Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo has spoken up on the only way Nigeria’s desire and pursuit of economic growth and sustainable development can be best achieved within the country.
Speaking at the Nigeria Leadership Initiative (NLI) webinar series themed: “A National Conversation on Rebuilding our National Values System”.
“Meritocracy is crucial in an economically viable value system because it rewards talent and enterprise. And it is talent and enterprise that would drive sustainable growth,” Mr Osinbajo affirmed.
Stressing the point about the importance of merit to sustainable growth, the vice president said, “Economic growth rests upon the substructure of values. The basis of the entire credit system as we know it, is trust. Indeed, the word credit is derived from the Latin word “credere” —to believe or to trust. For a credit facility to be extended to a person, trust is placed in the borrower and his or her willingness and ability to repay.
“When we say that there is a credit crunch, we are referring to a lack of trust. This has significant implications for the economy. Banks cannot lend to people when fraud is widespread, and enterprise and industry cannot flourish without credit.”
Explaining further, Mr Osinbajo said “financial institutions may also be reluctant to lend because they cannot trust that the government will remain consistent with regulatory policies. For the same reason, investors may be discouraged from investing. When we speak of investor confidence, we are merely describing the level of trust investors are willing to place in an environment.
“Citizens who do not trust that their taxes will be embezzled due to official corruption are unlikely to see any value in paying their taxes. If people stop trusting the media, they are more likely to fall prey to merchants of fake news which can have a destabilizing effect on a nation. Where everyone is self-seeking there can be no trust and without trust, it is impossible to sustain an open society. The significance of trust for the workings of the economy and society are far-reaching.”
In a speech that clearly proposes that merit can also be worked into the implementation of the Federal Character Principles, the vice president submitted that stakeholders must focus their attention on merit as a crucial factor for society’s economic survival, social justice and in having an economically viable value system.
According to him, “Meritocracy is crucial as a value in and of itself. The moment that we depart from meritocracy, we cannot tie our value system to development in any meaningful way. Our public institutions must be equipped to provide opportunities, regardless of tribe, religion or gender, but the primary criterion must be merit.”
Source: Naija News