Okowa Gives Panacea for Better Nigeria… Calls for Restructuring, Name Change

A Nigeria, based on justice and fair-play for all, irrespective of ethnicity, religion, gender or region is the only sustainable way to ensure peace, unity and progress. Renowned Professor of Economics, Willie Okowa, made the observation while delivering the 25th Valedictory Lecture at Ebitimi Banigo Auditorium on Tuesday, December 6, 2022.

Speaking on the topic “Theft as a National Creed: The Burdens of a Phariseed Society”, Okowa, who is of the Department of Economics, Faculty of Social Sciences, also called for restructuring and changing the country's name from Federal Republic of Nigeria. “We need to change our country's name to one that evokes a sense of oneness and unity in our consciousness. The new name hereby suggested is Black African Republics of Nigeria,” he said.

Okowa, who made an allusion to the Pharisees in the Holy Bible, pointed out that “Nigeria is a society that has been completely swallowed by Pharisee values and Pharisee attitudes. Stealing, lying, lawlessness, gossiping, hypocrisy have become our sociocultural normalities.”

Explaining that “Our medicine may be very bitter indeed, but then its purpose is to cure the Nigerian disease,” Okowa noted that his lecture ruthlessly condemned the Hobbesian state Nigeria has been reduced to and prescribed the way forward to a Nigeria that is a black man's glory, a blessing to the black race and to the human race.

“It has been said that our problem isthat of leadership. But then, is our leadership problem not a symptom of a larger social malady. If day in, day out, we produce incompetent, tribalistic and thieving leaders in all strata of the society, is it not reasonable to argue that thieving, tribalism and incompetence are dominant propensities in our society?” he queried.

Citing “Abdulistic Capitalism”, a work he published in 1994, the Valedictory Lecturer recalled that he made it clear that the only way Nigeria may be saved from the Somalian and Yugoslavian tragedies is a political economy restructuring of the country's political
system, emphasizing that the fundamental element in the proposed restructuring is complete resource control.

“Unless were structure and force/compel everybody to go back to work, nothing will work,” he said, explaining that, that was why he had been advocating for restructuring of Nigeria's political economy for the last 30 years or so. “Nobody can save Nigeria unless we restructure. I just hope it is not too late now,” he added.

In his remarks, Vice Chancellor, Professor Owunari Georgewill, who spoke through the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Administration), Professor Clifford Ofurum, c o m m e n d e d Professor Okowa for his services to the University. “Today is a very important event in the annals of the University. It is a day one of the finest Professors is preparing to bow out. I am not surprised at the topic he chose. Professor Okowa has been fighting corruption all his life''.

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