Nigerian Politicians More Interested In Women —Utomi

Pat Utomi 2

Prof. Pat Utomi

Nigeria’s Professor of Political Economy and Management, Professor Pat Utomi, has slammed the country’s politicians for undermining the country’s democracy, saying they prefer women than they genuinely desire the development of the nation.

According to Prof. Utomi, the present crop of politicians in the country are more interested in sleeping with women than they are concerned about the country’s growth and progress when compared with the likes of the late Chief Obafemi Awolowo.

Utomi said this while speaking as a guest lecturer at a special parliamentary session held by the Lagos State House of Assembly in commemoration of the second anniversary of the Seventh Assembly and 20 years of the annulment of the June 12, 1993 presidential election won by the late Chief Moshood Abiola.

According to the former presidential candidate on the platform of the African Democratic Congress, ADC, leaders like the late Chief Obafemi Awolowo was able to make positive changes in the country because they surrounded themselves with experts and people who could think.

He said this was different these days as political office holders now only appoint those who could help them get girls and women when the need arises, adding that this was part of the challenges facing the country.

He also castigated political office holders for acting with impunity in the country forgetting that power is transient.

“In some parts of the world, I get a ticket for a train ride and surprisingly, the next person standing close to you to take same train is the Speaker of a parliament. But here, you see the Speaker of a parliament moving with four or five security officers,” he lamented.

He appealed to political leaders to re-trace their steps.

Also in his lecture, the Dean of the Faculty of Social Sciences, Lagos State University, Professor Abubakar Momoh, blamed politicians for heating up the polity through what he described as political rhetoric.

He called Nigeria a crippled giant and lamented that the country was not thinking beyond the crude oil it exports.

According to him, if Nigeria stops exporting crude oil, it will become poorer than Togo which earns its revenue from various export policies.

“We are suffering the illusion of oil. We have not yet arrived,” he lamented further quoting some ministers in the President Goodluck Jonathan cabinet as saying that the country’s Vision 20-20 of becoming a leading global economy is no longer realistic.

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He also lamented the level of poverty giving the politicians the opportunity to continue to deceive people with promises that are not realisable.

He slammed political leaders for deliberately destroying the country’s educational sector, challenging them to send their children to public schools if they felt he was telling lies.

As a result of this, he said, tertiary institutions in the country now produce the kinds of graduates which the market requires and not ones that could easily better the society.

The scholar also described the banking sector of the country as a challenged institution, saying their practices and policies have not helped businesses.

According to him, these banks now concentrate on giving short term loans with very high interest rates to the extent that most manufacturing houses have now been converted into churches.

“Politicians are the ones that have destroyed our schools,” he declared, adding that former President Olusegun Obasanjo and Shehu Musa Yar’Adua sent their children to public schools when they led the country in the 1970s.

He noted that a global statistics had put the number of Nigeria’s unemployed at 73 million while a total of 10.5 million are out of school. He noted that the Universal Basic Education Programme had become a drain pipe riddled with corruption.

Prof. Momoh lamented that at this stage of the country’s existence, the government cannot provide potable water or meet the little demands of the poor masses.

While eulogising former Governor Lateef Jakande for his development of Lagos State during his tenure, he said it was shameful that in Lagos the water being provided for the residents of the state was a World Bank project, adding that it had not even reached the people.

He said this was the reason for the proliferation of boreholes which is not also safe. “Close to 35 percent of ailments in Nigeria are water borne,” he said while asking the government to cut the cost of governance, reform the Nigerian Police and act on the NEITI report on the crude oil management.

—Eromosele Ebhomele

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