Political touts, charlatans are Nigeria’s problems – Prof Anya

Sat, Apr 16, 2022
By editor


By Anthony Isibor. 

PROF Anya O. Anya has lamented that the absence of quality and responsible leadership have been the bane of governance in the country. Prof Anya told Realnews in an exclusive interview in Lagos that “The problem we have is that in Nigeria, those who have a track record of what they have done are pushed out by the political touts and charlatans.”

He explained that only a high quality candidate with a sound economic background can inspire confidence in the Nigerian electorates in the coming general elections and save the country from the many challenges bedeviling it.

He called on all the political parties to present only the best candidates for the general elections in 2023.

Responding to questions on the credibility of candidates declaring interest for the top job in the country, he noted that the quality of human beings makes the difference between well-run societies, orderly societies, wealthy societies and the not-so-wealthy and the poor society.

He explained that the country’s problems would be solved the day it becomes clear to Nigerians that the nation needs quality leadership.

According to him, the problems in Nigeria are not peculiar to it. There have been solved in other countries and it’s no longer rocket science. “China that we are dealing with now and everybody is hailing, China went through its own dark days and that is why I am hopeful despite the picture we’ve painted, Nigeria is actually at the darkest period of the night that leads to the dawn. Despite all we are saying, the changes that will reshape Nigeria are already taking place.

“If we are in emergency, we go for our bests. There is no reason, for example why Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala can’t be the president of Nigeria now. There is no reason why Akinwumi Adesina, you know, from the African Development Bank cannot be, and I can name a lot more.

“Take Prof Kingsley Moghalu for example, when he speaks you know he knows what he’s talking about, but the noise of the charlatans drowns everybody else.

“Look at Samuel Iheanyichukwu Ohuabunwa, for example, Ohabunwa was also a former Chairman of the Nigerian Economic Summit Group. He actually led a management buyout of Pfizer in Nigeria and took over the company. He didn’t have the money, it’s the banks, but it was management that made it possible. It’s the private sector that runs economy not government. When you have somebody in governance that has that kind of linkage and insight, you know, that kind of insight in the day-to-day management of the economy, there is hope.

“It is not as if Nigeria lacks quality people, even in the present race, the truth of the matter is that they are people in the race right now who can give the confidence and give Nigeria a new direction.

He, however, argued that the system, the way the political parties are and the kind of value system that has united the political parties and the ordinary people has remained a major setback.

Referring to the rejection of monetary incentive by Anambra women during the recent gubernatorial election, Prof Anya said that it was a clear indication that the people were gaining more confidence.

“Some woman told some of the candidates, “yes we are hungry, but this your money we won’t take it.” You remember it happened.

“That is an indication that when you have quality leadership people have confidence in, they are prepared to sacrifice and forego. In Nigeria right now, among the candidates, they are some people like that,” he said.

Anya noted that Anyim Pius Anyim is another candidate who can arouse that kind of confidence in the electorate.

“When you’re talking about human beings in leadership, when you take a man like Ayim, he had been president of the Senate, he had been secretary to the government of the federation, so he had been at the top of the two levels that run Nigeria.

“That experience cannot be for nothing. But when we were looking for presidents in the past, we didn’t look for such people and you can go on and on…I mean you can see even people that are already here now, they are people that can generate confidence,” he added.


Apr. 16, 2022 @ 05:53 GMT