Abuja; Tuesday, 14 April 2015: Right To Know (R2K), Nigeria commends Nigeria’s President-elect, General Muhammadu Buhari on his recent statement on Sahara TV aired on Sunday 12 April, 2015, in which he stated that he would ensure all governors, ministers, permanent secretaries, head of foreign staff and political appointees declare their assets on assumption and at the end of their term in order to ensure accountability in the public service.
R2K urges General Buhari to prevail upon the Code of Conduct Bureau to fulfil their constitutional mandate by making public access to all declarations of assets by public officials, so as to ensure that citizens can exercise their constitutional right to verify such declarations.
The 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and the Code of Conduct Bureau and Tribunal Act (Cap C15 LFN 2004) makes it mandatory for public officials, both elected and appointed, to declare their assets and those of their spouses and dependent minors, and to deposit same with the Code of Conduct Bureau.
Specifically, Paragraph 3, Part 1 of the 3rd Schedule to the 1999 Constitution and Paragraph 11, Part 1 of the 5th Schedule to the same Constitution requires the Code of Conduct Bureau to collect, verify and make available to the public the duly filled assets declaration forms of these public office holders.
Ene Nwankpa, R2K Coordinator stated that “ this call for public access to the asset declaration forms of public officials ties with R2K’s continuous campaign on ensuring public access to government held records and information, as citizens access will allow for public scrutiny and verification of assets declared by government officials, in order to ensure that they cannot falsify before and wrongfully enrich their pockets after their terms in office thereby promoting accountability and transparency in government”.
So far, under the outgoing administration of President Goodluck Jonathan, only three public servants have publicly declared the contents of their asset declaration forms. Dr Chidi Anselm Odinkalu, Chairman National Human Rights Commission (NHRC), declared and made public his assets on the R2K website (www.r2knigeria.org), Dr Kayode John Fayemi, former Governor of Ekiti state and his deputy, late Mrs Olayinka O. Adunni both declared and made public their assets on the Ekiti state official website (www.ekitistate.gov.ng).
R2K further encourages incoming public officials to proactively make public their asset declaration forms, as a declaration of a promise of faithful stewardship and a legitimate responsibility of an accountable government.
To view copies of Dr Chidi Odinkalu, Dr Kayode Fayemi and late Mrs Olayinka Adunni’s asset declaration, click here