Obi, Duke, youths call for transparency and accountability in governance
Former governors of Anambra, Peter Obi, and Cross River, Donald Duke as well as youths have called for transparency and accountability in governance across all levels.
They spoke at the Nigeria Symposium for Young and Emerging Leaders, which took place yesterday at the Terra Kulture, Victoria Island, Lagos.
Themed “Open Governance: Improving Transparency and Accountability in Government”, the event brought together leaders in politics, business, media, and more to discuss issues and challenges of open government and active citizenship.
Obi while speaking, decried the cost of governance in Nigeria, stating that the country needed a broad, comprehensive approach to address issues of budget inflation and corruption among public servants.
“The present cost of governance in Nigeria is totally unacceptable. Expenses of running the government in Nigeria is at the detriment of the citizens. Most Nigerians have no knowledge of the chairman of their local government, so how do you expect to keep them accountable?
“Government should publish each item they want to buy for the citizens to see to compare the prices,” he said.
Co-founder of BudgIT, Seun Onigbinde, while affirming that citizens needed to demand answers from elected officials at all levels said: “Our leaders are yet to see Nigerians as people that need transformation. The realities of 2019 election will not be different from that of 2015.
“Nigerians need to demand for transparency all the time. The National Assembly spends 10 times the budget of other federal institutions in the country. Government serves the people, not the other way round. Nigeria is our collective responsibility, and as true citizens of this country, we need to find our voices,” Onigbinde said.
Speakers at the event include former Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Social Media Director, Deji Adeyanju; Demola Olarewaju, political strategist/analyst, and Japheth Omojuwa, founder and chief strategist, Alpha Reach.
Others are youth advocates Dayo Israel, Rinsola Abiola, Ayo Thompson, award-winning TV/Radio presenter; Seun Okinbaloye, political correspondent, Channels TV and Arit Okpo.