A Catholic Priest, Prof Phillip Ogbonna of the Imo State University (IMSU) Owerri, yesterday took a swipe at lawyers and politicians, who he accused as the destroyers of the Nigerian tenets, saying they have thwarted the system.
Revd Fr Ogbonna made the verdict during a one-day town hall meeting on Improving Local Governance and Service Delivery organised by Centre for Constitutional Governance (CCG) founded by late Dr Beko Ransome-Kuti, in Owerri, the Imo State capital.
Speaking on the topic: Strengthening citizens’ participation in local governance and using citizens’ feedback to improve local government, Prof Ogbonna said the educated people have turned around to become the problem of the society.
He said many educated people lack character and values, just as he regretted that Nigeria has no formal or standard format to groom youths for leadership positions.
Prof Ogbonna called for youth education and training in the school curriculum to provide a platform to model youths into worthy representatives.
On how to strengthen citizen participation in local governance, he advocated for understanding and using formal institutions of power; electing and appointing local officials, bringing together citizens’ groups and government officials to jointly formulate programme plans.
Other recommendations include to create an interactive platform where people will interface with stakeholders, who will provide information; where citizens can demand accountability from elected leaders, and ensure equitable distribution and provision of goods and services.
The Chairman Nigerian Union of Journalists (NUJ) Imo state chapter, Mr Innocent Igwe condemned the absence of effective legislation by the state Assembly members in the State and called for effective representation by office holders.