CHAPTER ONE: INTRODUCTION
1.1 Background to the Study
One of the greatest threats to Education, social, economic, and political development of any nation is corruption. Therefore, the challenges of corruption remain a major devastating issue facing Nigeria since the colonial period, although, this phenomena has become a cankerworm that has eaten deep into the fabrics of our system. The United Nations Global Programme against Corruption (GPAC) defines it as “abuse of power for private gain”. The Transparency International has chosen a clear and focused definition of the term as “the abuse of entrusted power for private gain”. It can also be defined as a pervasion or change from the general accepted rules or laws for selfish gain (Farida, 2010).
The World Bank however defines corruption as: The abuse of office for private gains. Public office is abused for private gain when an official accepts, solicits or extorts a bribe. It is also abused when private agents actively offer bribes to circumvent public offices and processes for competitive advantages or profit. In view of the above, Agbu (2003) observed that public office can be abused for personal benefit even if no bribery occurs, through patronage and nepotism, the theft of state or the diversion of state resources. Given this development therefore, corruption connotes any behavior that deviates from an established norm with regards to public trust. It also means theft of public trust whether the person concerned is elected selected, nominated or appointed and it does not matter whether the person affected holds office or not since anybody can be corrupt. Corruption is no doubt a global phenomenon that has threatened and still continues to threaten the developmental efforts in many nations.
In Nigeria, eradicating corruption has been a major concern of successive government in the country because of its negative impact on good governance and effective service delivery. According to Adamu (2007) corruption exists in one form or the other in all societies. The major difference in the case of Nigeria is the extent of its pervasiveness and its implication for good governance, its value system and political culture in particular. To him (Adamu, 2007), an average Nigerians has accepted corruption as inevitable and uncontrollable believing that the society as a whole is corrupt and beyond remedy.
Additionally, Nigerians believed that nothing meaningful will ever get done to correct or punish those perpetuating these crimes. At the inception of the fourth democratic era in 1999, corruption had reached such an alarming rate and had eaten deep into every facet of Nigerian society. It has indeed become an integral part of the administrative, political, socio-economic and cultural system as well as a way of life of the citizenry. The situation in the Nigeria Public Service was succinctly described thus: Government officials had become progressively indifferent to propriety of conduct and showed little commitment to promoting the general welfare of the people and the public goods. Government and all its agencies had become thoroughly corrupt and reckless. Members of the public have had to bribe their way through in ministries and parastatals to get attention and government had to bribe another government agency to obtain the release of their statutory allocation of funds (Obasanjo, 1999).
Despite the structures (reforms) put in place to combat the malaise or at least reduce it to its barest minimum, corruption still continues to be endemic, particularly in the Nigerian public service with its attendant implications for effective service delivery and welfare of the people. The effect of this is that majority of Nigerians are yet to enjoy the dividends of democracy and good governance. The question is what is the magnitude and dimension of corruption in Nigeria, specifically in the Nigeria Public service? Does it have any implication for effective service delivery? The main objective of this study is to examine the magnitude of corruption in the public service and its attendant implications. Specifically, the paper examines the dimensions and magnitude of corruption in the Nigeria public service and its implications for effective delivery and the welfare of the people.
1 .2 Statement of the Problem
Despite the effort made by the government and its agencies like Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and Independent Corruption Practices and other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) in curbing or eradicating corruption in our areas, the record shows that the impact of corruption is still prevalent in our societies. The level of corruption is so much that it has led to widely talk about fallen standard of education and social services to the people in Nigeria especially people, Abak Local Government Area in particular and Akwa Ibom at large Development definitely occurs in the society where the level of corruption is low. But many people in the rural communities lack basic socials services,
Nigeria, despite her rich natural resources of oil and non-oil resources and boasting of been African third largest economy, is still being plagued by poverty as over 54% of her populace lives on less than a $1 daily. As her rich, wealth and GDP could not transmit to sustainable living condition and the cause of this paradox had been indented so many times as a result of corruption. This owns to the fact the purposive action being taken cannot completely eradicate corruption but only reduce very little, which is why the researcher deems it necessary to carry out a study of this magnitude. It is against this background that this study seeks to investigate the impact of corruption in the provision of facilities in secondary schools in Abak Local Government Area of Akwa lbom State.