Encouraging citizen-driven anticorruption fight is and remains the core of Say No Campaign’s activities. The fight against corruption is intensified when independent voices, especially from the grassroots, rise in protest, against any act of corruption and in demand for accountability and social justice. While government may have, in theory, prioritized the fight against corruption and set up legislations and institutions to promote it, without the active cooperation of citizens, who through their active reporting of fraud, monitoring budget and its implementation as well as pressurizing the system to deliver on justice and accountability, the anticorruption fight will remain a political jingle or an excuse to suppress political oppositions.
Similarly, considering citizens are, in most cases, enablers of corruption, it is crucial, for the benefit of the fight against corruption, to have all Nigerians from the different section of the society to buy into the anticorruption fight, building trust and ownership. A fight that is built around the people cannot be undermined by a change in government; it becomes a national movement where every citizen feels that they have a stake in the course of the development of the country. This is the rationale behind Say No Campaign’s deliberate and continuous engagement with Nigerians at different levels of the society, to foster greater awareness for a collective fight against corruption by all citizens.
In 2018 Say No Campaign engaged citizens on all platforms to create awareness against enabling corruption; sensitization on actively participating in government through monitoring of government budget and implementation; actively reporting fraud, petitioning and protesting any act of corruption. From the professionals to the ordinary Nigerian on the street, the message of anticorruption was disseminated using online and offline spaces, radio program and town hall meetings.
Say No Campaign Engaged Lawyers on Anti-corruption, challenged NBA to lead the anti-corruption fight.
At a town hall meeting organized for registered lawyers with the Nigerian Bar Association, Say No Campaign challenged Lawyers to uphold the values of honesty and integrity in their profession as well as strive for social justice.
On the 31st of January 2018, in collaboration with the Nigeria Bar Association, on its fourth discussion series, Say No Campaign held a town-hall meeting with members of the Bar to discuss the role of lawyers in the anti-corruption fight. The meeting was attended by over a hundred and fifty (150) lawyers including representatives from the Open government Initiative and the Ministry of Justice.
Discussions were focused around amplifying the anti-corruption fight. The co-convener of Say No Campaign, Ezenwa Nwagwu, in his address, chided the Bar for its laid-back attitude towards the anti-corruption fight, noting that lawyers are supposed to be its main drivers. He charged them to reflect on their waning respect and use their skills in pursuit of good and not of evil.
Members were educated on the Open Government Initiative and advised to explore and utilize the legal tools available to fight corruption. Benjamin Okolo from the Ministry of Justice, explained the Freedom of Information Act (FIOA), its application and usefulness in fostering transparency, open governance and accountability in public institutions.
At the interaction session, concerns were raised over noncompliance with the FOIA by government institution. Mr. Benjamin however, urged members to seek redress according to the provisions of the Act to force compliance, He noted that the Act risk being rendered ineffective if not fully explored by lawyers who have the powers to make it bite.
In response to the challenge to drive the anticorruption fight, members of the Bar resolved to set up a network of Lawyers against corruption in the country to monitor and track corruption cases and to seek for social justice.
Say No Campaign Inaugurated LAWNAC, launched the DoroCorruption Mobile App
In a bid to encourage active participation of Lawyers in the demand for social accountability and justice, Say No Campaign inaugurated the Lawyers’ Network Against Corruption (LAWNAC) and launched it anticorruption mobile App (DoroCorruption App) to support citizens effort to report fraud and pursue social change.
The event was attended by the Special Adviser to the president on prosecution Chief Okoi Obono Oblah, the Senior Adviser to the vice president on Rule of Law, Representatives from the Economic and financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offenses Commission (ICPC), MacArthur foundation, civil society organizations and members of the Unity Bar Abuja.
Commending the initiative, members were admonished to become ambassadors of the anti-corruption fight by pursuing honesty and integrity and tasked to use their expertise and platform to hold public officials accountable and provide support to the anti-corruption agencies.
Over one hundred and five (105) lawyers were registered as members and six (6) officials inaugurated. The newly inaugurated chairman, Ezenwa Anumnu, in his remark, gave the assurance that through the platform, Lawyers will ensure that the anti-corruption fight succeeds. Likewise the network will work with aggrieved citizens on corruption related petitions to achieve justice.
