The United States Embassy in Nigeria has pledged its assistance in the fight against corruption by strengthening public communication and advocacy.
The U.S envoy to Nigeria, Mr. W. Stuart Symington, at a collaboration with CLEEN Foundation with the International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs Office made the commitment at the formal launch of the ‘Public Engagement for Law Enforcement Agencies in Nigeria’ project.
Represented by embassy’s Counselor for Public Affairs, Aruna Amirthanayagam, the ambassador the goal of this project remains to strengthen relations between criminal justice actors, anti-graft agencies, and citizens through improved and effective communications.
He expressed the hope that the pilot project will focus on supporting the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission and the Nigeria Police Force to provide timely and relevant information to the public on their efforts to fight crime and corruption.
He observed that “Over the past year, the U.S. Embassy has been working closely with civil society, the Nigeria Police Force and the EFCC on various initiatives to enhance government transparency, improve security, and investigate and prosecute complex financial crimes. This project supports those efforts by enhancing communication with the public and building trust with law enforcement organizations.
“I applaud the Police and the EFCC’s participation in anti-corruption and open government activities over the past year. Participation in initiatives such as the Open Government Partnership demonstrates commitment to fighting corruption and reaffirms law enforcement agencies’ duty to make Nigeria a better place for all citizens.”
While commending CLEEN Foundation, he said non-governmental organisations and the media are critical in facilitating “positive engagement between the public and government agencies, and we’re glad they will carry this project forward,” while tasking the media and average citizens to hold government accountable.
“In order for government to provide for the needs of citizens, there has to be communication and engagement with the public. We hope that this partnership will help contribute to that goal.”