Buhari reassures citizens of transparency, accountability, commends ICAN

President Muhammadu Buhari


• Protesters ask President to prosecute SGF, others or resign

President Muhammadu Buhari yesterday again reassured Nigerians of his administration’s commitment to good governance through transparency and accountability.One way the administration is strengthening governance institutions is through the timely implementation of the accrual based International Public Sector Accounting Standards (IPSAS).

The IPSAS places emphasis on receipts and expenditure trends with a view to deepening public financial management reform aimed at blocking leakages.Buhari, who restated one of his presidential campaign promises while addressing the 47th Annual Accountants’ Conference of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria (ICAN) in Abuja, solicited ICAN’s support to deploy modern solutions to check corruption in the country.

He lauded ICAN for its initiatives in that regard, which he noted included the establishment of its Accountants Disciplinary Tribunal to punish erring members and its Whistle Blowing Support Fund.

Represented by the Accountant-General of the Federation, Ahmed Idris at the ICAN Conference with the theme: Nigeria First: Accountancy, Nation Building And The Future, he said his government remained resolute to deliver good governance to Nigerians.

“Transparency and accountability remain key elements in the general conduct of government businesses hence this administration is fully committed to the timely implementation of accrual based IPSAS with a view to deepening financial management reforms.

“I enjoin the Institute to strengthen and deepen collaboration with government at all levels and to proffer solutions to the challenges of economic growth and development,” he added.

Speaking earlier, President of ICAN, Ismailia Muhammadu Zakari, pointed out that as part of renewed efforts at improving accountability and service delivery, ICAN would launch an Accountability Index, which he said, was the first of its kind for assessing public finance management in the public sector.

Zakari added that the institutions to be assessed include the executive arm of governments in the Federal, states and councils, as well as the legislature and judiciary at all levels.

Meanwhile, protesters yesterday stormed the streets in Abuja, urging President Buhari to prosecute alleged corrupt members of his government.The group, led by Charles Oputa, popularly called Charley Boy demanded that the president should quit office if he would not prosecute them.

They cited the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Babachir Lawal and other top government officials.A co-convener of the protest, Deji Adeyanju, said the essence of the protest was to ask Buhari “some pertinent questions about the seriousness and sincerity of Buhari’s anti-graft war.

“If the president could order the raiding of homes of some judges suspected to be corrupt, we demand similar treatment for the suspended SGF) and others.”Also, the convener of Campaign for Democracy, Bako Usman, stressed the need for the president’s resignation.

“Buhari said he would fight corruption and Nigerians voted for him on that basis. If he cannot prosecute his alleged corrupt friends, it means that he is also corrupt,” Usman said.The convener of the Coalition in Defence of Nigerian Democracy and Constitution (CDNDC), Ariyo Atoye, urged the Senate to intervene.

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