At the launch of the DoroCorruption Mobile App, citizens were encouraged to download the App, which is available on Android and IOS mobile devices, to be well informed and updated on corruption related cases, as well as, encouraged to directly report corruption on the App, as it is witnessed. The App was also designed to be a repository that feeds the LAWNAC and the anti-corruption agencies with reports and petitions as inputted by its users. Citizens will likewise have the opportunity to monitor and track corruption cases using the App.
The Special Adviser to the Vice president on the Rule of Law applauded the initiative and encouraged citizens to download and take advantage of the platform provided by the App to report any act of corruption, monitor and track cases to ensure they are brought to logical conclusion.
Say No Campaign Policy Dialogue on State of the Nation
Say No Campaign with support from the MacArthur Foundation organized a policy dialogue on State of the Nation in June 2018, with various stakeholders, to discuss the challenges of insecurity, anti-corruption, health and elections in the country, as well as, brainstorm possible solutions and way forward.
Participants who were pulled from the anti-corruption agencies, health sector, Independent National Electoral Commission and the Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) deliberated extensively on several issues in the sectors and noted that corruption continued to be a major setback to the performance of the sectors. Besides recommending sterner punishment for corruption and a strict adherence to the ‘no sacred cow’ position of the government; participants expressed worry over the palpable insecurity, especially, the rampaging activities of the herdsmen across the middle-belt. Hence, recommended strengthening of the existing policing system, as against restructuring the institution, to perform optimally.
Some of the issues raised in regards to security were:
- State policing: participants deliberated on if restructuring the police force to provide for state policing will address the security demands in various states. While the prospect of reducing the burden on the federal government and allowing states to cater to their unique security demands was exciting, the failure of some states to meet their responsibility of paying their workers their due salaries, was a major concern for the proponent of the idea. Similarly, some participants also expressed worries over the weak State Assemblies unable to provide proper oversight on the State Executive. Therefore, there was the fear that irresponsible governors could use the state apparatus/police to their advantage and terrorize political opponents.
- Funding: Concerns were raised over the poor funding of the institution that has resulted in the shortage of personnel and poor training of staff to manage the security challenges across the states. Participants suggested that proliferating the security outfit, by creating different security agencies, amounts to duplication of roles, which is wasteful and encourages redundancy, hence, the police institution should be adequately funded and managed to perform optimally and other agencies duplicating their function, be shut down.
- Broken-down family and traditional system: Some participants observed that unresolved conflicts could be the core of the security challenges in some states, therefore, advised that the family and traditional structures that mitigate and resolve conflicts in communities should be restored.
Overall, participants advised that Internal corruption in the process of recruitment and resource management need to be addressed; bribery at the nation’s borders that promote illegal importation of arms need to be checked; and an adequate deployment of security agencies to local communities in states need to be ensured.
Participants noted the following challenges:
- Low conviction rate of high profile public officials:
Participants worried that the low conviction rates among political leaders in government, dragging investigation and mild sanctions are increasing citizens lack of confidence in the anticorruption fight.
- Citizens are not playing their roles in actively demanding for accountability in promoting the anticorruption fight. This is evident in the apparent tolerance for corruption and the readiness by citizens to sell their votes during elections.
- Concentration on fiscal corruption while neglecting other types of corruption:
Participants observed that attention is focused on addressing fiscal corruption to the detriment of other types of corruption such as political, professional, electoral, and administrative corruption, which equally affect the development of the country.
- Absence of anticorruption institutions at state and local government levels:
Participated observed that there are no functioning anticorruption institutions of states or effective civil society groups monitoring and fighting corruption at state and local government levels. Attention is concentrated at the federal even as corruption thrive at the state and local levels unchecked and unsanctioned.
Participants therefore recommended
- Continuous sensitization on the cost implication of corruption at the grassroots level by CSOs and anticorruption agencies.
- That the judiciary should complement the anticorruption fight with more convictions and give sterner punitive measures with deterrent effect.
