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CORRUPTION AND NIGERIA’S UNDERDEVELOPMENT: A RELIGIOUS APPROACH
The index of Nigeria’s underdevelopment is her very low per capita income. This is not based on the level of the Nation’s material poverty hence it is a well known fact that Nigeria is wealthier than many of the developed countries of the world in terms of natural, material and even human endowments. Rather, the problem to a great degree, hinges on the level of corruption within the Country’s leadership. The purpose of this paper is not necessarily to state the obvious fact that corruption is one of the greatest banes of Nigeria’s development but to examine the nature of corruption in the Country in the light of religious ethics and; on the basis of the findings, to proffer a number of recommendations towards achieving a lasting solution to the problem of corruption in the Country. The data for this work were collected from literature and internet sources which were subsequently analyzed and descriptively presented in accordance with sociological research methodology. The solution to the problem of corruption in Nigeria is achievable through a holistic program of socio-cultural re-orientation of the citizenry. This program should be organized in the context of the communities of adherents of the two foreign religions in Nigeria – Islam and Christianity. The essence of the program is to implant in the consciences of Nigerian Christians and Muslims the cultural value of the common good with which Africans were identified before the advent of Islamic and Christian religions. It is a well known fact that those who perpetrate and propagate corruption in Nigeria are the educated Christians and Muslims and not the adherents of the traditional religion.
Keywords: Corruption, Capitalism, Materialism, Development and Underdevelopment