The Association of Professional Bodies of Nigeria (APBN) has tasked its members on the need to abide by professional ethics and code while carrying out their duties.
The President of APBN, Mr. Akinloye Oyegbola, made this known when spoke in Abuja during the 11th annual summit of the association.
He said: “APBN as the umbrella association for all professions in the country has the undisputable responsibility to continue to intensify its effort on advocacy and enlightenment. This is borne from the conviction that it is the professionals of any country that would develop it.”
The APBN president said the summit provides avenue for her 30-member body to come together with a view to brainstorming on issues of concern to the nation and proffering appropriate and enduring solutions to them.
According to him, “It is common knowledge that the world is going through trying times. Just as the slow socio-economic recovery after the Covic-19 pandemic was gathering momentum came the Russian invasion of Ukraine which has preoccupied the developed countries. As lives were being lost daily, the attention of the developed countries has been shifted to trying to contain the invasion and its far-reaching implications.
“It is as if our nation’s share of this was not enough, we have high level of inflation and insecurity to contend with on a daily basis.”
Other speakers at the summit charged professionals to display personal and professional integrity in the line of duty.
A former president of APBN, Mr. Segun Ajanlekoko, in his presentation, said government procurement involves a high risk of corruption because of the huge size of financial turnover and the complexity of many procurement processes in which businesses interact very closely with politicians and civil servants.
He however said professionals working procuring entities and other government officials involved in the public procurement process, must display personal and professional integrity.
He said: “Everyone associated with the public procurement process or directly responsible for facilitating the acquisition of goods and services with public funds should strive to avoid fraud, waste and abuse of public resources, whether it is the result of over specification of required goods, paying unreasonably high prices for substandard goods, collusion with other bidders or other forms of unacceptable practices.”
In his presentation, Prof. Muhammad Kabiru Dallatu of the Association of Medical Laboratory Scientists of Nigeria (AMLSN) said professional corruption and misconduct destroyed nations and inflict suffering on the populace.
“Is there need to continue having sleepless nights, psychological traumas and needless prayers and visit to holy places, looking for deliverance on such deliberate actions/inactions of ours?
“Such actions of ours turn other people’s lives of happiness to sorrow, tranquility to devastation, from joyful life to terrible experiences and on the extreme, from an enjoyable life to horrible consequences of untimely death or painful life with morbidities.
“Professional misconduct is therefore disastrous, catastrophic and destructive. With or without any legislation discouraging it, it should be avoided by any right thinking professional.
“Professional bodies therefore, should design an internal mechanism for one to one approach of discouraging corruption and professional misconduct among members,” Dallatu said.
Earlier in a keynote address, the Chairman, Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC), Prof. Bolaji Owasanoye, urged professional bodies in Nigeria to develop a code of ethics and enforce the code by punishing members who violate such ethics.
According to him, if Nigeria is to achieve its dream of a sustainable economic growth as a nation, integrity should be the cornerstone of every professional practice and professional bodies.
He lamented that one cannot deny the fact that many professionals in Nigeria face an ethical dilemma because the environment is characterised by endemic corruption that makes almost everybody vulnerable to corruption and money laundering.
Owasanoye explained that if the business climate is good on integrity and the professional side is strong on ethics, investors are often willing to take the risk.
Culled from THISDAY