by Adeyinka Akintunde
President of the Nigerian Institute of Management (Chartered) Professor Olukunle Iyanda, has urged the federal government to strengthen education of her citizens and de-monetization of politics as a way of strengthening democracy in Nigeria.
Iyanda, speaking in Lagos at a press briefing on Wednesday, said that people voting for those with a good track-record during elections, and demonetizing politics, to make it less financially attractive will encourage good people to go into governance.
The erudite scholar also spoke on the issue of national unity, asserting that “our problem may be that we have not adopted a structure suitable for Nigerian characteristics. Our characteristics include the fact that we are large in terms of size and number, and we are heterogeneous.
“We need to adopt a structure in which all the constituent units can adopt their peculiarities without compromising their national interest. It is the lack of these that causes disharmony and conflict in the country.”
Iyanda further urged the federal government to address the infrastructure deficit, security issues and political inconsistencies suffered by the country.
According to him, it is possible to lift people out of poverty “but we need to adopt the right policies, focus more on people than on politicians and be less partisan.
“If you want to lift people out of poverty, do not give them money, but empower them with jobs. The only way to create jobs is to be productive and you cannot be productive without electricity and good roads,” Iyanda said.
On the issue of food security, Iyanda wondered whether Nigerian would ever attain development if she keeps importing food from other countries.
For him “no grain of rice or tomatoes should be imported into Nigeria. We can produce rice, as well as tomatoes, and even export then to other countries.
“We should encourage agriculture in this country. If we do, we will not import from outside.”
The President and Chairman of Council, NIM, told journalists that the institute, as part of its contribution to nation building, would hold national management conference with the theme: “Managing the Challenges of Democracy”.
He said the conference, which is scheduled to hold from 15th to 17th September, in Abuja, hopes to proffer various solutions to improving Nigeria’s democracy and making it impact more on citizen’s welfare.
He said that at the end of the conference, the institute would send a position paper to the government to help in tackling the challenges of governance.