We are never ready to fight corruption as a people

Corruption Customs File photo

Thu, 15 Jun 2017 Source: Denis Andaban

Africa sought the solution to its economic problems within the framework of the very economic system which had brought about the crisis in the first place.

As long as we continue to play politics with corruption, it will remain pervasive and further drains the gains of African economies. We live in a system where politicians are accused as the only corrupt people, we live in the system where the very people who are the most corrupt call others as the most corrupt for personal reasons. Corruption is more than what we largely perceive it and until such a time that we look at it with objective minds from the family, society and the job environment we find ourselves, we shall continue to sing like the singing parrots whose melody becomes a noise to the hungry dog which returns from the farm.

If you play with corruption and try to paint others to gain affection, you shall be painted with same colours. No condition is permanent. The convoluted nature of corruption does not require this sort of acrimony and cacophony. What we often forget is that leaders are the direct product of society and if leaders are corrupt, it is not because they are born corrupt but because they are made corrupt by the very people who claim to be angels.

It is particularly catastrophic to limit corruption to politicians when it is extremely conspicuous that corruption is highly endemic in African societies. I can confidently postulate that corruption is among the numerous outmoded cultural practices that need to be uprooted outrightly. It position may contradict the so called textbooks but what is the essence of education if we are not able to supplement existing theories and research works? It is my believe that including corruption to outmoded cultural practices can help us adopt a more suitable pragmatic approach to combating it with unison.

Let me state again and again that corruption and other vices in society is a direct manifestation of inadequate socialisation that society has to impart on its generations. The whole essence of socialisation is letting the individual fit well into society. In finding a more refined way of fighting corruption in the long term, then anti corruption campaign must be given its rightful position in the whole socialisation process. This is the approach I refer to as "bottom top" approach. The bottom top approach will help individuals right from the family level to internalize that corruption is detrimental to society, the only way society can produce a corruption free society with credible leaders to propel development in all aspects of humanity.

I consider all the attempts to fight corruption in recent times as top bottom approach which is the reason why we are fighting the canker with mere rhetorics. There is no sign of positive results as this cancerous inanimate vampire continue to siphon our already scarce resources. The radio and TV talks are rather projecting how hypocritical we are as a nation. We need to be practical anywhere we find ourselves. Of course, corruption has become a riding horse for politicians to use for political race, the very people who are the " ambassadors of poverty". The sad but honest position I hold is that, politicians will always be corrupt as long as the very society that produces such politicians, fails to change its attitude and approach in rebelling against that silent killer.

We live in a country where people continue to make very outrageous demands from leaders. Such undue pressure on leaders make corruption almost irresistible to our leaders. Let's be frank to ourselves. The way we perceive leaders must change. We push them into corruption and later assume a holier than thou attitude, how can we then champion this fight?

May be we are rather seriously affected by mental corruption, another hidden but dangerous component of corruption which we have failed to recognize and talk about. Our inability to accept the truth, be objective, change a poor attitudes, be honest to ourselves among others are direct signs of mental corruption. We ought to also put this issue of mental corruption on the table for comprehensive discussion because any attempt to holistically fight corruption without adopting measures to first tackle mental corruption shall be like a desert mirage. Yes I mean it!!!

All the social vices committed today including the wide spread of murder in our country are traceable to mental corruption, ineptitude and hypocrisy.

That is the complexity of the situation we find ourselves in. Corruption is deeply rooted in our minds. It is networked like a spider web.

Well, I'm not a professor. I'm incapacitated in the use of flamboyant vocabularies or quote numerous academic theories but I think the truth is one which we all know but always pretend. No amount of theories can win the fight against corruption in Africa. It is purely an attitudinal problem.

Columnist: Denis Andaban