Ex-Commonwealth Scribe, Emeka Anyaoku Cries Out, Says Nigeria Is Being Looted Dry
Former Commonwealth Secretary-General, Chief Emeka Anyaoku has lamented the state of the Nigerian nation saying that the country is almost eaten up by corruption.
Speaking as chairman at the 2012 Annual Conference of the Faculty of Arts, Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka today,Anyaoku he’s deeply worried by the level of corruption in official quarters in the country.
According to him: “My third point which I would like to stress is that the basic impediment to good governance in Nigeria is the challenge of corruption. Apart from fuelling the mismanagement of our national resources, corruption detracts from our character as a people, as well as impugns the integrity of our leadership at all levels of governance.
“The leaders of our three tiers of government, of our academic and other institutions, of the private sector, and of the civil organizations and societies, must in their conduct become more aware of Billy Graham’s assertion that ‘when wealth is lost, nothing is lost; when health is lost, something is lost, but when character is lost, all is lost’.
“At the moment, the entire nation is treated to the mind-boggling and sickening details that are coming out from the fuel subsidy probe and the police pension scam. Misappropriation of public funds used to be described in millions, now it is reported in billions and even trillions.
“Corruption has so seriously eaten deep into the fabric of our society that it has virtually swallowed up our collective values. There is hardly any sector of our national life that has been spared this affliction, including even the family that was until recently, the last line of defense and hope.
“We read in newspapers that some parents acquiesce in and often support examination malpractices by their children or wards; and this is not to talk about many of our communities that approbate and festoon very rich individuals, including public servants, with dubious sources of enrichment.
“In addition to reinvigorating the work of the anti-corruption agencies like the ICPC and the EGCC and ensuring that those involved in corruption are seen to be punished, the attack on corruption in Nigeria must begin in the education sector. We must return to basics by remodeling our school’s curricula and encouraging our teachers to teach civics and the virtues of service to the community and country, in our primary and secondary schools; for it is only at this level of education that appropriate values can be effectively inculcate in the young thereby inuring them against inclination to corruption in later life.
“Addition to transparency, there is an acute need for Nigeria to get right, the deployment of national revenue between recurrent and capital expenditure. In 2010, the Expenditure Review Committee (ERC) that the federal government set up to look into this problem unanimously expressed concern that across all tiers of government in Nigeria, the cost of governance, particularly at the level of recurrent or overhead costs, is increasingly spiraling every year.”