Mr. Peter Obi, the former governor of Anambra State, has lamented the rising insecurity and criminality in Nigeria under President Muhammadu Buhari’s government, claiming that mediocrity has taken precedence over meritocracy.
After meeting with envoys from the British High Commission led by Head of the Political Desk, Aneesah Islam, Obi spoke to journalists in his home town of Agulu, Anaocha Local Government Area of Anambra State. He regretted that religion and ethnicity are the main promoters of inefficiency and failure in Nigeria.
Those who base leadership positions on race and religion rather than skill and capacity, he claims, only contribute to the country’s inefficiency and failure.
“The continued recruitment of people for leadership positions, on any basis other than competence, will only continue to produce a crop of incompetent leaders who are not capable of developing the nation,” Obi said, noting that though he supports zoning of some electoral offices, it should not be at the expense of merit.
“I support zoning of some political offices to ensure fairness and equity, because each zone has competent people capable of developing the nation.”
Obi emphasized that Nigeria has continued to go from bad to worse due to the failure of leadership in the country.
“Insecurity and criminality have worsened under this administration. Nigeria is more divided today than it has ever been. Mediocrity is now celebrated above meritocracy. The standard of living is worsening every day, with soaring inflation and poverty rate,” he said.
“All these are happening because we have leaders who gained access to power through ethnic and religious sentiments rather than competence and past records of success.”
The former governor, who campaigned as the People’s Democratic Party’s vice presidential candidate in the 2019 general election, also denounced what he called “transactional politics” in Nigeria, which he claims expresses itself more during elections.
He stated that if true democracy is to be established in the country, the unsavory culture of vote buying and other political vices must be eradicated in future elections.
Finally, he urged people to look for leaders with a demonstrated track record of achievement in both private and public life, as well as an understanding of what it takes to grow a country.