament in Africa (UNREC), recently reported that the proliferation of illicit small arms and light weapons (SALW) in Nigeria, has reached an alarming proportion.

“Analysts estimate that out of the 500 million weapons circulating in West Africa, 350 million, which represents 70% of such weapons, can be found in Nigeria.

“A pointer to this effect can be cited with the incidence of January 31st , 2017, when the Nigeria Customs Service confirmed the interception and seizure of 661 Pump Action Riffles imported from China into our country.

“More recently in Benue State, a local militia had the temerity to kill an Army Captain and 11 Soldiers not to talk of reign of terror in Owerri, Imo State by Gunmen who launched coordinated attacks on the Police headquarters and Correctional Centre .

“Something must be done urgently to curtail arms proliferation, the very reason for the proposed amendment bill on  the existing Firearms Act”, he said .

He listed the five major objectives of the amendment bill to include imposition of stiffer penalties for offences under the Act .

One of such penalties is the one under section 27 (sub section 1c), which proposed increase of fine from N1,000 to N1million .

Representative of Chief of Air Staff, Air Vice Marshall Oladayo Amao, in his submission, objected to the N1million proposed fine on illegal possession of firearms arguing for its upward review to N2million.

Earlier in his opening remarks, the Chairman of the joint Commitee, Senator Micheal Opeyemi Bamidele (APC Ekiti Central), said the purpose of the two bills were to further strengthen the Nigerian extant laws against illegal firearms possession and proliferation as well as making provisions of the Act on Exclusive Economic Zone to be in line with global practices as far as protection of the Nation’s territorial sea or waters are concerned.

Continue Reading

Trending