A University don, Professor Dawood Omolumen Egbefo of the Department of History and International Studies at the Edo State University Uzairue, has blamed the legislature and the judiciary for not living up to the people expectations by discharging their real responsibilities, thereby encouraging corruption in Nigeria.

Prof. Egbefo, who is the Deputy Vice Chancellor Academic, made the assertion while delivery the 13th inaugural lecture series of the Edo State University Uzairue, titled: Democratic Governance and the Challenges of Poverty, Corruption and National Security Crisis in Nigeria Since 1999, at the Aliko Dangote Auditorium.

Prof. Egbefo said the judiciary as the third tier has been made to do what the government want or not being allowed to perform their actual duties, as what they do is just paperwork and the real effective issues of the judiciary is in the hands of the executive.

According to Egbefo, “for the past 4-8 years now, we have seen how the judiciary have been made to do what the government want or not being allowed to perform their actual duties. What they do is just paperwork and the real effective issues of the judiciary are in the hands of the executive.”

On the other hand, he said the legislature have not been able to achieve the administrative instrument, the instrument that will put good governance on ground have not been established, saying the legislature are supposed to make laws for good governance or always see to what the executive is about to or are doing can be implemented for good governance.

He said until we actually redefine what true governance is, that is where we can separate both good and bad governance, adding that if we remain like this, democracy will keep on promoting poverty thereby leading to corruption, and the problem we are facing will take time to be solve.

He further accused the government for not being able to drive home or put on ground a structure or system that would be able to check corruption, as people are interested in corruption as a result of the kind of wealth they want at the detriment of others.

He said the issue of corruption did not start today as we have seen government officials taking bribe to carry out their official duties or government engaging or involving in bribing companies or contractors at the same time claiming to be fighting corruption by setting up EFCC, ICPC and others.

Though he however praised the past administrations for making significant progress in the fight against corruption by arresting and prosecutions of those who engaged in corrupt practices in the private and public sectors, such as top government officials including former governors, ministers and local government chairmen have been dragged before courts to answer to corruption charges.

He said that eradication of corruption is not just a difficult task if the right machinery is put in place like other developed countries, where there are tested institutions that make it impossible for the corrupt to be ultimate winner, adding that we should get to a point where corruption is seen as a serious crime and not just as an attempt by an individual to take his own share of the national cake, and good example should be made against any offender rather than free bargain.

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The Prof suggested that we must all come to the full realization that corruption is as dangerous to the society as it is to the individual, as corruption is a major cause of the country’s underdevelopment and especially in the area of poor infrastructure.

He said law may be an aid to good government but by no means the most important factor in establishing peace and harmony is for us to elect good leaders because law can only be effective if the right man is placed in power.

In his conclusion, he said the enthronement of democracy and good governance in Nigeria are necessary for the socio-economic and political transformation of the country in the 21st Century.

“Nigeria demand good governance, justice, free from corruption, free of national security crisis, equity, fairness and real development and progress of the country in order to encourage confidence and trust in the polity,” he said.

He said the fight against corruption must be carried out with total commitment from the political leadership backed by strong political will devoid of lip-service and rhetorics, and there should be a serious drive towards poverty reduction and inequality through people oriented policies and programmes which will address the basic necessary of life such as food, shelter, healthcare services, safe drinking water, electricity, education, employment, among others.

Earlier in his address, the Vice Chancellor of the university, Engr. Prof. Emmanuel Aluyor, said since inception, the university has been committed to providing academic excellence to achieve her mandates.

The Vice Chancellor, who was represented by the Deputy Vice Chancellor Administration, Prof. Anthony O. Nwaopara, said the university has been dogged in exploring technology-based materials for teaching, learning and assessment.

“Our institution has remained in the vanguard of academic excellence with highly qualified staff that is highly dedicated and primed to expose our students to diverse fields of human endeavour,” he said.

Prof. Aluyor further stated that the university curricula for the different programmes in the nine faculties are designed in such a way to fulfill the mission and vision of the university.