The Code of Conduct Bureau(CCB) has given the acting Chairman of INEC, Hajiya Amina Zakari, up till August 20 to compel the remaining 860 of the 1,326 Independent National Electoral Commission(INEC) workforce who have failed to declare their assets before or after the March general elections.
The defaulting INEC staffs have been mandated to fill their Asset Declaration Forms(ADFs) before the given deadline or risk being sanctioned.
It was gathered that some INEC staff had “cleverly” amassed wealth and assets in the countdown to the general elections and during the polls.
Besides, allegations of compromise in Anambra State, the Department of State Security Service(DSS) is probing alleged N2.5 billion bribery scam in Akwa Ibom State INEC’s office.
A submission was also made at an election tribunal in Abuja on Thursday that about N5 million was paid into the account of a Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC).
A Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC) was said to have just completed a N1 billion hotel in a Southsouth state.
Based on intelligence reports, the CCB directed INEC officials to declare their assets.
But, of the 1,326 workers, only 466 INEC have complied with the directive of the Bureau, culminating in the August 20 deadline.
The bureau conveyed its deadline in an August 3rd letter to the acting INEC chairman by a Deputy Director (DFPS), J.O.
“The Fifth Schedule, Part 1 paragraph 11 to the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended) make it mandatory for all public officers to declare their assets.
“It has been observed that from our records that the Asset Declaration Forms(ADFs) issued to your organisation on 11th March to be distributed to your staff were not returned as only 466 out of 1,326 Forms were duly filled and returned.
“Failure to declare and return duly completed Assets Declaration by members of staff before 20th August , 2015 shall attract appropriate sanctions. Take urgent action.”
In a memo to all directors of INEC, dated August 4, the Director of Human Resources Management, Musa Adamu asked the officials of the electoral agency to declare their assets or face sanctions.
The memo said: “Sequel to the issuance of Asset Declaration Forms to all staff of the commission in March 2015 and pursuant to the provisions of the Fifth Schedule part 1 of Paragraph 11 of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria(as amended), which makes it mandatory for all public officers to declare their assets, notice is hereby given to all staff who have not completed and submitted their forms to do so on or before 20th August,.2015.
The memo said failure to comply with the CCB directive “shall attract appropriate sanctions from the Code of Conduct Bureau and the commission.
“You are requested to bring the content of this circular to the notice of the affected officers in your department/ directorate.”
After the declaration, the constitution empowers the Bureau to take the following steps.
They are: “Examine the declarations in accordance with the requirements of the Code of Conduct or any law.
“Retain custody of such declarations and make them available for inspection by any citizen of Nigeria on such terms and conditions as the National Assembly may prescribe.
“Ensure compliance with and, where appropriate, enforce the provisions of the Code of Conduct or any law relating thereto.
“Any statement in such declaration that is found to be false by any authority or person authorized in that behalf to verify it shall be deemed to be a breach of this Code.
“Any property or assets acquired by a public officer after any declaration required under this Constitution and which is not fairly attributable to income, gift, or loan approved by this Code shall be deemed to have been acquired in breach of this Code unless the contrary is proved.”
“Receive complaints about non-compliance with or breach of the Provisions of the Code of Conduct or any law in relation thereto. Investigate the complaint and, where appropriate, refer such matters to the Code of Conduct Tribunal.”