The Independent Corrupt Practices and other related offences Commission has concluded arrangement to prosecute two lecturers allegedly involved in rape cases.
The Dean of the Faculty of Law, University of Calabar, Prof. Cyril Ndifon, was accused of sexually assaulting a 20-year-old Law student in the institution, while a lecturer at the University of Lagos, Dr. Akin Baruwa, allegedly raped a young lady seeking admission to University.
The Chairman of the ICPC, Mr. Ekpo Nta, stated this in Abuja, at a colloquiem entitled “Accountability and Integrity as pillars of National Development.”
The event was in honour of a legal practitioner, Mr. Adegboyega Awolowo (SAN).
At the event, the Chairman, National Human Rights Commission, Prof. Anselm Odinkalu, urged President Muhammadu Buhari, “to go beyond just his body language to provide responsible leadership in governance.”
According to the ICPC boss, the two lecturers will be tried on charges of alleged abuse of office.
“The ICPC is getting involved in the cases on the basis of abuse of office, because they would not have had access to those (girls), if not for their positions,” Nta stated.
Meanwhile, the ICPC boss said the commission had not made any “deliberate recovery of assets between 2000 and 2010.”
“When I got into office, I found out that from 2000 to 2010, we had not done any deliberate recovery of assets.
“A total of 26 illegal degree-awarding institutions, have been shut by the ICPC, in its determined effort to sanitise the nation’s tertiary education system.”
Odinkalu berated the Federal Government’s anti-corruption crusade methodology, saying the way the accused were being treated fell short of constitutional requirements.
He specifically asked the government to accord dignity to suspected treasury looters, because they were still mere suspects.
The NHRC boss said the government must realise that “what comes around goes around.”
Odinkalu decried what he called the “undignified treatment” being meted on suspected treasury looters by the current administration without recourse to the rule of law. According to him, the approach fell short of modern fight against graft.
He regretted that Nigeria was a country where people with integrity were few, adding that some people who failed to sincerely advise ex-President Goodluck Jonathan, were the ones beginning to surround his successor.
“How many people were sincerely giving Jonathan the good advice needed? The same characters that surrounded Jonathan have started surrounding the present administration,” Odinkalu said.
According to him, Nigeria, as presently constituted, needs leaders that could speak and connect with the citizenry.
He wondered why Buhari would choose to make his action plans known to foreign audience, rather than speaking to Nigerians.
The NHRC chairman was referring to the President’s earlier visit to Ghana, where he announced that he would constitute his cabinet before the end of September, as well as the disclosure in Paris, France, that the Federal Government was negotiating with Boko Haram to secure the release of the abducted Chibok girls.
“You can’t lead a country by body language. We need a leadership that will trust our people and speak to our people. You have got to speak to your people,” he said.
Odinkalu said Nigeria had yet to get the expected change, adding that Buhari was ruling people by what he called “body language” which, he noted, fell short of democratic governance.
He also regretted that the President was leaving Nigeria in darkness, preferring rather to make policy statements from outside the country each time he travelled out, saying such action was not in line with democratic norms.