By LEVI NWABUGHIOGU
ABUJA—Former Chairman of Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, and presidential candidate of Action Congress of Nigeria in 2011 general elections, Malam Nuhu Ribadu, Sunday, said Nigeria could only survive when the citizens and leadership of the country uphold the virtue of honesty and patriotism.
Ribadu, who spoke while delivering a lecture, titled “Nigeria: A Generation’s Quest for Home”, said what Nigeria needed to be developed was not mere change of leadership for a realization of the lofty potentials of the youths and good governance.
He also stated that leaders with conscience, a functional civil service institution that would not ask for bribe, a corrupt-free Judiciary, among others, were indispensable for a new Nigeria.
He said: “What Nigeria needs to realize its potentials is, unfortunately, not mere change of leadership. We don’t need anyone from outer space to come and organise our polity. What we need are ourselves, our virtues and belief in a collective struggle for good governance.
“What we need are functional institutions. We need institutions that pander to the principle of honesty and socialize successions of citizens who will extol this principle.
“We need leaders for whom the sufferings of the masses are immediate concerns, not jokers that insult yearnings and honest observations of the electorates.
“We need institutions in which the lawmakers gather to discuss the plight of their constituents, not losing their sense of our realities in the luxuries of the state and federal capitals. We need a judiciary that exerts its independence and resists any prejudice in the discharge of justice.
“We need a civil service that does not ask for bribes to do that for which they receive salaries. We need institutions! We need functional institutions to restore the lost glories and trust that make a sane nation. Our trouble in this country is principally the collapse of our institutions”.
“Our potentials are lost in our civic decadence, which stares at us in the face wherever we go: we see the decadence in the eyes of the policeman flipping through our particulars, we see the decadence in the eyes of the university registrar demanding for bribes to grant or facilitate admissions, we see the decadence in the eyes of every citizen who has lost hope in Nigeria.”
Ribadu told his audience that industriousness and determination were necessary tools for a brighter future.