Commissioner for Economic Planning and Budgeting in Anambra State, Mr. Mark Okoye, has called for the strengthening of institutions to reduce the exposure of public officers to corruption.
Okoye made the call during the presentation of a corruption risk assessment in three ministries, department and agencies by the UN Development Programme, UNDP, in Awka yesterday.
He said weak institutional systems in governance had encouraged corrupt practices which had hampered development in most states.
The commissioner lauded the UNDP for the painstaking report on the assessment and promised to mainstream the findings and recommendations in the 2017 budget framework.
“Corruption is a major factor militating against service delivery in the public sector and that is why most states are in distress.
“So, it is my opinion that we build a corruption-free system, corruption-free institution and corruption-proof public sector.
“The areas covered in your report which include education, water and health are vital for development and I thank the UNDP; our call is that you finish the process and make them available so that we can mainstream them in the next budget,” he said.
Speaking on the scope of the report, Programme Manager of UNDP in the state, Dr Nneka Onwudiwe, said the assessment report covered the period between 2014 and 2016.
Onwudiwe said the study was aimed at plugging the loopholes in the public sector and proffering ways to strengthen institutions and systems.
She said some of the findings were that the public service system was highly exposed to corruption.
The programme manger said it recommended the setting up of anti-corruption units in the MDAs to mitigate and prevent corruption.