The vice presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party in the February presidential election, Mr. Peter Obi, says Nigeria has been criminalised.
Obi spoke on Friday as a guest speaker at the maiden convocation of Chrisland University, Abeokuta, Ogun State.
The former Governor of Anambra State, who spoke on the theme, ‘Creativity, innovation and enterpreneuship: A critical intersection for economic development in Africa’, urged the coming generation not to toe the line of the previous leaders in the country.
Obi, who assessed the economy of the country, submitted that the failure of the leaders in the country to invest in education and enterpreneuship brought the country’s economy to its present situation.
He lamented that past leaders depended on oil economy, saying that development had led to the poor economic status of the country.
Obi further said the challenges confronting the country were many, noting that the country had been criminalised.
He said, “The truth is that in Nigeria, the problem is over 75 per cent. The country has been criminalised. Quote me, I am talking from experience of somebody who had served – I was there for eight years.
“What I found in Nigerians and your parents here including me is that you can hardly see anybody who will tell you something is wrong.
“Everybody calls you His Excellency, that since you came, things have changed, even when you know that nothing has changed.
“It is just that we have a government that has criminalised the society and people celebrate criminality. So, nobody could say to them, stop.
“Those who steal, if they come to church they will give them front seats, so, why would they not steal? They are the ones who are given chieftaincy titles, they are the ones who get titles in the world. So, we need to change all that.”
While speaking on the foreign loan obtained by the Federal Government, Obi claimed that the debts obtained had not been properly used.
In her remarks, Vice Chancellor of the university, Prof Chinedum Babalola, begged the Federal Government to extend the funding facilities of Tertiary Education Trust Fund to private universities.