President Muhammadu Buhari is to domicile the whistleblowing policy in the Public Complaints Commission (PCC). The President said that the Commission was the best agency to host the policy, while responding to requests by the Chief Commissioner of the Commission, Abimbola Ayo-Yusuf and members of the management team, during a courtesy visit to him at the Presidential Villa yesterday. Buhari also thanked the Commission for conferring the award of the Grand Ombudsman of the Federal Republic of Nigeria on him and pledged to continue to do his best in expanding the frontiers of anti-corruption, rule of law and good governance in Nigeria.
He said “I want to assure you that the Commission would be considered as the Agency, where the policy will be domiciled given your widespread network of offices and the fact that your mandate on referral of complaints with criminal contents to appropriate Law Enforcement Agencies make your Commission the best suited Agency for domiciling whistleblowing policy of the Federal Government.’’
He also promised speedy consideration of the Commission’s application to own a radio station to facilitate dissemination of its activities to the citizenry and to enhance its public enlightenment programmes. On the 2023 elections and the need to protect the will of Nigerians, Buhari urged the Commission to use its privileged position and network of numerous offices in all the States of the Federation and presence in many Local Government Areas to protect the interest of the down- trodden and sensitise the citizenry on their rights and obligations.
He underscored the role of the Commission in ensuring free, fair and credible elections and a smooth democratic transition and transfer of power in 2023. ‘‘The Public Complaints Commission is an Ombudsman Institution set up in 1975. The reason for its establishment by its founding fathers was to bridge the gap between the government and the governed and between the big man and the little man. ‘‘It was designed to act as a bastion of justice for the ‘little man’ who has no one or place to turn to for relief, just as it was conceived by the Swedes who originated it.’’ Ayo-Yusuf praised President Buhari for releasing all outstanding pension liabilities, from 2014, to retirees of the Federal Government, especially those of the treasury- funded Ministries, Department and Agencies (MDAs), under the contributory pension scheme.