The presidential candidate of the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) in the April 16, 2011 election, Mallam Nuhu Ribadu, is to begin a three-week country governance audit of Afghanistan as part of a six-man international monitoring team set up by the United Nations under the "Afghanistan Anti-Corruption Monitoring and Evaluation Committee".
A statement by Ribadu's media aide, Ibrahim Modibbo, said the ACN presidential candidate left Nigeria for Afghanistan last Tuesday to join five other team members in Dubai who together travelled to Kabul where they were expected to fine tune the strategy of curbing corruption in the troubled country.
While in Afghanistan, the statement said, the committee's duties, according to briefing papers from the Department of Foreign International Development (DFID) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) office, include a review of the social, political, economic and cultural conditions giving life to corruption in the country, which they tag "drivers of corruption."
The group is also expected to make a sustainable proposal on how to curb the crime and moral ill that has ravaged the image and international standing of the conflict-ridden country.
It noted that aside from offering best "approach and principles" of fighting corruption on a legal basis", the monitoring team, according to its mandate, is also expected to propose ways of ensuring that international aid and development financing to Afghanistan meets with the country's "national priorities".
Afghanistan (ranked 176th) is the third most corrupt country, with a CPI (corruption perception index) of 1.4 according to Transparency International (TI), with only Somalia (178) and Myanmar (176) ranked worst. Nigeria is ranked 134 with a CPI of 2.4 among the 178 countries ranked.
According to the statement, members of the committee who were appointed late last year commenced work on April 21 with a teleconference on the task at hand and how to achieve their mission, adding that the monitoring and evaluation is expected to help the Afghanistan government in its fight against corruption and also guide the international community on how best to relate with the country.
It also stated that even though the committee is expected to complete its work in two years, the task would not affect Ribadu's national priorities and his continued commitment to the growth and development of Nigeria.
It stressed that "it is Mr Ribadu's contribution to the global fight against corruption that has gotten him this recognition. This will however not deter him from playing his roles as a responsible citizen and political leader in our country.
"You know, his party, the ACN, controls six states and Mr. Ribadu will do all he can to ensure that the governors of those six states bring the dividends of democracy to their people in order to let Nigerians know that the ACN is the best party to rule the country," it said.
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