- To reform the reward system to bridge the unequal income gap.
On Health :
Various challenges of the health sector were identified to be
- Poor funding: Participants expressed concern over the poor state of public health institutions and broken-down facilities due to the poor funding and management of the sector.
- Implementation of the National Health Act: Concerns were raised over the partial implementation of the National Health Act which participant noted could have resolved most of the health care challenges in the country, including the National Health Insurance Scheme for the benefit of the ordinary Nigerian.
- Reconstituting the Nigeria Medical and Dental Council: Participants observed that the absence of the council had resulted in the absence of leadership in the sector to address issues of conflicts and interests among the several different unions exiting. It was also responsible for the chaos and incessant industrial actions persisting in the public health sector.
Participants recommended proper funding as advised by the UN, a full implementation of the National Health Act and an immediate reconstitution of the Nigeria Medical and Dental Council.
Concerns were raised over the following:
- Unsanctioned election offences:
Participants observed some unsavoury trends in recent elections that can mare the credibility of 2019 general elections. Some of which were open campaigning and brandishing of party branded materials at polling units and vote buying and selling,
- Poor citizen sensitization on voting, digital transmission and the function of the PVC:
Participants also expressed concerns over poor voter education which may lead to high number of void votes, confusion with party names, understanding voting processes and low voters’ turnout.
- Economics of campaigns: Participants observed that the high financial competition among political parties and money-centric campaigns have created a winner-takes-it-all situation which has made Nigerian elections a ‘do or die affair’. This trend, participants noted, need to change to create a healthy competition in the 2019 general election.
- Poor attention to state and local government elections:
Participants noted that attention by state and non-station actors is focused on elections at the federal level. State and local government elections lack thorough scrutiny, which does not help strengthen the electoral system of the country or encourage credible leadership at the grassroots.
Therefore the Independence National Electoral Commission (INEC) was advised as to:
- actively monitoring state and local government elections to build a strong electoral system in the country
- ensure the speedy investigation and prosecution of electoral offenses and prohibit brandishing of party branded wares at polling units.
- Intensify voter education activity and sensitization, especially on vote buying.
SAY NO CAMPAIGN COMMUNITY TOWN-HALL ON ANTI-CORRUPTION
One of the numerous challenges of the anti-corruption fight in Nigeria is the popular belief among citizens that an anti-corruption war ought to be driven and maintained by the government, a stance that fuels citizens’ reluctance to genuinely take responsibilities and ownership of the fight. Apart from providing the relevant legislation and institutions necessary for the fight, the onus for a successful war against corruption lies with the citizens who have the mandate, as electorates, to demand that public leaders are accountable in their respective positions.
Hence, Say No campaign embarked on a sensitization campaign in the area councils of the FCT, to create the platforms for the discussion of corruption among the different groups of the community members, encouraging them to reflect on the danger of enabling the menace and their role in combating it.
A hundred participants in each area council was targeted and the participants were selected across the various group of traditional leaders, religious groups, women and youth groups, market and transport unions among other residents. These communities were engaged on the same anti-corruption messages and all had similar ideas on how community members can collectively engage the fight.
AT THE KWALI AREA COUNCIL
Participants recommended that the most important step the government must take in fighting corruption at the grassroots, is to set up EFCC desk in all Area Councils and Local Government in the federation. In buttressing this point, they insisted that while attention is concentrated at the center, severe acts of corruption are ongoing at the local governments and area councils, unchecked and the absence of the anti-corruption agencies in those communities make it extremely difficult for members to report or follow up on a petition.
Members applauded the initiative for providing a platform for a genuine discussion of corruption as perpetrated by the ordinary Nigerians and advised that such discussion was necessary to remind the society that to win an anti-corruption fight, both the people and the government must be sincere and committed; the fight must be happening concurrently, both at the top and bottom.
At Gwagwalada Area Council, community members noted that an anti-corruption fight must begin with addressing the root cause of corruption which is highly embedded in poverty and unemployment and government has a major responsibility in that regards. They stressed that honesty and integrity will be meaningless to a hungry man who is unjustly treated and with a huge debt to pay. They also advised on improved remuneration by the government that reflects the reality of the day, as only then will individuals be encouraged to desist from enabling corruption or selling of votes, giving the opportunity.
