A former Vice-Chancellor of Veritas University, Abuja, Prof. Mike Kwanashie, has stated that transformational leadership is the key to sustainable development in Nigeria, in order to move the nation forward.
He noted that for a democracy to work, the leaders and the people should have ethics, love for the nation, respect for hard work, honesty, integrity and justice.
Kwanashie, a Professor of Economics, spoke on Thursday as the guest lecturer at the 53rd Founders’ Day and 48th convocation lecture of the University of Benin (UNIBEN), Edo State with a title: “Governance and Crisis of Development in Nigeria.”
The convocation lecture was preceded by an inter-faith thanksgiving service at the same Akin-Deko auditorium of the university, with the events chaired by Tor Tiv, Prof. James Ayatse, the Chairman of Benue State Council of Traditional Rulers, who is the Chancellor of the university.
The monarch, in his remarks, stated that he was proud of the feats that UNIBEN had accomplished over the years.
The guest lecturer said: “Democracy has not yet delivered a considerable uplift in living standards for most Nigerians. It is important to strengthen democratic institutions and articulate rules that will ensure transparency in the electoral process.
“Nigeria should adopt technologies that will facilitate openness and integrity of the electoral process. Nigeria must protect and expand voting rights, especially for poor people.
“Government officials must be trained in the principles of effective and developmental administration, and the respect of laws, as a first step towards rebuilding institutions. Commitment, due process and diligence and commitment to duty.”
He added, “Enhancing the capacity, independence and accountability of institutions involved in governance and public administration is crucial. This includes reforms in the judiciary, civil service and law enforcement agencies to promote transparency and efficiency.
“There is a need to implement comprehensive anti-corruption measures, including robust legal frameworks, enforcement mechanisms and public awareness campaigns, to combat corruption and promote good governance.
“It is imperative to articulate poverty alleviation and social welfare programmes to lift a large segment of society in light of the number of Nigerians who are living in poverty.
“Implementing targeted poverty alleviation programmes, such as conditional cash transfers, vocational training initiatives, and microfinance schemes, can help reduce poverty, empower marginalized communities, and promote inclusive development.”
The former vice-chancellor also stated that Nigeria must improve on investment in education, by increasing funding to public institutions at all levels, while private sector investment at all levels of the system should be encouraged and supported. “He said.