All Progressives Congress, APC presidential candidate General Muhammadu Buhari yesterday put forward a covenant with Nigerians spelling his blueprint to confront corruption, insecurity and infrastructure decay.
Buhari, who vowed to lead by example in all areas, pledged to declare his assets and liabilities publicly and encourage all his aides to do so. He also promised to stop what he described as the weekly contract bazaar by the Federal Executive Council by inaugurating the National Council on Procurement, the statutory body for contract awards.
President Goodluck Jonathan, the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP immediately faulted Buhari saying that he, Jonathan was in a better position to fight corruption on the ground that Buhari was surrounded by corrupt persons.
President Jonathan said that Buhari’s legacy in government put him as the last person to fight corruption on the ground that he has no respect for the rule of law, further asserting that his military administration jailed people indiscriminately.
The APC presidential candidate said his covenant was derived from the manifesto of his party and his on the ground experience during his recent travels across the country. He also pledged in his covenant to ensure that no inch of Nigerian land is ever taken by terrorists vowing to ensure that all victims of kidnappings including the Chibok girls are quickly recovered.
The 11-point covenant spread through various areas including Corruption and Governance; Access to Justice and Respect for Fundamental Human Rights; Insurgency and Insecurity; Niger Delta; Diversity; Health and Education. Other elements of the candidate’s agenda are Management of the Economy for Shared Prosperity and Sports and Culture.
Following a review of the present situation in each of the enumerated areas, Buhari followed with a pledge on how he would confront the situation.
On corruption and governance, he said:
“No matter how vast our resources, if they are not efficiently utilized, they will only benefit a privileged few, leaving the majority in poverty. I believe if Nigeria does not kill corruption; corruption will kill Nigeria.”
He thus pledged, to “Publicly declare my assets and liabilities and encourage my political appointees to also publicly declare their assets and liabilities.”
”Affirm that our strategy for tackling corruption will not only focus on punishment. Rather, it will also provide incentives for disclosure and transparency.
”Show personal leadership in the war against corruption and also hold all the people who work with me to account.
”Inaugurate the National Council on Procurement as stipulated in the Procurement Act so that the Federal Executive Council, which has been turned to a weekly session of contract bazaar, will concentrate on its principal function of policy making.
”Review and implement audit recommendations by Nigeria Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI).
”Work with the National Assembly towards the immediate enactment of a Whistle Blower Act.
”Work with the National Assembly to strengthen ICPC and EFCC by guaranteeing institutional autonomy including financial and prosecutorial independence and security of tenure of officials.
”Make the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) an autonomous and operational agency.
”Encourage proactive disclosure of information by government institutions in the spirit of the Freedom of Information Act.
”Ensure all MDAs regularly comply with their accountability responsibilities to Nigerians through the National Assembly.
”Work with the leadership of the National Assembly to cut down the cost of governance.
”Present a national anti-corruption Strategy.
Read more: Vanguard