By Dupe Olaoye-Osinkolu
The Association of Nigeria Theatre-Arts Practitioners has embarked on a self-cleansing mission by creating an anti-graft Committee empowered to act on any suspected financial misconduct in the Association.
The foremost performing artistes association also entrenched Iwure Day, a yearly prayer and thanksgiving event to be held at the beginning of every year towards blessing members and the leadership in their activities throughout the year.
Dr Rasak Baroka Oyadiran is the President of the Association.
The well-attended 2024 Iwure Day was held at Ososa, Ogun State, as a mark of honour for the late doyen of theatre arts, Chief Hubert Ogunde.
The Gbegande of Ososa Ijebu, Oba Adetoye Alatise, was happy to receive the ANTP. He blessed the Association and its members even as he said he would be looking forward to the yearly ANTP Iwure Day.
The Iwure Day had the Chairman, Board of Trustees, Chief Lere Paimo, former BOT Chairman, Chief Yemi Farounbi, and many elders of the Association, including Elder Oyewole Olowomojuore (Baba Gebu) in attendance.
Prayers were offered by traditional, Christian, and Islamic religion leaders.
At the general meeting held immediately after the prayers and thanksgiving, ANTP President informed members about the Association’s prepared 2024 calendar of activities.
He also condemned the regular practice of keeping the Association’s funds in individual accounts.
Towards curbing this, he mandated all branches and state chapters to open official bank accounts and gave them a deadline of April 11, 2023, to do so.
Dr.Oyadiran introduced the newly created ANTP anti-graft committee.
The prospective financial crime factfinder was named ANTP National Anti Fraud Committee (NAFCOM). Its terms of reference include free access to the bank accounts history of all branches and chapters of the Association. The National President, Dr. Oyadiran said the NAFCOM can also investigate the accounts of the ANTP at the national level if the need arises.
Members are therefore urged to petition NAFCOM and state the facts about any suspected financial malpractices. He added that the Committee will investigate every allegation by checking the financial records and banking history of the affected branches or chapters before drawing its conclusions.
Dr. Oyadiran said handling financial misconduct in the ANTP will no longer be business as usual.