The Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, on Tuesday, honoured the Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu, with a special title of “Anti-Corruption Ambassador” based on his support for the fight against graft.The National Assembly Liason Officer, of the EFCC, Mr. Suleiman Bakari, according to a statement by the Special Adviser to the Deputy Senate President, Uche Anichukwu, stated this when he led a team of the anti-graft agency on a courtesy visit to Ekweremadu.
Bakari said, “As an Anti-Corruption Ambassador, It is therefore Your Excellency, to on behalf of my Acting chairman, Mr. Ibrahim Mustafa Magu and the entire management and staff of the EFCC, decorate you as an Anti-Corruption Ambassador and formally present this frame, as a token of our appreciation to your person and office, and as a symbol of institutional partnership between the EFCC and the National Assembly.
Bakari, appealed to the National Assembly to ensure adequate funding for the agency and advocated speedy passage of all the anti-corruption Bills before it.
Ekweremadu called for the establishment of Special Anti-Corruption Courts to reduce the burden on regular courts and fast-track trial of corruption cases.
He explained that setting up Special Courts, was one of the surest ways to help the fight against corruption, as it would ensure speedy adjudication of corruption cases.
He said, “I have been an advocate of special courts for the trial of corruption cases and I believe that other countries, who have enacted laws establishing such, are not fools because there are benefits to be derived therefrom.
“The idea is to expedite trial to make sure that those who are involved in corruption matters will have their day in court.
“When we have special courts, just as we have the National Industrial Court, such courts will do better than they are doing now. The establishment of special courts is not just something that will be done by an Act of the National Assembly.
“We have to amend the constitution to bring it about under section 6, for the purpose of trying corruption cases.”
Ekweremadu advocated value reorientation of Nigerians at all levels, with a view to returning to the good old days, and also cautioned the EFCC to ensure that in fighting corruption, it must respect the rule of law and ensure that the provisions of the constitution regarding fair hearing and treatment of an accused are also respected.
He commended the EFCC for decorating him as an Anti-Corruption Ambassador, and assured them that he would live up to the trust reposed in him.
He further said that the National Assembly would do everything within its powers to ensure that the Bills before it, aimed at strengthening the fight against corruption, got speedy attention.
SOURCE: THE PUNCH NEWSPAPER