The Executive Secretary of the Nigeria Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI), Mr. Waziri Adio was named winner of the 2018 Anti-Corruption Defender Award by the Wole Soyinka Centre for Investigative Journalism (WSCIJ).
In a letter conveying the award decision, the Centre noted that the award was introduced to recognize and honor Nigerians or organizations with outstanding ethical dimension whose personality and professional engagements incarnate total ramification of integrity in our nation’s life.
“This year, the search committee for the award came up with overwhelming endorsement for your many efforts to promote transparency and accountability, especially in Nigeria’s oil and gas sector, as well as your unstinting commitment to the values of justice”, said WSCIJ.
Commenting on the award via his twitter handle @Waziriadio, Mr. Adio said “I received this esteemed award with deep humility and high honor, and I dedicate it to my colleagues in NEITI, who are doing the heavy lifting in ensuring that our extractive sector is governed more transparently and accountably”.
“I shy away from awards but I am strongly persuaded to accept this because of the exemplary person the organization is named after and its credibility over time. I see this award as important recognition for the work of NEITI, not as a personal recognition”, Adio noted.
Recipients of the anti-corruption defender award in the past years include Mallam Nuhu Ribadu, Chief Gani Fawehinmi, Justice Kayode Eso, Alhaji Balarabe Musa. Others are: Dr Chidi Odinkalu, the Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP), Prof Attahiru Jega, Public Private Development Centre (PPDC) and Dr Obiageli Ezekwesili.
The award presentation event was held on December 9, the World Anticorruption Day, to call public attention to the significance of the media generally and investigative reporting in particular, to attaining good governance, accountability, and social justice.