Nigeria’s faulty compensation challenge


The year 2020 has been a chastening one for the world, including Nigeria, where there has been the added worrisome trend of violence, killings, and looting because people are angry with their leaders and suddenly the elite have become vulnerable to this anger.

Since 1960, the country has tried to inculcate an inclusive political system with the regions as the focal points. The central government allowed these regions to develop at their own pace, with their own resources – physical and material. But then came the creation of states, and the republic meant those that had gone ahead had to wait for those lagging.

Thus the entry of the quota system, and we subsequently pushed aside the system of merit.

In 2020, the chickens have finally come home to roost. This is not saying quota system is bad – what I am proposing is that in a system trying to develop, the best opportunities should be allocated to the best resources.

In Nigeria, we have clearly created a system that allows the dregs to rise to the top and the cream filtered away to developed systems where the compensation is commensurate to ability. This is what I want to talk about.

Maybe it is only in Nigeria where you can sleep as a street hustler and wake up as a billionaire. It is not just corruption – that is too simplistic a riposte. As an academic, the question to ask and answer is: what breeds and feeds this monster?

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