Thursday, 24 May 2012

Unscrupulous Professionals Aid Fraudsters - LAMORDE

The Executive Chairman of Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Mr. Ibrahim Lamorde has decried the high rate of connivance of professionals with fraudsters in committing economic crimes in the country. According to him, professionals are always linked to most technical issues involved in many economic crimes the EFCC is investigating. “Most of the corrupt cases we encounter are aided by one professional or another.  In money laundering for example, bankers and accountants are involved, in estate and property- related crimes, quantity surveyors are also involved,” he said.
Lamorde made this observation while receiving a delegation of Association of Professional Bodies of Nigeria (APBN) led its President,  Segun Ajanlekoko on Wednesday May 23rd , 2012 at the Headquarters of the Commission in Abuja . The EFCC helmsman urged the Association to identify bad eggs in its fold and sanction such people, stressing that it was not in all cases that people steal raw cash but in some instances rely on professionals to doctor documents that will aid them in perpetrating corrupt acts.

He however reassures the Association of the Commission’s willingness to collaborate with it especially on some of its investigation work that requires professional inputs from any affiliate members of APBN.  Lamorde urged Nigerians to resist the temptation of adopting what he called an ‘I don’t care attitude’ whereby they feel corruption is either the fight of anti-graft agencies or is too big a problem to be tackled by an individual. 
In his speech, President of APBN,  Segun Ajanlekoko congratulated  Lamorde on his confirmation as the Chairman of EFCC, and disclosed the visit was an opportunity to stimulate thoughts on issue of mutual interest and professional values towards national development.  He explained that the eradication of corruption as a key component of the government transformation agenda was a task not only for government and its agencies, but for all Nigerians. “The crusade should not be limited to stolen monies but to other corruptive practices.  It should equally cover policies which are endemic and even more dangerous,” he said.
The Association which is made up of twenty-six (26) professional bodies that are chartered and recognized by  Acts of Parliament ,according to its President, was determined to help EFCC in its fight against corruption even as it was concerned that more professionals are being sidelined from using their skills and expertise for nation building. 
He called on management of EFCC to avail its staff of several up-coming management trainings and to support the APBN Foundation which is aimed at promoting best practices, good corporate governance and capacity building among corporate and educational entities.
Ajanlekoko was accompanied on the visit by  Arc. Ramatu Aliyu, Chairman, Abuja Chapter; Mrs Beatrice Oji, Treasurer, Abuja Chapter and Adebayo B.A., National Secretary among others.

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