Senate to launch Transparency Commission

Edwin Akwueh, Abuja

Nigeria’s Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki

Nigeria’s Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki has announced intention to inaugurate an independent ‘Transparency and Delivery Commission’ to review and improve the oversight systems and tools of the Senate.

This is in line with the legislative agenda approved by the Senate.

The Commission will be led by a working group consisting of a world leading research institution and a partner institute in Nigeria and will be advised by an internationally acclaimed anti-corruption expert.

The independent Commission will work closely with the Senate and the Senate Committee on Anti-Corruption & Financial Crimes to draw up a robust oversight scheme.

This is to strengthen the internal structuring and capacity of the National Assembly to fulfil its role as an anti-corruption institution.

Dual agenda
The Commission’s work will be two-fold; initially it will concentrate on analysing the processes and tools by which the Senate and the National Assembly in general can, using its legislative remit, assist the anti-corruption agenda of President Buhari and more specifically strengthen the institutions through legislative reforms.

The following medium-term goal is to then deliver recommendations for better ways of working within the Senate and to ensure that it meets the highest global standards including the newly announced Commonwealth Secretariat anti-corruption ‘kitemark’ system.

Specifically, the group will:

  1. Map out how the Senate could use its oversight tools to act as a catalyst for greater transparency and anti-corruption in both the Federal and State levels.
  1. Assess how the Nigerian Senate functions as a scrutiny and policy making body and how it can improve in this role.
  1. Undertake a review of the mechanisms of the Nigerian Senate and identify areas for improvement in Senate efficiency in implementing its legislative agenda and its anti-corruption capacity.
  1. Look at international and regional examples of best practice, such as the Commonwealth Secretariat ‘kitemark’ and suggest tangible reforms the Nigeria Senate could implement to improve transparency and the policy delivery process internally and across government.