CHAPTER ONE INTRODUCTION
1.1 Background to the Study
Many forms of governance, institutions and bureaucracies that were transferred to a majority of African states at independence were, for the most part, ill-adapted to the African realities and the continent’s development challenges (Afegbua, 2012). Therefore, one of the major challenges that have faced African states and particularly Nigeria since the advent of political independence has been that of establishing and sustaining appropriate governance, institutions and practices that would engender democratic leadership and promote sustainable development at the grassroots levels and beyond (Yimer, 2015). In Africa, in general, leadership and governance have been identied as major problems militating against growth and development in all sectors of the economy and the grassroots levels not being exempted. The need for leadership in any nation or state is very essential. This is because nations or states exist with stated ideologies and leaders are ‘machineries’ for achieving such stated ideologies.
Organisational goals will remain unrealistic without a ‘designated individual’ known as leader. As a result, leaders are ‘central instruments’ to any organization. Success or failure of an organization lies in the hand of a leader ( Lamidi & Adeyeye, 2013). One of the major challenges facing Nigeria is how to create a context of stable political and socio-economic environment for policies and programmes to be implemented. The issue of getting the right leadership to ght corruption and propel good governance has been a recurring decimal in Nigeria and Africa in general. Once this enabling environment is created, it becomes easy for the people to confront and resolve challenges facing them by using resources within their environment to create a condition of life where each stage is progressively better than the preceding one. However, this is not the case in Nigeria due to corruption and bad governance. Good governance encapsulates transparency, accountability, freedom of choice and liberty for the people to pursue their individual and corporate interest.
Indeed, at the core of Africa’s underdeveloped status are corruption and leadership decit ( Anazodo, Igbokwe-Ibeto & Nkah, 2015:42). Leadership and good governance are crucial to realizing any giant stride taken in pursuit of development anywhere in the world, Nigeria is not an exception. The reverberation eects of the failure of leadership, corruption and bad governance are visible and being felt down to the grassroots levels of the Nigerian society. Unemployment and employment for cash, insecurity, crude oil thefts, crisis in education, dearth of infrastructures such as health services, transportation, accommodation, communication, medication etc are all common features in Nigeria. It is an irony that of all oil producing nations, Nigeria is the only country with the history of crude oil thefts ( Anazodo, Igbokwe-Ibeto & Nkah, 2015:43) .
THE GRASSROOTS OF LEADERSHIP AND GOOD GOVERNANCE IN NIGERIA