By Olasunkanmi Akoni & Monsur Olowoopejo
LAGOS—Governor Olusegun Mimiko of Ondo State identified defective upbringing and personality problems as key factors responsible for the reason political leaders often steal public funds and engage in various acts of corruption in public offices.
Mimiko, however, urged women at different levels to fully get involved in political activism by protesting naked against all forms of injustice and corrupt practices.
He made the remarks at the tenth National Women Conference, NWC, which was organised by the Committee of Wives of Lagos State Officials, COWLSO, held in Lagos.
Also at the conference were: the state governor, Mr. Babatunde Raji Fashola(SAN); Lagos State Chairman of the Action Congress of Nigeria, ACN; Delta State First Lady, Mrs. Roli Uduaghan, and her Ondo State counterpart, Mrs. Oluwakemi Mimiko, among others.
Mimiko blamed the rot in the country on what he described as “defective upbringing, collapsed value system and weak family structure, which did not help build requirements for the prudent management of public funds”.
He said: “It is only in this part of the world that leaders will steal more than three or four generations’ need. This is very unfortunate. Such a leader indeed has personality problems and defective background. The consequence brings about sufferings for several millions.
“The building of a country starts with a family. Defective upbringing is responsible for leadership problems in the country today.
“When a man steals more than he needs, you will discover that something is wrong with him. Until we have a solid family system, it will be difficult to cure Nigeria ’s perennial problems.”
He also told a gathering of sophisticated female delegates from different states of the federation to stand against all forms of injustice, electoral frauds and corrupt practices, which inflict untold pains and sufferings on the people of Nigeria .
He cited an example of how Ondo State women staged a protest in the middle of the Benin_Akure Road on the day the state 2007 governorship election was announced, saying the women protested naked against all forms of injustice.
Mimiko therefore said if women “can protest naked, the country will shake. And there will be desired change we pray to witness. Change will not come in this country until women fully get involved in political activism”.
He commended the country’s country judiciary, saying the history of his political “will not be complete without the judiciary, which he said, favourably determined his petition against the usurper of the mandate my people gave me”.
He added that his administration conducted a study recently and discovered that about 36 percent of retirees in the state died while waiting for their benefits and gratuities. As a result, he said, we paid N1.4 billion to the retirees in the state.