Muhammad Sanusi, former Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), says tribalism and nepotism are the worst form of corruption in Nigeria.
Speaking at a webinar on “sustainability of society”, he said that corruption had a negative impact on society.
Sanusi, a former emir of Kano, also said incompetent leadership has contributed to the degree of corrupt practices in the country.
“Morally and religiously speaking, corruption is a problem. But let us look at it from the angle of economics and we begin to understand that it is not just the corruption itself but the type of corruption,” he said.
“Part of the problem we have is incompetence and that is why I keep saying we must pay attention to merit. We have a system called Federal Character and I believe we should have Nigerians from all over the country in public office, but all those Nigerians must be people that are competent. There must be a merit test; a competence test.
“For me, I think the root of corruption is when we begin to de-emphasise merit, competence and performance and so long as we don’t bring the best in this country to do the job and hold them to account, we won’t go anywhere.
“The worst form of corruption we have in this country is nepotism; when people get into positions by virtue of personal loyalty, friendship and who they know, rather than what they can actually deliver by virtue of their competence for that office. We need people who can deliver for this country, I mean the majority.”
Speaking on reforms that can transform Nigeria for the better within the next 10 years, Sanusi said the constitution should be amended to reduce the cost of governance and promote efficiency.