Forum Warns CSOs against Extortion

Civil Society Organizations engaging in extortion of public and private officials and institutions have been warned to desist from such activities henceforth.

The National Anti-Corruption and Security Forum made the call on Friday the 19th of January, 2024 in Abuja the nation’s capital.

In a statement by its Spokesperson Dr. John Adewale Adekunle, the Forum said “Our attention has been drawn to the criminal activities of some civil society organizations and groups which have been heckling the Service Chiefs, Permanent Secretaries, National Assembly Service Commission, Federal Inland Revenue Service and Some Private Organizations. They claim to rely on the Freedom of Information Act (2011) in the bid to enhance the renewed hope agenda of Government, and request the agencies to furnish them with details of their income and expenditure, and other information.”

Dr Adekunle maintained that “ Prominent amongst these CSOs are the National Transparency and Accountability Network Project, International Centre for Accountability, Equity and Justice, National Accountability Ambassadors of Nigeria, Advocacy for Good Ethics and Accountability, Development Network for Good Governance and others which pose as anti-corruption watchdogs, and threaten to exploit both the mainstream and social media space to ventilate their mendacious blackmail with ulterior motives of being paid to be silent. For all intents and purposes such activities are criminal and subversive, and constitute serious threats to National Security.”

He finally called on the General Public to “disregard the spurious allegations from such Civil Society Organizations, as plans are being concluded to work with the Armed Forces, Security Agencies, Intelligence Community and relevant agencies to investigate the records of the Trustees and Associates of these groups for immediate crackdown. The laws and instruments of the Federal Republic of Nigeria shall be fully deployed to track these self-styled ‘corruption fighters’ and those internal staff of Ministries, Departments and Agencies of Government who connive with them. Blackmail and fake news are subversive activities and must not be allowed to thrive in Nigeria.”

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