A public affairs analyst Mr. Chukwuemeka Eze, has called on government to professionalise “Whistle Blowing”.
This is coming just as the federal government has approved a whistle blowing policy for the National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP) to help the agency in its fight against human trafficking in Nigeria.
Speaking as a guest on the programme Today on STV he said, Eze said that professionalizing whistleblowing will be saving the society in a very great way.
He said that if the government had this kind of policy, people would have been speaking out and the roads that were not constructed would have been constructed.
“Most roads have had their contracts given in the past but was not constructed.”
He stated further that the private sector cannot be totally immune from the whistle blowing policy because if a company is PLC, it means the public interest is there. So any company that the public interest is involved there should be a whistle blowing policy.
He said the private sector is not mutually exclusive from the public sector; but the public sector should be sanitized first so that there will be that confidence that when you come to the private sector you are not using it to kill some companies.
He also said many companies do not remit their taxes; they deduct taxes but don’t remit them. Many times, banks collect money on behalf of organizations, both private and public, and they refuse to remit.
He said further that even these banks are privately owned, so far they have allowed themselves to be used to withhold public money, they should come within the purview of whistle blowing policy.
He said government should live by example and start whistle blowing with people at the top; like permanent secretaries and ministers because they are not saints.
He also stressed on the fact that, it will be difficult for us to completely do away with corruption because 90% of Nigerians live above their means.
Giving an example, he said when you pay somebody N18, 000 naira, and he has four children and they all attend private school. This is why the fight against corruption is dead on arrival.
He said Nigerians should have a duty to report crimes and there should be a level of morality in whistle blowing policy and whistle blowing should not be situated on money alone.
He also attributed the cost of doing election in Nigeria to attain a public office, as one major factor why corruption continues.
He concluded saying that the fight against corruption will continue to be an issue of propaganda and no amount of reform will work until we have people who live by example and practice what they say.
Meanwhile the Head, Press and Public Relations of NAPTIP, Josiah Emerole said the approval of whistleblowing policy was conveyed to NAPTIP’s Director-General, Ms Julie Okah-Fonli, by the Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami.