Obviously, the foundation of Nigeria was built on corruption because the amalgamation of the defunct Southern and Northern Protectorates in 1914 was executed by the political fiat of late Lord Frederick Lugard, then Governor-General of the two protectorates, without the consent of the various nationalities that constituted the two protectorates.
Thus, the seed of corruption was sowed, watered and grown by the forceful amalgamation of the Southern and Northern Protectorates. That was the impregnation, birth and genesis of the deep-rooted corruption in Nigeria….CONTINUE READING
However, the country operated federalism from 1954 after the three regions, North, South and West, were created and the fourth region, Midwest, was created through a referendum in 1963. The four regions existed till 1966 when the ill-advised military usurped the political power and introduced a unitary system of government that has retarded the development of the country.
Therefore, the regions developed at their own pace; some had ministers, ambassadors and constitutions as they deemed fit. The federal structure also promoted a healthy competition among the regions hence when the Western Nigerian Television was established on October 31, 1959 by late Chief Obafemi Awolowo, the Premier of the defunct Western Region, the Eastern Nigerian Television and the Northern Nigerian Television were established in 1960 and 1962 respectively in quick successions. The same competitive spirit was also replicated in the education sector with the establishment of the University of Nigeria, Nsukka in 1958, University of Ife (now Obafemi Awolowo University) in 1962 and Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria in 1962. Various industries also sprang up across the country then.
But the healthy and competitive spirit that thrived under the federal system was abrogated and replaced with the current strangulating unitary system when the military made incursion into the Nigerian politics on January 15, 1966. Thus, the seed of corruption sowed by Lord Lugard was watered by the military which turned the country into a unitary state.
Therefore, structural corruption was watered and nourished by the octopus annexation, rigging of elections, thuggery, nepotism, thievery, kleptomaniacs, kleptoparasites and revenue sharing without thought to revenue generation. Under this obnoxious unitary system, the states own the lands but weirdly, all the natural resources, crude oil and solid minerals deposited in the lands, belong to the federal government!
Under this retrogressive system, a sitting president has unilateral powers to allocate oil blocks to his kith and kin. This is why many individuals own oil blocks in Nigeria more than oil companies. No corruption is worse than this and no other country operates this type of obnoxious system of government!
Rigging of election occasioned by thuggery is the worst form of corruption because it instates people who don’t have the mandate of the electorates. Such impostors preside over the affairs of the nation and lord it over the citizenry at various strata of government. Nepotism is another form of corruption as it gives undue advantage to the kith and kin of those at the corridor of power. Structural corruption allows candidates with low scores in JAMB examinations from certain parts of the country to gain admission into the universities of their choice while candidates with higher scores in the same examinations from other parts of the country will not gain admission into the universities.
Likewise, the unitary system is also a barrier to the development of electricity in the country as the transmission lines belong to the federal government. States that contribute nothing to the national grid enjoys electricity than states that generate it. This is why electricity has remained inadequate in the country after 62 years of pseudo independence.
In spite of the importance of security, it is solely under the control of the federal government hence, even if people are being killed mindlessly in the states, the governors who bear the sobriquet of Chief Security Officers of their states, can’t give directives to the Commissioners of Police to take action.
Similarly, the country operates a revenue sharing system where revenue sharing is based on the number of Local Government Areas and populations of states instead of revenue generation. It is only Nigeria that operates this form of revenue sharing system, hence there is no accurate data bank in the country, as data generated from censuses are falsified in order to get huge revenue allocations without such states contributing anything to the national treasury.
Only the states in the Niger Delta with crude oil are bearing the abysmal loads of providing the revenues for the existence of the entire country. Provocatively, other states are mining their silver, gold, uranium, bauxite, limestone, granite, californium, etc. and keeping the proceeds to themselves.
According to Major Hamzad Al-Mustapha (rtd), former Chief Security Officer to late Gen. Sani Abacha, californium is in abundance in Borno State. He said a gram of californium costs $27m and a kilogram amounts to $27 billion! This is what a clique of people are mining and keeping the proceeds to themselves but the pittance that comes from crude oil in the Niger Delta is for all Nigerians! Who are the people mining the californium in Borno State? Who?
The suffocating unitary system has created acrimony, hatred, distrust, ethnicity, religious bigotry, etc. hence there are militant groups across the country.
Thus, the seed of corruption was sowed by the forceful amalgamation of the defunct Southern and Northern Protectorates by Lord Lugard, watered and nurtured by the military. Every successive government has promised to combat corruption without success because the unitary system which is the foundation of corruption is being nourished by the profiteers. Thus, no government can fight corruption in Nigeria if the unitary system of government is not destroyed and replaced with true federalism. It is only true federalism that will enable the states to generate, control their resources, pay taxes to the federal government and also develop at their own pace….CONTINUE READING