While acknowledging that a laid back attitude by community members toward governance has fueled the reckless abandonment of projects across the communities, resulting in the underdevelopment of communities, participants appealed to have a representation of the anti-corruption agencies at the area councils to facilitate an effective monitoring of projects and combat the ruthless diversion of funds ongoing at the area councils and local governments in the country.
At Bwari Area Council participants insisted that retail corruption, as perpetrated by artisans, has equal disastrous effect on the society. Some of these fraudulent acts which included adulterating and injecting food items with harmful chemicals and substances to forcefully ripen and boost the appearances of farm produce to increase sales and profits, as well as, profiteering are equally malicious and detrimental to the health and development of the community. Hence, should be tackled and the culture of honesty and integrity built among traders and community members.
Participants therefore resolved that to achieve a citizen driven anti-corruption fight, there is a need for community members to organize for social and continuous auditing in their communities to facilitate the demand for accountability and promote social responsibility among community members.
SUMMARY OF ABAJI TOWN HALL
Participants believed that pervasive moral decadence and laziness are the major reasons corruption has persisted and domesticated itself in families and individual relationships. Members opined that religious and traditional leaders have the most responsibility of reawakening the value system of the society to encourage individuals to shun corrupt acts. They encouraged these institutions to preach the message of truth, justice and fairness, and re-frame for conferring ceremonial titles on individuals with questionable sources of wealth. They emphasized that ex convicts should have no place in leadership, either at community, state or national level.
The effect of corruption in these communities were evident in the abandoned projects (Rinba Ebagi road and Abuja University of Technology), fraudulently executed projects (boreholes), lack of amenities such as pedestrian bridges, banks and unfulfilled campaign promises in these localities. Hence, members opted to actively engage the fight by organizing for effective monitoring of budget and its implementation in their communities.
This led to the setting up of a monitoring group in each community tasked with coordinating community voices to articulate the needs of the communities for advocacy, organize community planned actions and track project implementation at their communities.
SUMMARY OF GWAGWALADA TOWN HALL
Participants expressed their desire to address issues of corruption in their community and actively engage in the demand for accountability as well as naming and shaming of corrupt persons to deter others and discourage their adoption as role models in their communities. As with other area councils, members also set up their anti-corruption monitoring group to track project implementation as well as coordinate petitions and anti-corruption efforts by community members.
As community members become conscious of their ability to impact the provision of social infrastructures and amenities, they become more open to receive and act on specific anti-corruption messages that encourage the demand for transparency and accountability. Aggregating these voices across the country will promote the demand for accountability and translate to the delivery of good governance at all levels. These townhall meetings have therefore become a wake-up call for citizens to rise up to their responsibilities and contributions to good governance.
Say No Campaign commemoration of the 2018 World Anticorruption Day.
Say No Campaign convened civil society organizations working on anticorruption related issues as well as the labour union in a rally at the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja on Thursday, 6th of December 2018, to commemorate the world anticorruption day, under the theme I stand for a corrupt free Nigeria: We Can Achieve It.
In marking the world anticorruption day, Say No Campaign convened a meeting of relevant civil society organizations working on anticorruption to foster a united front and showcase strong collaborations among CSOs working against corrupt Corruption in Nigeria. This meeting was attended by 12 active anticorruption CSOs who deliberated on how to achieve an impactful celebration of the event.
Having decided to have a weeklong activity in commemoration of the auspicious day, which is the 9th of December, Say No Campaign had the task of mobilizing Nigerians enmasse to march and register their disdain for corruption and pledge an active role to aid in combating corruption in Nigeria.
Hence on the 6th of December, stakeholders convened at the Unity fountain in Abuja FCT, for the March. At the press briefing before the commencement of the March, speakers spoke on the importance of staging a collective stance against corrupt, the implication of staying aloof in the face of corruption and the expectations of what a fight against corruption ought to be.
