Greed for power, selfishness major cause of corruption in Africa — Mkapa
Former President of Tanzania, Benjamin Mkapa
Describes Zik As Icon Of African Dignity
The Former President of Tanzania, Benjamin Mkapa, at the weekend, said greed for power and selfishness were the major cause of corruption, which is the bane hampering development in Africa.
He spoke as Guest Lecturer at the 7th Zik Lecture held at Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka. He described Zik as an icon of African dignity, whose footsteps should be emulated by African leaders.
Speaking on the topic: “Taming the Monster of Corruption In Africa,” the former President, who argued that the scourge was neither Ebola nor peculiar to Africa, accused the West of also being corrupt.
Bemoaning the level of corruption in the continent, he said African countries would remain in a vicious cycle of non-development until the monster of corruption was tackled head-on, calling on public holders to bridle their excesses. He chided past African leaders that have either been tried or convicted of corruption.
While advocating modesty in handling of public offices, he called for bottom-top institutional reform to ensure that fairness prevails, just as he urged establishment of a common standard of morality and integrity, which would help wipe out corruption.
The chairman of the occasion, Senate President, Federal Republic of Nigeria, Dr. Bukola Saraki, while recalling Zik’s role in securing independence for Nigeria said: “He fought for our people to be free from slavery and his contributions cannot be forgotten.”
He said there was need to work together to lift Nigeria from its present state, noting that Zik used his intellectual to pull Africans together.
He identified impunity, lack of rule of law and financial misappropriation as forms of corruption, calling for concerted efforts to curb them.
Speaking on the same subject, Senator Ben Obi, the former Governor of Anambra State and Vice Presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Mr. Peter Obi, described corruption as hydra headed monster that “kills professionalism, entrepreneurship and hard work,” thus rendering societies and countries incapable of any meaningful development.