By Amos Tauna
Nigeria says it will protect and reward whistle-blowers who provide information that leads to the recovery of stolen funds or assets, the Country’s Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, has reiterated.
In a statement in Lagos on Sunday, Special Adviser to the Minister, Segun Adeyemi, said Government would protect the identity of all whistle-blowers, whether in the public or the private sector, and ensure that the information they provide was kept secret.
”For those who may have suffered any backlash as a result of the information they provide, their cases will be reviewed and appropriate mitigating actions taken,” he said.
Mohammed said the assurance followed the presentations made to the Presidential Assets Recovery Committee by concerned citizens and groups about the safety of whistle-blowers.
”Whistle-blowers have nothing to fear, because the committee has put in place the necessary measures to safeguard those who give useful information. As a matter of fact, whistle-blowers have everything to
gain and nothing to lose,” he said.
The Minister said any whistle-blower whose information leads to the recovery of up to 1 billion Naira would receive 5 per cent of the amount, adding that the reward for any amount between 1 and 5 billion Naira would be 5 per cent for the first 1 billion Naira and 4 per cent of the remaining 4 billion Naira, while any amount over 5 billion Naira will attract 2.5 per cent reward.
”For example, if a whistle-blower provides information leading to the recovery of 10 billion Naira, he or she will receive 5% of the first 1 billion Naira, 4% of the next 4 billion Naira and 2.5% of the remaining 5 billion Naira.
”What we have done by making this information public is to reassure potential whistle-blowers that the plan to reward is real. We are not just saying we will pay all whistle-blowers, but we are letting them
know in advance what they are entitled to, once the information they provide leads to the recovery of looted funds,” he explained.
By Amos Tauna