The Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission, ICPC, has organized a one-day interactive seminar for religious leaders, aimed at getting them to promote integrity, honesty, transparency and accountability in their various religious groups.
Speaking at the seminar which held in Awka, the Anambra State capital, Chairman of ICPC, Ekpo Nta, stressed that religious leaders are important channels of carrying the anti-corruption message to the grassroots, given the fact that majority of Nigerians belong to one religious group or another.
Nta, who was represented at the event by Kingsley Obi, of the commission’s Education Department in Abuja, spoke on the theme: “Religion and its Institutions as Veritable Tools in Combating Corruption’ attracted many Christian, Muslim and traditional leaders.”
He noted that the interactive forum was aimed at enlightening religious leaders on the provisions of the ICPC Act 2000 and the activities of anti-corruption body; as well as to challenge them to effectively play their roles in the anti-corruption fight.
The ICPC boss explained that the commission adopts a holistic approach to combating corruption, through a combination of the enforcement, prevention and public education strategies.
He also disclosed that in order to achieve its prevention and public enlightenment functions, the commission has embarked on several programmes to mobilize different segments of the society to join in the war against corruption.
Nta expressed optimism that the interactive seminar would stimulate vibrant discourse on the best way forward to win the war against corruption by institutionalizing integrity in all spheres of life.
Also speaking during the seminar, the Chairman of the Christian Association of Nigeria, CAN, Anambra State chapter, Tim Okpala, urged Christian leaders and groups to use “the message of the Cross” to promote a modest and an austere lifestyle.
According to him, the life of crass materialism and extreme economic liberalism of this age, is responsible for the worsening plight of the poor and the high level of corrupt practices in the country.
Chief Imam of the Yoruba Muslim community of Nnewi, Anambra State, Sanusi Abdulrasheed, in his words, said that corruption can be eradicated through proper government funding of schools, equal treatment of citizens and job creation.