Speakers also seized the platform to celebrate certain unknown heroes of the anticorruption fight who have staked a lot to resist any act of corruption and urged Nigerians to uphold the values of integrity, honesty and accountability.
Government was remained of its pledge to curb corruption and encouraged to meet the expectations of the people and liberate the country of the menace.
The procession which lasted for 3 hours ended with a pledge by all present to continue to fight for a corrupt free Nigeria, beginning with the self.
As planned, CSOs working on anticorruption projects were represented and a strong collaboration was visible throughout the engagement.
Monthly DOROCORRUPTION Radio Sensitization Programs:
On its radio platform, Say No Campaign embarked on various sensitization programs to encourage the discussion of corruption among citizens and promote citizens’ ownership of the fight against corruption. Issues highlighted and the patterns of discussions were designed to spur listeners’ interest in actively participating in governance and encourage them to consciously demand for public accountability and social justice. Hence, different issues were addressed in each month of the year, most of which focused on the role of citizens in combating corruption in Nigeria.
TACKLING CORRUPTION IN PUBLIC SCHOOLS
In the month of July 2018, Say No Campaign adopted the Cable News report on the pimping of female secondary school students in public schools in Plateau and Lagos State, for N5000 on its DoroCorruption radio platform on Wazobia FM, to discuss the role of Stakeholders in tackling corruption in public schools. Five weeks in the month of July was dedicated to this discussion with inputs from the National Council for Child Rights Nigeria (NACCRAN) National Council of Women Society (NCWS), Civil Society Action Coalition on Education For All (CSACEFA) Education Psychologist, Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offenses (ICPC) FIDA- the federation of women lawyers and listeners through their contributions via phone calls and whatsapp messages. Interactions on the program revealed lack of awareness by parents and students on how to report cases of abuse and extortion, demand for accountability and perform effective oversight on school management.
During the first week of discussion, cable news was invited to the program to share the details of the report with the public. The revelation which included gross sexual abuse, child labour, extortion, poor living and sanitary conditions as well as insecurity in the public schools especially the highlighted Lantang and Queens College, led to the decision to invite the Federal Ministry of Health to the next edition of the program, to listen to public complaints and share with the public the ministry’s plans to address these illicit misconduct and gross corruption.
Similarly, Students who featured on the show as guests or contributed via phone calls, debunked the ICPC claims of an anticorruption club in their schools and reported that their schools have been turned into a den of sexual abuses and exploitations, especially, of the female students by school officials. Some of the parents reported that they transferred their female children to other schools on any report of sexual abuses from school officials. Another parent who did report to the school management complained that instead of a stringent disciplinary measure, the erring teacher was rather transferred to another public school out of the state.
Parents who phoned in complained about public schools collecting PTA fee without holding PTA meetings and even where the meetings are held, they had not been useful in addressing issues of corruption or abuse.
Several attempts were made to bring the ministry of education to the program without success as letters delivered were unattended. Hence, relevant stakeholders like CSACEFA, NACCRAN, FIDA, NCWS, and the ICPC were invited in the subsequent weeks to deliberate on how best to address the situation and sensitize listeners on the Child Right Act, how to seek redress and how parents can leverage the PTA to improve their oversight function and demand for accountability and justice.
Sensitization on Citizens’ Role in combating corruption in the Health Sector
On the DoroCorruption sensitization radio program, Say No Campaign explored corruption in the health sector with emphasises on the role of citizens in ameliorating it. Stakeholders invited were the National Health Insurance Scheme, Ministry of Health, Health Reform Foundation of Nigeria (HERFON), TRACKA, the National Medical Association and CSOs. Some of these organizations who honoured the invitation claimed that Issues of non-implementation of the National Health Act, poor oversight by citizens on the management of the health care centres, abandoned health facilities, poor salary scheme, and the poor professional ethics by practitioners have escalated incidences of corruption in the sector.
Stakeholders on the program also decried the non- implementation of the mandatory 1% of annual national budget allocation to the health care centres, which has resulted in poor funding and management of the centres across the nation. They also claimed that primary health centres across the nation has remained underfunded because community members are unaware that beyond the federal government allocation to the Primary health centres for communities, the state also has the responsibility to appropriate for the sector, so state governments ignore this responsibility unquestioned.
