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ICPC tracks 1,721 poorly executed projects worth N219bn in 5 years – Chairman

ICPC tracks 1,721 poorly executed projects worth N219bn in 5 years – Chairman

Nigeria’s Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) on Monday said its Constituency and Executive Projects Tracking Group (CEPTG) tracked N219.844 billion projects that were poorly executed by 176 federal government agencies.

The commission’s chairman, Dr Musa Adamu Aliyu, disclosed this while briefing newsmen in Lagos.

He said the tracking exercise focused on critical sectors like education, agriculture, healthcare and infrastructure and aimed to ensure that government funds are directed towards impactful projects that benefit vulnerable Nigerians.

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He said the 2024 phase six exercise, which began in November 2023 and continued through the first quarter of 2024, covered key sectors in 26 states and the FCT.

Dr Adamu said 1,721 government-funded projects were tracked during this phase, with investigations ongoing for some identified infractions, including underperformed, shoddily executed, abandoned, uncompleted and hoarded projects.

Regarding plea bargain, Dr Adamu noted that the option saved time and money and helped the government in recovering stolen funds.

Effectiveness of the ICPC in Nigeria

ICPC in Nigeria has faced challenges in its effectiveness despite its mandate to combat corruption. The ICPC was established in 2000 with the goal of receiving and investigating reports of corruption, prosecuting offenders, and educating the public on anti-corruption measures. However, several factors have impacted its effectiveness:

Political interference and lack of utonomy

One major issue affecting the ICPC’s effectiveness is political interference. The commission has faced challenges due to interference from political actors who may seek to influence investigations or hinder the prosecution of corrupt individuals. This interference undermines the independence and autonomy of the ICPC, limiting its ability to carry out its mandate effectively.

Limited prosecutorial success

Despite receiving numerous petitions and conducting investigations, the ICPC has faced difficulties in securing convictions against high-profile individuals involved in corruption. The lack of major convictions early on in its existence raised concerns about its prosecutorial success and deterrence effect on corrupt practices.

Overlapping functions with other agencies

Tensions have arisen between the ICPC and other anti-corruption agencies like the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), leading to duplication of efforts and potential inefficiencies in combating corruption. This overlap has sometimes resulted in challenges related to coordination and resource allocation among these agencies.

Need for enhanced autonomy and political will

To improve its effectiveness, there have been calls for greater autonomy for the ICPC to insulate it from political influences. Additionally, there is a need for stronger political will at all levels to support anti-corruption efforts and ensure that institutions like the ICPC can operate independently and effectively.

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