I have tried so hard to stay behind the scene and just watch all the drama about how people we voted into power, looted and mismanaged our resources. I tried to figure out what on earth could these individuals who stole and turned our national wealth to their personal inheritance that has to be shared amongst themselves, think of the masses.

I kept wondering what was running through their minds. But  I found no answers to my questions.

“In the history of Nigeria there has never been and Nigeria has never experienced any act of corruption at this level”, where the lives of people no longer matter to our leaders who were supposed to be the good Shephards that citizens look up to.

Therefore can we collectively agree that the immediate past government ruined the future of our country without considering what happens to the majority or even to our later generations?. I doubt if anyone in his or her rightful state of mind will disagree with that.

My observation and findings reveal that corruption was perpetrated with impunity with little or no effort at bringing the perpetrators to justice during ex-President Good luck Jonathan administration.He lacked the power of organization and was conspicuously deficient in the management and control alike of men or business and economy. His government loved the display of power but failed to realize its responsibility.

Despite the establishment of the anti-graft commissions by the Obasanjo Administration to fight corruption, Ex President Jonathan allowed corruption to escalate like wildfire and very few people or none were prosecuted successfully during his tenor.

The Genesis of Corruption in Nigeria:

History also revealed that during the amalgamation of Nigeria in 1914, Sir Frederick Lugard placed the three major ethnic groups in the country advantaged over the minority ethnic groups. And therefore making the minorities, who felt insecure in the hands of the major ethnic groups, resorted to manipulations as the major ethnic groups attempted to maneuver their ways. It is this suspicious attitude of the people that made up the country from one another, to lobby for a person to a higher position for selfish interests that resulted in corrupt practices. Therefore corruption has been in existence since colonialism.

Notwithstanding, it is not a priority for us to allow corruption to destroy the country and become a way of life.
We must understand that one of the greatest threats to economic and political development and stability of any nation is corruption. Moreover, this challenges of corruption have remained a major devastating issue facing Nigeria since the colonial period, the phenomena have become a cankerworm that has eaten deep into the fabrics of our system.

Nevertheless, its solution rests presently in our hands and we should not put it off to another generation. That is why many countries have put in place different mechanisms for checkmating the spate of corruption. In Nigeria, for example, the menace of corruption has been discussed at different levels, yet this ugly incidence kept surviving with us in all facets of our endeavors since the return of the country to civil rule.

The campaign to fight ruthlessly against corruption by the present government was as a result of inefficiency, incompetence, selfishness, greed, and lack of focus of the past government headed by the former president, Good luck Jonathan and his cabinet. They allowed corruption to eat and complicate the existence of our country. As a result, all the security exercises, diplomatic governance, and social initiatives that were undertaken during ex-presidents Jonathan regime became totally fraudulent and corrupt from all perspectives.

During a period of six years, Nigeria as a nation acknowledges the fact that over 50 people, including government officials, stole $9billion, prompting almost all the units of leadership during the past government to have participated in a terrible act of dishonesty and destroying the economic growth of Nigeria.

The pains afflicted by this violent political extremist, due to greed, lust for power and exploitation of the masses, totally placed our dear country where it is today for lack of competence and honesty, resulting in suffering and abject poverty that we face in Nigeria today.

Furthermore, In spite of all constitutional reforms in Nigeria, our country continues to face major governance challenges, manifested through various forms of corruption, ranging from petty, bureaucratic and political corruption to grand forms of corruption involving high-level officials, where a few minority of government officials steal away public funds.This is so devastating, “God is watching you people oooo”.

Corruption in Nigeria over the past six years can be characterized by a deeply entrenched system of extreme political patronage of PDP. And the tight grip of the past ruling party over the security forces, and the history of their political violence, repression, and manipulation of public funds were seen to be outrageous and depressive, causing the death of over 25,000 soldiers and civilians including children and displaced over 2,000,000 people in Nigeria.

However, I commend President Mohammed Buhari for his courage towards the fight against corruption and for the recovery that has been made over the past few months. Nigerians expect more scrutiny on the looters.

However, in order to pass a warning to the present administration and public office holder that corruption is now a CRIME in Nigeria, I will suggest that tougher punishment should be implemented for any act of corruption. And as for those who have returned part of the stolen money, justice should be served appropriately.

Other Causes of Corruption in Nigeria Are:
1. Lack of the fear of God while seeking power and position at all cost
2. Selfishness in leadership and Government incompetence
3. Weak Government institutions
4. Poor salary and incentives for civil servants
5. Lack of Transparency in public service
6. Absence of a thorough anti-corruption penalties
7. Ineffective political processes of political parties
8. Corruption as a culturally accepted act by the populace
9. Ethnic and religious differences Resource scramble
10. Indiscipline in the government and public places.

In as much as there is a large consensus in the literature on the negative impact of corruption on economic growth of Nigeria, we must also note that the effect of corruption on the growth of our country is totally associated with factors such as Nigeria legal and institutional framework, the quality of governance and political regime.

In addition, we should also bear in mind that if Nigeria lacks effective government institutions and governance systems, corruption will continue to compensate for red tape and institutional weaknesses and “grease the wheels” of the economy, no matter how hard we fight it.

Meanwhile, as we are currently experiencing the corrosive impact of corruption on our economic growth, equality and the quality of our country’s governance and institutional environment which is due to lack of honesty in the past government, we will find out that corruption is likely to also adversely affect a long-term economic growth through its impact on investment, taxation, public expenditures and human development.

These perpetrated acts of Corruption by our past government is also likely to undermine the regulatory environment and the efficiency of our state institutions as rent-seeking distorts incentives and decision-making processes and progress for the present administration.

Not only will corruption affect economic development in terms of economic efficiency and growth, it will also affect equitable distribution of resources across the population, increasing income inequalities, undermining the effectiveness of social welfare programs and ultimately resulting in lower levels of human development. This, in turn, may also undermine long-term sustainable development, economic growth, and equality.

Therefore, Nigerians must endure and give a  total support to this present government, as such, it will take more than four years to put back Nigeria economic in its right position, we should all  understand that  a lot has been destroyed by the past government and it will take a while to put our country  in order again.

Let me also seize this opportunity to remind this administration to quickly make the problem of electricity its first priority and a solution to tackle the economic situation of the country.

Finally, I urge every Nigerian to stand up and help fight against corruption. God bless Nigeria and God help President Mohammed Buhari and his team.

Ademola Omoboriowo Adetunji
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