18 January 2013

Nigeria: Corruption Collapses Nigeria's Development System - Wilmot

London — A former lecture at the Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, Dr Patrick Wilmot has said that the problem with corruption in Nigeria is that it has made the "whole (development) system in the country dysfunctional".

In an interview with the Daily Trust in London, Wilmot said corruption in Nigeria was such that "the politicians are just there to share the money they get from oil and other sources". Wilmot was deported from Nigeria in 1988 "for teaching what he was not paid to teach".

The former sociology lecturer said there was more corruption in other countries than Nigeria in terms of the money stolen, but even with corruption, those countries are able to grow and develop because their systems are working.

"There is corruption in China, Italy, US, and the UK, but the difference is that if there is no electricity or any other essential services in those countries, the government will be sacked," he said.

"Even in Jamaica, which is a small country with no oil, if there are queues at filling stations for two days running, the government is likely to fall", he said, adding that no government in China or Jamaica could survive the kind of perennial lack of electricity that obtains in Nigeria.

"But in Nigeria, the people just sit. They don't bother about it", he said, and lamented that in spite of the "incalculable" money spent on electricity in the country, "the amount of electricity is not more than what obtained when I first came to Nigeria in 1970. That is pathetic."

He urged Nigerians to demand from their leaders what they are elected to do, stressing that any government that does not provide the basics for the people does not deserve to stay in power.

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