Ambassador of the United States (U.S.) to Nigeria, William Stuart Symington, has said that disregard for justice and rule of law is more damning a form of corruption than stealing of public funds.
The U.S. envoy stated this yesterday at the 34th convocation lecture of University of Ilorin (UNILORIN) entitled "Citizen Leadership and the Link between Economic Diversity and Democratic Good Governance" where he said the task of making Nigeria is that of both the government and the citizenry.
Symington, who noted that patriotism, selfless and transparent service, justice and consistency in doing good as important factors on how Nigeria could develop as the U.S., and that disregard of justice and the rule of law should be seen as greater form of corruption than stealing of money, said: "What many consider as the great corruption is stealing of money but what to me is the great corruption is when people are deprived of justice, that is when you do things without regard to the rule of law.
He said the process of making Nigeria great requires collective efforts of all the stakeholders with the citizens working with the government instead of only relying on government for an improved fortune.
The U.S. envoy said any young one who desires to contribute in future to transformation of the country to a better one should start the process now by trying hard to change the life of his partner to better where necessary.
"One of the most important things that I want you to leave today with is the idea that good governance can only come from strong independent citizens," he said.
Meanwhile, the Acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Mr. Ibrahim Magu, has sought the support of Nigerians in fight against corruption in the country.
The EFCC chairman, who spoke yesterday at a meeting with stakeholders in Gombe, said that the commission could not succeed in the fight against crimes without the support of members of the public.
Magu, who believes that corruption is the major problem holding back the development of the country, said the EFCC is convinced that to overcome and defeat the menace, the fight must be citizen-owned.