More than 100 young people attached to IITA under Nigeria’s National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) scheme, met at the IITA conference center in Ibadan on 28 January 2015 to discuss concepts of corruption and how it affects leadership in agriculture.
Kwame Akuffo-Akoto, IITA Deputy Director General, Corporate Services welcomed participants on behalf of the Director General Dr Nteranya Sanginga. In his keynote address, he said IITA is applying zero tolerance concerning corruption. “Anticorruption has to be one of the pillars of an inclusive growth strategy in the agricultural sector if the poor are to benefit. We all know that the harmful effects of corruption are especially severe on the poor mainly because they mostly rely on the provision of public services, and are least capable of paying the extra costs that are associated with bribery, fraud, and misappropriation.“
IITA applies a whistle blowing policy to encourage people to report suspected cases without fear of victimization or repercussions.
Corruption is undeniably rampant and a principal factor limiting development in Nigeria. In reflection of the bane due to corruption in the leadership systems, Transparency International in its Corruption Perceptions Index for 2014, ranked Nigeria as one of the most corrupt nations in the world.
Mr Bolu Onasanya, CEO and Founder of Bonas Consulting, was the guest speaker. He said bad leadership was the primary impediment to Nigeria’s attaining its desirable standard in governance.
Mr Onasanya also stated that bad governance,leadership and corruption were responsible for the lack of necessary infrastructure in the country, and its current stagnation. He urged the youths to learn to do little things in extraordinary ways as they had great roles to play to phase off corruption.
“Your attitude towards work, events, and the people around you tells a lot about what you will eventually do if given power because power ignites what you have already formed inside of you,” he said.
A presentation by Rasheed Dauda, Senior Internal Auditor; IITA Internal Audit Unit, titled “occupational fraud awareness” buttressed IITA’s efforts in ensuring everything possible to promote a fraud-free working space.