To put simply, Corruption is the abuse of entrusted power for private gain. It hurts everyone who depends on the integrity of people in a position of authority.
It is an illegal, immoral and dishonest behavior, particularly among people in position of authority.
It is the fastest growing industry in Nigeria. There is a saying in some quarters that “if Nigeria does not kill corruption, corruption will kill Nigeria.”
Graft has eaten deep into the nation’s fabric such that it would be an herculean task to find honest people in different corners of Nigeria.
It has become a constant discussion on radio, television and other media. Corruption has dangerously threatened our society to an extent people don’t really cherish hardwork and diligence anymore.
Those who acquire material wealth by crooked means were praised and honoured, while hardworking and poor people are treated with disdain.
Corruption has become our way of life. Corruption is everywhere, you can see, feel, hear and even smell corruption in the country. The influence of corruption is highly felt in all sectors, including the various arms of government.
The private sector and religious group are not left out; sometimes I wonder what the country has become. Those people that pilfered our commonwealth are hero worshipped by all and sundry.
Even those who were expected to spearhead the fight against corruption in the society are also guilty of the same offence.
Or what would you say about a police officer who was summoned to arrest a criminal only to turn around and accuse the complainant of committing the offence after money had exchange hands?
Some Nigerians have expressed their views on the situation.
To Sylvia Chikeze, a youth corps member, successive governments in Nigeria had not demonstrated the necessary political will to tackle the problem head on.
She said, “The mentality of an average Nigerian is being exploited by our government in the sense that if you don’t do whatever it takes to either be rich or successful then you are never going to get anything. Corruption is something that has eaten deep into our society and I doubt if it can ever be tackled.”
A retired Deputy Superintendent of Police, Musa Olisa, corroborated Chikeze’s view, saying government only paid lip service to anti-graft war. “We need political will to tackle graft in this country and it is obvious that the government is not ready to do this, but only paid lip service to it.
“Corruption has gone round in Nigeria – both in the public and private sectors. Individuals too are not left out. Government at all levels are not genuinely concerned about tackling corruption. Several factors had made people think that the police force is one of the most corrupt organizations in Nigeria, but this is not true.
“Recent reports have shown that the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, the Nigerian Airways and even the media are more corrupt and that shows how far we had gone as a nation, “