Food for thought: Workers or corruption?

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By Abdulmumin Giwa

A lot of noise is being made that the civil service is bloated and it has to be cut to size to allow for enough resources to be used on the public. Yes this could be in an ideal situation and not in the current Nigerian context.

Reputable research bodies have placed Nigeria’s position high among nations that engage in excessive corruption by government. It is such that those in power steal almost two-third of the resources or divert them to friends and family or other ways that are not in public interest. This is known to all and some corrupt practices have since been accepted as normal without questions. They over bloat contracts to squeeze funds out of public purse. We have all heard how over N200 million is used for grass cutting by government and how governors and others steal billions, we are all aware of these. This is not even talking about the funds wasted in maintaining the executive offices, their convoy, feeding, personal assistants, advisers and a host of others.

Now here are politicians looking for money to finish some infrastructure but are not willing to give up what they are stealing and wasting but rather they choose to lay off workers to get enough funds. This is in a country that is marred by insecurity and criminality that is strongly supported by unemployment and poor government approach to the solution.

In a situation like this, is it corruption that should stop or workers that should be dismissed? Dismissing workers will only create more idleness and lead to more crimes and insecurity.

If there should be anything those in power should first stop, it is to stop stealing two-third of the government resources to enrich themselves and not to lay off the poor masses from their jobs.

If they stop stealing there will be enough finds to not only to do good infrastructure but to also provide employment to more people. Because in an ideal situation, not all are interested in the jobs they are doing but are only managing to keep body and soul together. A lot of such employed people would willingly and preferably convert to private sector and more development will be achieved in the country. But not with the excessive looting.

How can you be stealing government funds and still be saying you don’t have enough to work with and resolve to dismiss poor masses? Is very stupid!

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