The Bishop of the Anglican Diocese of Igbomina West, Kwara State, The Most Reverend Olajide Adebayo lamented that Nigeria is facing myriad challenges ranging from security to economy due to lack of integrity leaders of the country.
The cleric explained that the country would struggle to experience growth, development and overcome socio-economic challenges if the rulers continued to pursue their selfish interests above those of citizens and society.
Bishop Adebayo spoke in Ado-Ekiti, the capital of Ekiti State, during the 80th anniversary reception held in honor of a former President of the Association of Customary Court Judges, Pa Akinwande Adeosun, adding that the celebrant distinguished himself as a man of integrity, full of character and help of humanity.
The delighted celebrant who thanked God for the grace of taking this step said he would continue to dedicate his life to the service of humanity without compromising his integrity.
Speaking on the theme “Integrity: the cornerstone of building a prosperous nation”, the Anglican Bishop said that the absence of men of proven integrity and character in the corridor of power contributes to the increase in the level of poverty in the country.
According to him, “We are here today to celebrate a man of proven integrity and character whom we are very proud to associate. Let me quickly say that today’s topic is difficult because we live in a country where integrity has been removed from our dictionary; integrity is lost because no one thinks about society.
“Let me inform the guests here today that there can be no prosperous nation without men of integrity and character in positions of authority. We have lost virtually everything today in the country only because character and integrity are lacking and when these are lacking poverty becomes imminent, no wonder there is poverty of ideas as knowledge.
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“As long as people sacrifice prosperity for integrity, there will be no progress.”
On his part, the pioneering managing director of Shell Nigeria Exploration and Production Company, Dr. Olufemi Lalude, expressed his sadness that the foundation of the country is in crisis due to a lack of integrity and honesty in its objectives, calling on citizens to approach the general 2023 election with the sole purpose of changing the narratives by voting people of impeccable character.
Lalude, while praising the celebrant’s exploits and contributions to humanity, added that a society with people of proven integrity in leadership positions will experience socio-economic growth and development.
“Integrity remains the cornerstone of growth, someone with integrity will make a promise and keep it. It is essential in everything we do if we want a successful society, integrity is the soul of any nation and let me add that the elections next year will show whether the foundations of this country will be solidified,” he said.
Professor of Political Science at Ekiti Ado-Ekiti State University, Femi Omotoso said the political class has failed the nation with its actions and inactions, noting that until society rewards and will not encourage people of integrity, the nation will not know the need for change.