The Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) has began moves to grant the Code of Conduct Bureau (CCB) access to its database to probe fraudulent companies.
The Registrar-General (RG) of the CAC, Alhaji Garba Abubakar made this known when the CCB Chairman, Prof. Muhammad Isah visited him at the Commission’s headquarters in Abuja.
Abubakar said the time was ripe for the commission to explore more areas of collaboration particularly in real-time.
He stressed that in view of CAC’s strategic collaboration with other anti-corruption agencies like the EFCC, ICPC and INTERPOL, the commission had established a dedicated unit to expeditiously handle requests for information and other services.
The RG added that any member of the public could conduct what he called a first level check on the status of any company on the CAC Website, through the Public Search window at no cost.
While speaking on the introduction of Beneficial Ownership Disclosure or Person with Significant Control, Abubakar revealed that the disclosure would soon be extended to open data format.
He noted that it would enable investigators extract information on any company as well as query the database to detect whether a particular name had featured in different companies.
Abubakar also revealed that the commission was working assiduously for integration with the National Identity Management Commission’s database to enable it validate the identity of anyone applying to register a company.
He added that it would eliminate incidences of submitting cloned copies of means of identification to the CAC.
The CAC boss, therefore, reiterated his commitment to ensure continued synergy and collaboration with the CCB and other Anti-Corruption bodies in a bid to strengthen the anti-money laundering and anti-corruption initiatives of the Federal Government.
Earlier, Isa expressed satisfaction with the support and cooperation the CCB had received from the Registrar General since his assumption of Office.
Isa, who said the CAC and CCB had a lot to do in order to enhance the economic well-being of the country, further noted that Abubakar had ensured expeditious and effective treatment of all requests from the CCB.
The CCB Chairman said in view of emerging trends in Company Law, there was need for more robust collaboration between the two agencies to unravel the identities of those perpetrating various economic crimes in the country.
While speaking on the mandate of the CCB which was established under Section 153 of the 1999 Constitution, Isa said it was equally empowered to enforce Code of Conduct for Public Officers.
He stressed that the CCB was among others, empowered to enforce asset declaration as one of the 14 Code of Conduct for Public Officers.
He added that Conflict of Interest; Bribery, Abuse of Office, Double Remuneration, Operation of Foreign Accounts and Membership of Secret Society amongst others were all under their purview.
Isa described Asset Declaration as the life wire of corruption fight to all Anti-Corruption Agencies and therefore, charged Public Officers to declare their assets accordingly, stressing that the measure would also protect their interest.