2023: Ex-Speaker, Bankole harps on responsible leadership

A former Speaker House of Representatives, Mr Oladimeji Bankole, has called for less emphasis on the age of the leaders to pilot the affairs of the country.

Bankole made the call on Saturday on the sidelines of the 16th Annual Ramadan Lecture in Kaduna.

The event, titled: ‘Social Media: Effects on morality,’ was organised by the Nigerian Television Authority (NTA), Federal Radio Corporation of Nigeria (FRCN) and Voice of Nigeria.

The former speaker, who was the special guest of honour at the annual event,  urged Nigerians to continue taking part in the electoral process to elect responsible leaders.

Bankole noted that it was more important for the country to be led by leaders who were genuinely interested and committed to the Nigerian project, than to debate over the age of the candidates.

He said morality and sense of responsibility often start from the home, adding that there was the need to get things in the right order.

“It’s always from home. Sense of morality can be treated from primary schools, secondary schools – formative years of young people. Parents must get more involved in moulding the character of their children,” he said.

Bankole said social media was not the cause of Nigeria’s problems, but rather a consequence of the country’s challenges.

“Without a proper diagnosis, we cannot begin to proffer solutions to Nigeria’s problems.

“At this point in our history, I will advice that we should not confuse causes and effects, symptoms and consequences,” he said

Bankole said that Islam is an simple religion that has been solving societal problems, calling on Nigerians to go back to the Quran for guidance.

He said issues should be placed in their right perspectives, noting that, “the problem here is that we are putting number five as number one and we expect peace to reign.”

Earlier, the Registrar of the Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB) Prof. Ishaq Oloyede, decried the indiscriminate use of social media.

Oloyede, who was the guest speaker at the event, was represented by a former Administrative Secretary of Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs, Alhaji Isah Okonkwo.

Oloyede noted that the indiscriminate use of social media had contributed to corruption and the crime rate in the country.

“In the past, it was shameful to be associated with any corrupt incident, as communities could easily disown their own for merely being indicted for corrupt practices.

“Today, wealth is being celebrated on social media in a way that demonstrates acceptability of wealth irrespective of its source,” he said.

He said this, in effect, had led to students indulging in all sorts of fraudulent and occultic acts just to show off or celebrate on social media.

“Celebrating ill-gotten wealth on social media sends the wrong message to the younger ones that they could do anything to get rich.

“Similarly, some of the movie scenes watched by these young impressionable youths is responsible for the increase in the ritual killings being experienced today,” he said.

In his remarks,  Islamic Scholar, Sheikh Ahmad Gumi, said that in spite of its negative effects, social media is encouraged for social interaction.

“So, what is important is that we should drop the bad aspect of social media and embrace the good side,” he said. 

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