In continuation of Nigeria’s commitment to implementing a public register of beneficial owners of corporate entities operating in Nigeria, President Muhammadu Buhari has approved Nigeria’s membership of the beneficial ownership leadership group.
The minister of state for budget and national planning, Prince Clem Ikanade Agba, made this disclosure at the 15th open government partnership national steering committee summit, held in Abuja.
Agba said the approval followed the continuous support of the president for beneficial ownership in Nigeria that includes the signing of the repeal and re-enactment of Companies and Allied Matters Amendment Act (CAMA) 2020 which made clear provision for collection and publication of beneficial ownership information.
He further disclosed that Nigeria was already enjoying benefits from this group, including receiving $400,000 in funding support from the open government partnership (OGP) multi-donor trust managed by the World Bank.
Nigeria’s effort in the implementation of beneficial ownership transparency won the 2021 OGP impact awards for Africa and the Middle East.
Agba declared the summit was his last national steering committee meeting as it was very crucial to the implantation of OGP in Nigeria.
He added that it would also serve as a valedictory/appraisal session for nap ii and a review of the draft of third national action plan.
the minister therefore admonished the incoming co-chairs to correct some, if not all the setbacks encountered in the implementation of nap ii in the third national action plan which would commence in a couple of months.
Also making his remarks at the summit the OGP Chief Operations Officer, Dr. Tayo Adeloju expressed his delight with the president’s approval of the global membership of Nigeria in the open beneficiary leadership forum.
Dr. Adeloju said open beneficiary as a forum imperative pointed to a critical anti-corruption mechanism in dealing with illicit financial funds out of Nigeria.
He described the approval as an opportunity for Nigeria to join a league of nations that can collaborate not just with the open registry in Nigeria but the integration of registries around the world which makes it harder to steal from the country and easier to track among antics that are committed globally to a more open society where public funds and resources are used to meet public values and national interest objectives
He further said the approval also meant Nigeria now has the lead in conversation on Open beneficiary register in terms of delivering a world class register on time and supporting that process in such a way that it accentuates the outcome needed in terms of a more open economy, a more open Government and a more open private sector.