New Telegraph

Fayemi to FG: Get rid of poverty, insurgency, illiteracy

Ekiti State governor, Dr. Kayode Fayemi, wants the Federal Government to invest more time towards solving the nation’s developmental deficit. Fayemi, who spoke at public presentation of a book: “Nigeria Democracy without Development: How to fix it,” written by Omano Edigheji, Special Adviser to Kaduna State governor, Mallam Nasir el-Rufai, called on the Federal Government to tackle poverty, illiteracy and insurgency, which he said are hindering development in the country.

Represented by Senator Olubunmi Adetunmbi, the Ekiti governor said “democracy can only be sustained by people who are happy, who can foresee a future for themselves and their children’s future. “And because of the current stability they enjoy, they want to use the instrument of democracy to sustain that.” According to him, in an environment where there is poverty and lack, it is difficult to have democracy, noting that majority of Nigerians are unable to put food on their table.

“I hold the view that to have a democratic state, we first and foremost must succeed as developmental state because it is when we letget rid of poverty, illiteracy and insurgency that you can talk of democracy. “It is only when this human calamities are taken away from a polity of a geographical location, that is the only time you can say that democracy can work. “Unfortunately, we are believing that democracy in our country will lead to development, and that has been the state of Nigeria since independence.

“That is why I believe that any government, including the current government needs to invest more time, more thinking and will bring all hands on deck so that we can solve the problem of developmental deficits,” he added. Dr. Innocent Chukwuma of Ford Foundation decried the role of godfatherism in Nigerian politics, regretting that godfathers have hijacked governance in the country. He attributed this to the criteria given by Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) for the registration of political parties in 1998. Chukwuma noted it was “only those who fed fat during the military and who could amass the wealth” were able to meet these criteria. Head, Transparency International in Nigeria, Auwal Ibrahim Musa, said democracy is not a license for corruption.

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