The coalition seeks federal civil service authorities to protect the whistleblower

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The Coalition for Whistleblower Protection and Press Freedom (CWPPF) has asked the Federal Civil Service to protect a whistleblower, Richard Oghenerhoro, who exposed an alleged employment scam at the Federal Ministry of Public Works and Housing in Abuja.

The call came on the heels of alleged disciplinary action taken against Mr. Oghenerhoro for uncovering the bogus employment and making his findings public.

The complainant was found guilty of misconduct, breach of the oath of secrecy, unauthorized disclosure of official information and copying of official documents, in contravention of the provisions of the Public Service Rules, according to the Punch newspaper.

The rule recommended the termination of the appointment or forced retirement for crimes.

“CWPPF has taken on whistleblower victimization cases over the years and we certainly demand that Mr. Oghenehoro be protected, reinstated and appreciated for exposing irregularities and weak employment data systems in the Federal Civil Service instead of focusing on the petition,” the coalition said. statement issued on Thursday read in part.

He said the action taken against Mr. Oghenerhoro contradicted the anti-corruption stance of President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration.

“One would think that a government that puts so much emphasis on fighting corruption would appreciate citizens who are willing to expose wrongdoing and corruption in the public interest,” the statement from 18 coalition members, including Premium Times, read in part. .

The coalition said Oghenerhoro is “one of numerous cases of violations and stigmatization of whistleblowers since the Federal Government introduced the policy in 2016 as a strategy to curb corruption in Nigeria.”

He added: “Whistleblowing is an important tool to combat corruption. Mr. Oghenehoro’s disclosure is timely and important considering the recent report on the exclusion of 70,000 ghost workers from the Federal Civil Service.”

Coalition members include media houses, the Journalists Union of Nigeria (NUJ) and civil society organizations concerned with the fight against corruption and freedom of the press.

Some of them are Premium Times, OrderPaper Advocacy Initiative, The Cable, Daily Trust Newspaper, International Press Institute, Nigeria; Wole Soyinka Center for Investigative Journalism, Center for Journalism Innovation and Development (CJID) and the African Center for Media and Information Literacy (AFRICMIL).

The rest are Civic Media Lab

Civil Society Network Against Corruption (CSNAC) International Center for Investigative Journalism (ICIR), International Press Center (IPC), International Press Institute, Nigeria, Media Rights Agenda (MRA), NUJ, Paradigm Initiative, Project of Socioeconomic Rights and Responsibility (SERP), and HEDA Resource Center.

Read the full coalition statement:

THE COALITION ASKS THE FEDERAL CIVIL SERVICE TO PROTECT THE COMPLAINT

August 11, 2022 The Coalition for Whistleblower Protection and Press Freedom (CWPPF) calls on the Federal Civil Service to protect whistleblower Richard Oghenerhoro.

The CWPPF regards the disciplinary action against the petitioner, Mr. Richard Oghenerhoro, for breach of the oath of secrecy and unauthorized disclosure of official information, as a derisory attempt to stifle freedom of expression and total disregard for the 2016 whistleblower policy .

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This is one of numerous cases of violations and stigmatization of whistleblowers since the Federal Government introduced the policy in 2016 as a strategy to curb corruption in Nigeria.

Whistleblowing is an important tool to combat corruption. Mr. Oghenehoro’s revelation is timely and important considering the recent report on the exclusion of 70,000 ghost workers from the Federal Public Service.

One would think that a government that puts so much emphasis on fighting corruption would appreciate citizens who are willing to expose wrongdoing and corruption in the public interest.

CWPPF has taken on whistleblower victimization cases over the years and we certainly demand that Mr. Oghenehoro be protected, reinstated and appreciated for exposing irregularities and weak employment data systems in the Federal Civil Service instead of focusing on petition .

CWPPF condemns the disciplinary actions against Mr. Oghenehoro and calls for the immediate withdrawal of the punitive actions. This would boost the confidence of citizens to report irregularities that endanger the country.

We will continue to oppose all forms of attacks on human rights and press freedom in Nigeria and around the world and will hold government, individuals and organizations to account.

We will continue to take the necessary steps to prevent violence against journalists and media workers and we will also fiercely demand accountability and bring perpetrators of crimes against journalists and media workers to justice.

CWPPF Secretariat

The Coalition for Whistleblower Protection and Press Freedom (CWPPF) is a group of media and civil society organizations committed to upholding democracy and good governance by protecting the ethics of whistleblowing, freedom of expression and freedom of the press.

CWPPF members

Premium Times

OrderPaper Defense Initiative

The wire

Trusted daily newspaper

International Press Institute, Nigeria

Wole Soyinka Center for Investigative Journalism

Center for Journalistic Innovation and Development (CJID)

African Center for Media and Information Literacy (AFRICMIL)

Civic Media Lab

Civil Society Network Against Corruption (CSNAC)

International Center for Investigative Reporting (ICIR)

International Press Center (IPC)

International Press Institute, Nigeria

Media Rights Agenda (MRA)

Journalists Union of Nigeria (NUJ)

Paradigm Initiative

Socioeconomic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP)

HEDA Resource Center.

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