ONE thing that I discovered about Nigerians is that for our country to develop, we need to change our mentality. We have come to see corruption as a way of life that we don’t see any big deal when someone steals from the country. It has reached a situation whereby those who are criminals are celebrated as long as they can part with money.
We have turned money to a god which we worship; we have forgotten the values instilled in us by our forefathers. I could remember that my grandmother once told me that in the olden days, sellers did not need to stay with their wares. They just put the money value of the items by the wares, and people would buy and put the money there, and in the evening, the seller would come and take the money. This is definitely not possible again in the country.
It is this same value that makes our judges sentence a criminal who has stolen a mobile phone to 10 years imprisonment, while a public office holder who has stolen billions is allowed to negotiate his punishment through plea bargaining. However, it is high time something was done about this negative attitude of ours.
- Esther Ajakaiye,