Listeners, therefore, were advised to actively oversight the sector, its facilities and management and demand for completion of identified abandoned health facility projects. Similarly, citizens were educated on the benefit of the National Health Insurance Scheme and the Patient Bill of Right, to nudge them to demand for a full implementation of the National Health Act and to assist in curtailing unprofessional practices in the sector.
In other to sanitize the sector, the guests on the program advocated for continuous petitioning of erring professionals. By laying formal complaints to SERVICOM, Public compliant Commission, Consumer protection council, Human Right Commission and even the Hospital management, individuals and institutions will become more accountable to the people and public service delivery will be improved. Citizens were therefore encouraged to take actual action in the face of corruption, rather than cast aspersions and make verbal complaints and abuses.
DoroCorruption radio Program on the role of citizens in attaining good governance
In the month of September, Say No campaign featured Alliance for Credible Election (ACE) and AFRIMIL to sensitize the public on their responsibilities in attaining a corrupt free society. Listeners were admonished to promote credible election by shunning vote selling and buying stressing that the implication of vote selling is that citizens willingly sell their right to participate in governance, monitor and demand for good leadership.
During the different episodes of the program, citizens were reminded that the quest for good governance and a corrupt free society begins with the quality of election held and the credibility of any election is largely dependent on the conduct of the electorates as well as the electoral officials. Hence, it behoves on citizens to ensure that the process of deciding the country’s leadership is not compromised by vote buying and selling.
The various guests on the program stressed that vote buying only gives temporary relief and the long term consequences is witnessed in dilapidated infrastructure, poor health, school and a depressed economy.
Vote buying as stressed by ACE is never in the interest of the populace but devised to serve the interest of the greedy politicians who desperately seek power for their selfish interest, hence, community members she insisted, need to organize and sensitize their members to reject the practice, develop their memorandum detailing their communal needs and use it to negotiate with the politicians, to facilitate good representation and quality service delivery.
Similarly, Centre for Democracy and Development, CDD, analysed the implication of vote buying and selling on the development of Nigeria focusing on its effects on the citizens and advised Nigerians to be wary of selling their future for a paltry sum incapable of meeting immediate needs.
AFRICMIL, in related discussion on corruption, advised listeners to employ available tools such as the whistle blower policy to expose corruption. Although the whistleblower policy has remained a policy lacking in any legal backing that can ensure the protection of the blower, listeners were encouraged to blow the whistle out of moral responsibilities, which is to frown at all kinds of corruption in other to build a better society.
Phone calls during the programs revealed massive ignorance among the listeners on the whistleblower policy, hence, citizens were educated on the procedure for blowing the whistle and the implication of blowing a false whistle.
DOROCORRUPTION RADIO PROGRAM SENSITIZATION ON THE ROLE OF CITIZENS IN ENSURING ADEQUATE UTILIZATION OF RECOVERED LOOT
Sensitization program in October was focused on the need for citizens to demand for accountability especially on the utilization and management of recovered loot as well as encourage citizens to build personal integrity and celebrate men and women of proven integrity in their spaces.
The ex- president of the Nigeria Bar Association, Abuja chapter, was on the radio program to discuss the relevance of identifying and celebrating people of integrity in our country and communities. He reminded listeners that celebrating these group of people forces the society to remember their stories, reflect on their values and imitate their behaviour. He also encourage listeners to acknowledge ordinary citizens who have stood in the face of corruption, had the opportunity to defraud the system but resisted, stressing that by celebrating this category of people the society will encourage them to sustain their values and remain steadfast, as well as encourage individuals to emulate their behaviours.
In a second episode, the demand for public accountability, especially, as it concerned the management of the recovered properties and the Paris Club bailout to states were discussed. Both the Nigeria Labour Congress and ANEEJ were present to emphasise the need for citizens to become active participants in demanding for public accountability. Information, they both insist, is key to asking the right question.
NLC urged listeners to ask their state government why they have failed to comply with the directive of the national government to use the different tranches released to pay up outstanding salaries and pensions. He noted that citizens must embrace community actions that force the hands of government to be responsible; stressing that strikes and protests are acceptable means of getting the government to care for its people.
