Vice President Yemi Osinbajo on Tuesday urged the global community to adopt concerted efforts against corruption, saying it was a major impediment to development.

He made the call at plenary session of the 3rd United Nations Conference on Financing for Development holding in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.Prof.-Yemi-Osinbajo

In a news release issued in Abuja by Laolu Akande, his Senior Special Assistant on media and publicity, Osinbajo said the VP emphasised the imperative for the international community to help Africa stop and track illicit financial flows. It said the VP called for support to Africa in repatriating such stolen funds.

“This conference must come up with a mechanism for dismantling safe havens and the return of stolen funds and assets to the countries of origin as mandated in the UN Conventions Against Corruption and Transnational Organised Crime.”

It quoted Osinbajo as saying Nigeria welcomed the report of the African Union High-level panel on illicit financial flow from Africa and called on the international community to assist Africa “stop, track and repatriate illicit funds.”

The release called for the establishment of a Global Fund for Educational Development (GFED), on the same scale as the UN Global Fund to Fight AIDS and other major diseases.

It said such fund should support universal free and quality primary education especially in developing countries.

This, according to the release, will “make a difference in our world in the next 15 years.

“It should replicate the successes registered by the Global Fund to Fight HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria.”

It added that Osinbajo had earlier called on global leaders to pay attention to plight of the world’s poor, arguing that promotion of social inclusion was central to development.

“The Vice President recalled that during the last global financial crisis, nations and governments worked out a bail out that took care of the situation.

“If we can bail out the rich, why not bail out the poor who have neither voice nor representation?

“He urged the global leaders gathered at the conference” to develop and implement unconventional social safety nets to address the scourge of poverty, hunger, disease and misery” in poor nations.

“He said President Muhammadu Buhari administration is committed to set appropriate spending targets on social services to address poverty, hunger, inequality and unemployment particularly among the youths.”

On terrorism and insurgency, he asked the international community to develop a viable mechanism to deal with the scourges for a truly sustainable development.

According to him, the phenomenon of global terrorism constitutes a potent threat to peace, stability and economic development of countries.

The threat, he emphasized, called for adequate funding, partnership and collaboration of the global community to combat terrorism, extremism and insurgency.

“We must take parallel action to intensify efforts towards blocking all sources of funding for terrorist activities,” he added.

In furtherance of the anti-corruption policy of the Buhari presidency, Osinbajo also charged the international community to develop appropriate mechanism to dismantle safe havens and ensure repatriation of stolen funds and assets to the countries of origin as mandated in the UN Conventions Against Corruption and Transnational Organized Crime.

Earlier, the UN Secretary-General, Ban Ki-Moon said the adoption of the Addis Ababa Action Agenda would be a critical step towards sustainable development and the beginning of a new era of cooperation and global partnership.

He noted that the Action Agenda, as an ambitious financing framework, had the capacity to put the world on the right path to implement the post-2015 development agenda and the sustainable development goals.

NAN reports that the four day conference (July 13 to July16), attracted high level representatives of Heads of State and Governments, business moguls, international donor agencies, multi-lateral organisations and NGOs.

The conference is expected to devise means of mobilizing funds for Africa’s development and provide input for the post-2015 development agenda of the UN.

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