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New Senate Bill Will Curb Illicit Wealth Acquisition Among Civil Servants, Says Akinyelure

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Chairman, Senate Committee on Ethics, Privileges and Public Petition, Senator Ayo Akinyelure

Sunday Aborisade, Abuja
The Chairman Senate Committee on Ethics, Privileges and Public Petitions, Senator Ayo Akinyelure, has said a new bill sponsored by him in the Senate would curb wealth acquisition among civil servants through illegal means, when passed into law.
The Senate Committee on Establishment is currently working on the proposed legislation, titled, ” A bill for an Act to establish the National Agency for Ethics, Values and Integrity Compliance and for related matters.”
Akinyelure, in an interview with our correspondent on Saturday in Abuja, said the bill which passed second reading last week, enjoyed the overwhelming support of his fellow senators. 
The Senator, who is representing the Ondo Central Senatorial District in the Natoonal Assembly, said the proposed legislation would also curb, abuse of power favouritism, and other unethical behaviours in work place.
He said, “The bill will check all forms of abuse of power, lack of accountability, poor attitudes to work, and unruly behaviours while at work.
” It will prescribe compliance to basic ethos, citizens reorientation, code of professional conducts,  cohesion, and corruption prevention.
“It will end all forms of favouritism and illicit wealth acquisition among civil servants.
“If you just acquire wealth illegally, it will fish you out. Some people are earning N2.5m per annum in the civil service, yet they are acquiring properties work billions of naira in choice areas across the country.
” They are still there in the civil service now. The law will address all the illegal wealth they had acquired and the ones they are acquiring now. It will no longer be business as usual.”
Akinyelure said the argument by his colleagues that proposed agency would duplicate the duties of the National Orientation Agency, was not correct.
He said, “The argument by some of my colleagues that the bill  would create an agency that would be doing the work of an existing agency like the National Orientation Agency is not correct.
“This is a distinct agency because the president has approved the national ethics and integrity policy in 2020. 
“It is a compendium of ethical values that can change the orientation of Nigerians to do what is right and needful for this country to move forward. 
“The NOA has been in existence for decades and ethical behaviours of people in the workplace is nothing to write home about. 
“The NOA was even part of the agencies that formulated the national policy on ethical values. 
“When a national policy is not backed by law, it is as if nothing has happened because policy is not the law of the land. 
“When there is a national policy approved by the executive arm of government, and the legislative arm also give it a legal backing, 
“As the chairman of the Senate  Committee on Ethics, Privileges and Public Petitions, , I consider it absolutely necessary to come with a policy that will back President Buhari’s agenda of the policy on national ethics and integrity.
“Today, civil servants are doing whatever they like. They’ve forgotten about ethical behaviours in work place. They’ve forgotten about values. 
“Buhari assembled people of integrity to come up with the Federal Republic of Nigeria National Ethics and Integrity Compliance Policy. It must be backed by law.
“There are cases of some workers slapping other Nigerians working under them simply because they are the boss. All these will stop when the bill is passed.”

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