It is evident that corruption has eaten deep into to the political and social system of Nigeria. It has caused so much destruction to the country and has also gotten Nigeria among the top 10 most corrupt countries in the world as at 2018. In this article, i will discuss comprehensively the problem of corruption in Nigeria, with special reference to its causes, effects or implication and cogent solutions to the problem in Nigeria.
However, before i go into discussing this topic, i did will to define the term Corruption according to some authorities.
WHAT IS CORRUPTION?
According to the Advance Learner’s Dictionary, “Corruption is a noun, which means illegal, immoral or dishonest behaviour, especially by people in position of power”. Also according to Macmillan Contemporary Dictionary (1979), corruption is derived from honest, influenced by bribery; to induce an act dishonestly. From the above definitions, we can see that the word corruption implies immorality or dishonest, especially on the part of people who are the leaders.
It is also worthwhile to note that it does not end there. Corruption may also include nepotism, tribalism and favouritism in any organisation. Any organisation in this sense may include; the family, church or even in the school. This clearly show the divergent dimensions corruption can play in the society.
CAUSES OF CORRUPTION IN NIGERIA
Below are the causes of corruption in Nigeria:
- Unequal distribution of resources
- Lack of patriotism
- Inactive government enforcement agency
Here i will discuss each of these points, to give you a vivid picture of what they mean.
Illiteracy is one of the major cause of corruption Nigeria. Those who instigate the corrupt act, don’t actually know the implementation of what they are doing, and those who help in carrying out the act is even worse, because they are unaware that it will affect them most.
People of low class in the country, are being used by corrupt politicians in the country because they are illiterates, and cannot resist themselves from helping in the corrupt act, as they have already been given some token to satisfy their immediate need.
Immediately after illiteracy, is greed. This is on the side of those who instigate the corrupt act. Some people who engage in corruption, do not engage because they are illiterate, they engage because of their greed and selfishness.
In so many occasions in Nigeria, where people have been caught performing corrupt actions, there is always an element of greed or selfishness. This explicitly show that greed is one of the major cause of corrupt practices in Nigeria.
- Unequal Distribution of Resources:
Another obvious cause of corruption in Nigeria is unequal distribution of resources or wealth in the country. When resources in the country are not distributed equal among every states, leaders of those states may find it difficult to do what they are supposed to do in their states. Coupled to this, people will be forced to engage in corrupt practices, as that is the only way to get the resources or wealth from the centre government.
- Lack of patriotism:
Because many people in Nigeria are not really patriotic, the corrupt practices in the country has continued to penetrate into the system rapidly.
About 97% of Nigerians today prefer taking part in corrupt actions, than to report it. This is because, they believe it will benefit them most of done that way. It is only few people who are patriotic, and knows the true implication of corruption in the country, that always able to stand against it.
- Inactive Government enforcement agencies:
It is true that there are agencies in Nigeria that are supposed to fight corruption, but the question is, are these agencies active? If they are active, why are there still a large number of corrupt practices, recorded all over the country.
There are a lot of government enforcement agencies in the country that were created to fight corruption, but i can assure you that these agencies do not function in Nigeria.
Now that we have discuss little of the causes of corruption in Nigeria, let us quickly look at some of the effects or implications of corruption in Nigeria.
EFFECT OF CORRUPTION IN NIGERIA
If corruption should continue in Nigeria, the following will be it’s effect on the country:
- Increase in crime rate.
- High level of poverty and death in the country.
- Slow rate of development and international respect.
- High rate of brain drain in the country.
- Waste of skill and initiatives of young people in the country.
- Reduction of both foreign and local investors in the country.
- Destruction of a legitimate government.
- Corruption may also lead to huge capital out-flow as corrupt leaders will want to keep their ill-gotten money out side the country.
SOLUTION TO THE PROBLEM OF CORRUPTION IN NIGERIA
The best way corruption can be fought or eliminated in Nigeria, is to tackle all its causes, because it is totally impossible to solve a problem without knowing its causes. So, what are the solutions to the problem of corruption in Nigeria?
- Education / Public Enlightenment
- Effective activities of government enforcement agencies. E.g Economic and Financial Crime Commission (EFCC), Independent Corrupt Practices And Other Related Offence Commission (ICPC) and others.
- Good morals should be taught in the family.
- Human right education.
In conclusion, it is apparent that the problem of corruption in Nigeria is not a problem anyone should take lightly. It is a capable a causing damages that will affect the lives and future of everyone in the country. Thus, it is incumbent on every Nigerian to take part in the fight against corruption in Nigeria, because if corruption is drastically reduced, it will be of great benefit to everyone, including the young and the old people.