Buhari talks tough ,announces fresh measures to advance war against corruption

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Buhari talks tough ,announces fresh measures to advance war against corruption.

President Muhammadu Buhari pledged Thursday in London that in
furtherance of his administration’s ongoing war against corruption,
Nigeria will soon begin the full implementation of the principles of the
Open Contracting Data Standard, according a state by Mr. Femi Adesina,
Special Adviser to the President on Media & Publicity.
In Nigeria’s country statement to the Anti-Corruption Summit hosted
by Prime Minister David Cameron of Britain, President Buhari said that
the Federal Government will apply the Open Contracting Data Standard to
major projects in the oil, transportation, power, health, education and
other sectors.
The Open Contracting Data Standard (OCDS) enables disclosure of data
and documents at all stages of the contracting process by defining a
common data model.
The publication of OCDS data ensures greater transparency in public
contracting, and can support accessible and in-depth analysis of the
efficiency, effectiveness, fairness, and integrity of public contracting
systems.
President Buhari said that his administration is also taking steps to
ensure greater transparency of the ownership and control of all
companies involved in property purchase and public contracting.
“Nigeria is already collating this information through the Extractive
Industry Initiative process and will extend it to other sectors.
“Nigeria will establish a transparent central register of foreign
companies bidding on public contracts and buying property. We welcome
the proposal by developed countries to work together to improve the
access of developing countries to beneficial ownership information for
use in public contracting, the President said.
President Buhari also welcomed a proposal to restrict the ability of
those involved in corruption to travel, invest and do business overseas.
“We commit to joining the pilot initiative for automatic exchange of
beneficial information. Nigeria commits to deploying public-private
information sharing partnerships to bring together governments, law
enforcement, regulators and the financial sector to detect, prevent and
disrupt money laundering linked to corruption.
“We commit to work together to enhance company disclosure on the
payments to governments for the sale of oil, gas and minerals,
complementing ongoing work within the EITI.
“Nigeria is already reporting progress through the EITI working
groups and will continue to work with interested countries to build a
common understanding and strengthen the evidence for transparency in
this area.
“We welcome voluntary disclosures
through EITI reporting and by some
major companies regarding payments to governments for the sale of oil,
gas and minerals.
“We welcome the new 2016 EITI Standard, in particular the
requirements on beneficial ownership and the sale of the government’s
share of production. We will sign up to the Common Reporting Standard
initiative.
“We commit to reviewing penalties and other actions against
professional enablers of tax evasion, including for corporations that
fail to prevent their employees from facilitating tax evasion.
“We support the development of a global commitment for public country
by country reporting on tax information for large multinational
enterprises.
“We commit to the strengthening of our asset recovery legislation,
including through non-conviction based confiscation powers and the
introduction of unexplained wealth orders.
“In order to improve on the current legal procedures and ease asset
recovery procedures, we have drafted the Proceeds of Crime Bill which
provides for the transparent management of recovered funds and assets
and a non-conviction based approach to asset recovery.
“We will work with others countries, civil society, international
organisations to support accelerated implementation of the voluntary
provisions of the UN Convention Against Corruption (UNCAC) and we commit
to the implementation of the outstanding obligations under the UNCAC.
“We support the establishment of an International Anti-Corruption
Coordination Centre to be managed by National Crimes Agency of Britain.
We will work with NCA in promoting this centre in the African region,”
the President said.

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