• Saturday, June 22, 2024
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The challenge of democracy for Nigeria is not having strong institutions – Darren Walker

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Darren Walker, the president of the Ford Foundation, said the challenge to democracy in Nigeria is not having strong institutions.

Walker stated this in an interview on Arise News on Wednesday, adding that “it is challenging to create a coherent sense of alignment and shared vision because of race, ethnicity, gender, etc.”

He said that one of the things Ford Foundation has done in Nigeria over the years is support for civil societies, adding strong civil societies will enable strong democracy.

The President Ford Foundation continued that inequality is very harmful to a vibrant democracy, adding that inequality kills hope, which is the oxygen for democracy.

“When a society, when the people are hopeless, democracy is in trouble,” he said.

Walker added that inequality is not peculiar to Nigeria alone, saying that it has grown in the United States, India, Turkey, Hungary, Brazil, and many parts of the world.

Also speaking during the interview, Chi Chi Aniagolu Okoye, regional director, of Ford Foundation, said that the foundation has been supporting Nigeria since its inception in the 1950s.

“The first decade was dedicated to building the workforce for the new country at the time, focusing on education, fellowships, scholarships, etc,” she said.

Okoye said that the foundation is now focusing on gender-based violence, climate change and other developmental issues.