Corruption: Group Reiterates Need for Building of Strong Institutions

           MC for the event-Actor, Keppy Ekpenyong introducing the Keynote speaker, Prof Fagbohun

By FRANCIS OGBONNA

Project 45, a global body of professionals committed to effecting positive changes in the Nigerian society has emphasized the need for the Federal Government to build strong institutions, if it must succeed with its current anti-corruption drive.

The group, who made this position known at the maiden Dr. Bolaji Carew Memorial Lecture which held last Saturday in Lagos, reiterated that by doing this the FG would be bequeathing to the people a lasting framework that can check corruption at all levels, long after they have left the scene.

A member of the group and Keynote Speaker for the event, the Vice Chancellor, Lagos State University, Ojo, Prof Olanrewaju Adigun Fagbohun; Ph.D., speaking on the theme: ‘Promoting the Rule of Law in Nigeria: The Role of Institutions’, noted that although corruption is a common feature in developed climes, the structures established by their governments makes sure that perpetrators are punished for their crimes.

The Professor of Law laments that: “Every political landscape will be confronted with this (Corruption) and like what is obtainable in other climes, Nigeria is lacking in laws to berth institutional governance, but what saddens me is that our public institutions which are supposed to serve as checks and balances on public officers and leaders who act in error or abuse offices wittingly or unwittingly are not able to live up to expectation.”

Dr. Christopher Okeke, who served as a member of the panel of discussants that considered Prof. Fagbohun’s speech, added that “The first this country “Nigeria needs is upholding the principles of separation of powers, because the country as it were looks like it is being run like a dictatorship state. We must change the way we do things, beginning from making sure that everyone is held to the same standards at all time.”

                     (From L-R) Amb Udofia (2nd right) and Prof Fagbohun (4th right)

Bar. Patrick Etim, a member of the group and panelist, on his part stressed that “there cannot be strong institutions unless the people (Nigerians) themselves are ready to change. In Nigeria we are held back by religious sentiments, political sentiments and all other types of sentiments and until this orientation changes we will not make any meaningful progress.”

The group in conclusion urged the FG to expedite action on this beginning the process by teaching the next generation.    

The event which was held in Orchid Hotels, Lagos was the inaugural edition of the lecture inaugurated to celebrate the life and achievements of Dr. Carew, an erudite and foremost scholar, who served as Provost at the Adeniran Ogunsanya College of Education, Ijanikin, and Lagos from June, 1991 to June, 1998. 

Eulogizing the late Provost, the National President of the Project 45, Chief Charles Okonkwo we are here to celebrate a man whose passion for youth development and empowerment was commendable.

             Left, moderator of the event Mr. Patrice Okaro (UK) introducing the family of Dr. Carew

Chief Okonkwo stated: “Dr. Carew throughout his lifetime fought tirelessly for equality, dignity and justice and he would continue our hearts and that of all those who were fortunate to have come in contact with him.

“We as his disciples will remain fully committed to his vision and all Dr. Carew espoused, starting from doing more to help in promoting the rule of law.”

Project 45 is a body of professionals worldwide who wants to make a difference in the society with the view of affecting fellow Nigerians in a positive way. Education is a necessary tool to the development of a Nation's economy and establishment of educational institutions support and commitment.


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