Nigeria’s former President, Olusegun Obasanjo, spoke on Wednesday at the opening ceremony of the First International Conference of the African Studies Association of Africa, which took place in Ibadan, Oyo State.
He decried the corruption in Nigeria during his speech and urged African nations to wage war against it.
At the event hosted by the Institute of African Studies, University of Ibadan, the former president said corruption was Africa’s big problem which is eroding moral values.
“Today, the corrupt is venerated. The impression that Africans have a cultural disposition to be corrupt is a travesty of the truth. We are hospitable but hospitality is different from corruption,” he said.
As an example, he cited the case of Enugu where a former governor obtained a loan and didn’t deliver on what he promised. He said the state government obtained a loan of $8 million to establish a Carpet Industry, but that the money was spent without the ground for the project ever cleared, lamenting that the money was part of the debt the nation had to pay. The governor of Enugu at the time Obasanjo was president was Chimaraoke Nnamani, who recently won at the election tribunal against Sen. Gilbert Nnaji, even though the latter is appealing.
The theme of the three-day conference is “African Studies in the Twenty-First Century: Past, Present and Future.” The conference was attended by scholars and academics drawn across Africa.