ANEEJ in another conversation on the program encouraged citizens to monitor the management and utilization of recovered funds. He explained that the reason conditions were given for the repatriation of looted funds is to ensure transparency and give citizens the opportunity to monitor its management to dissuade relooting. Hence, citizens need to access every information in respect to the funds and its utilization as agreed to and ensure judicious use, where there is any suspicious activities, citizens can report to MANTRA or through SAYNO CAMPAIGN DORO APP for onward engagement.
ANEEJ also advised listeners to ensure that their state government meet the requirement of the National Cash Transfer scheme so that they can benefit from the social relief provided by the national government. He explained that only 20 states have met the requirement for the scheme and their indigenes are benefitting from the program, other states must begin to question their government on why there are yet to meet or comply with the requirement to enable its people access the program.
October sensitization was centred on empowering the listeners with information that will spur them to ask the relevant question that will improve governance. Awareness created in the area of recovered loot and utilization as well as the social scheme will compel listeners to begin to question their state government on the management of the funds received.
DoroCorruption Sensitization program on citizens as enablers of corruption
Say No Campaign created further awareness on dorocorruption in areas of citizen contribution to retail corruption; the ripple effect of Artisan corruption and moral bankruptcy among citizens; citizens and Corruption in public service and the role religious leaders in combating corruption.
Listeners during the program revealed that poverty and the poor economic state of the country has driven them to be dishonest and fraudulent in their trading transactions. Although they acknowledged the health risks and danger their impure actions pose to the unsuspecting ordinary Nigerian and accepted their roles in perpetrating corruption, they insisted that government need to improve the economic situation of the country if corruption is to e eradicated.
Deliberating on tackling corruption in citizen spaces, the representative of the Civil service Commission and religious leaders talked on the role of the commission and religious institutions in promoting the anticorruption fight. Contributions from listeners exposed citizens frustrations with the religious bodies for promoting corruption through the undue recognition giving to the questionable wealthy individuals as well as the monetary pressure mounted on congregations at worship, which forces the highly gullible to become susceptible to corruption.
At the end of the discussion, all agreed that there is a need for every institution to self reflect and address corruption from within and to put up stiff measures against corruption and punish offenders so as to serve as deterrent to others.
The objective of these conversions held in the month of November was to promote the adoption of the values of honesty and integrity among citizens, educate listeners on the ripple effect of retail corruption and encourage Stakeholders, religious and public institutions, engagement with anti-corruption messages.
DoroCorruption sensitization program on Corruption in the power sector
Say No Campaign beamed its torchlight on the power sector, highlighting metering, estimated bills, extortion, illegal connection as ways of promoting corruption in the sector and also educating her listeners on consumers’ rights and the procedures for exercising their rights in the sector. Discussions were summed up in the following themes:
- Demystifying the power Sector and understanding the rights of the consumer
- Mitigating corruption in the power sector: The nagging issue of metering
- Curbing corruption in the power sector through citizen’s active complaints
The National Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) and the Public Compliant Commission were on air during the discussions which lasted for the entire month to enlighten the audience on the issues of metering and the process of securing meters. The NERC explained that Nigerians are not expected to pay to have a meter installed in their homes. It is the sole responsibility of the Distribution Companies (DisCo). However, an agreement can be arrived at with a customer and the companies to ‘pay’ to obtain the meter, after which the customer can reclaim the value of the money paid, in form of electricity units loaded in the meter for use. However, members of the public who wish to adopt this process of securing a meter were advised to have a clear contract with the DisCo Company, detailing the agreement and to understand how to seek redress in case of a breach.
Nigerians were also educated on the procedure for laying complaints and grievances, contact information and hotlines to lay complaints and assured of timeous response to complaints registered.
Listeners were encouraged to promote legal connection of electricity, report erring DisCo staffs and petition the companies when their rights are short-changed, in other to sanitize the sector and promote professionalism in service delivery.
This interaction was aimed at encouraging citizens to become active contributors to improving the power sector in the country.