The Lagos State Lands Bureau and the Independent Corrupt Practices and other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) have expressed willingness to collaborate on identified areas of mutual interest to promote transparency.
The Permanent Secretary, Lagos State Lands Bureau, Mr. Olabode Agoro, made this known during a courtesy call by an ICPC delegation to his office at the Secretariat, Alausa, adding that the Bureau has made transparency and accountability core principles in its services.
Agoro stated that the open government initiatives of the present administration offer the State’s public sector the liberty to uphold transparency, thereby, ensuring public officials operate within the confines of laws and regulations.
He maintained that land administration in Lagos has witnessed outstanding reforms with the deployment of technology and artificial intelligence that has greatly advanced the operations of the Bureau.
The Permanent Secretary also promised to create an environment that will strengthen the collective efforts of both public institutions and provide the necessary support when the need arises.
While applauding the commitment of the Commission to stemming the tide of corruption in the country, the Permanent Secretary confirmed that part of the strategic partnership with the Commission would be the establishment of a Desk Office within the Bureau to facilitate concurrent operations.
Earlier, the Resident Anti-Corruption Commissioner and leader of the ICPC delegation to the Bureau, Mr. Kabir Elelu, said that the visit was aimed at enhancing the existing relationship between the two institutions, especially on cognate areas of interest for seamless and effective information sharing.
He said: “Having an effective and transparent land administration system is essential in the fight against corruption. As an institution responsible for registering title documents, issuing certificates of occupancy, land regularisation and other land-related matters, it is important we strengthen our partnership with you”.
Citing the relevant role the Bureau plays in the fight against corruption, the Resident Commissioner explained that matters such as investigation of ownership of property and verification of the genuineness of title documents require the cooperation and transparency of the Bureau.
Elelu opined that the major deficiency in the administration of justice is the lack of open and coordinated efforts by public institutions, urging the Bureau to always ensure prompt response to enquiries.
“Corruption does not occur in a vacuum, it is a feature of a complex ecosystem of incentives and opportunities. By challenging that ecosystem, anti-corruption bodies like ours will be able to improve outcomes”, he stated.
He commended the Lagos State Government for its accountability drive, particularly on the recent establishment of a Public Complaints and Anti-Corruption Commission, and encouraged the Bureau to continue to make transparency her watchword.