‘Electing, appointing incompetent persons worse than corruption’
A former National Legal Adviser of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Dr. Muiz Banire has said appointing or electing incompetent persons into public offices does more damage and set back the country’s growth and development more than corruption.
Banire, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), speaking during an online conference titled: COVID-19 Pandemic and the Necessity of Comprehensive Social Security in Nigeria: Focusing on the Health Sector organised by HEDA Resource Centre, said it is paramount for Nigeria to begin to pay as much attention to the issue of incompetence as it pays to corruption.
He said based on his experience in public service, the incompetence of public office holders is as dangerous to the growth and development of the nation like corruption, but unfortunately the country seems to place more emphasis on fighting corruption than addressing the issue of incompetent officers.
Another speaker, Professor Gbenga Odutan, who participated from the U.K, spoke on Health Financing, Corruption and Service Delivery. Agreeing with Banire’s postulation, Odutan said it would be very difficult, if not impossible for any society to fight corruption without competence or competent people.
International Human Rights lawyer, Professor Joy Ezeilo tasked government to begin in earnest to plan ahead of the economic recession the COVID-19 pandemic will create, just as he urged lawmakers to take advantage of the pandemic to address the crisis of social securities.
Dr. Wale Okediran observed that despite the success made in the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) in the formal sector, there is need to carry the informal sector along.
A Human Rights activist, John Odah, noted that COVID-19 has actually exposed the deplorable state of Nigeria’s health system.
Dr. Aminu Garba flayed the current composition of President Muhammadu Buhari’s Presidential Task Force on COVID-19, saying it was a pure composition of government employees, which is not giving room for adequate accountability or criticism.
The coordinator, Professor Ayodele Atsenuwa said Nigeria needed to use the COVID-19 experience to put in place comprehensive social securities for citizens.
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