Saturday, 20 September 2014

Societal Values Key To Good Leadership - Fashola

Lagos State Governor, Mr. Babatunde Fashola SAN, Friday advocated the promotion of societal values as the building blocks for good leadership and good governance saying every society is solely responsible for the type of leadership and governance that it gets.

Addressing participants at the Oriental Hotel, Lekki Expressway, Victoria Island venue of the 2014 Annual Conference on Corporate Governance organized by the Society for Corporate Governance Nigeria with the theme “Leadership and Governance In the Public Sector”, the Governor said leadership is a matter of values.

He said although he has been asked to speak on leadership and governance in the public sector, justice would not be done to the subject if it is limited to that sector alone adding that in order to give it a thorough treatment, the other sector, the Private sector must also be included.

“It seems to me that if any justice is to be done on that subject, it cannot be limited to the Public Sector alone. We must look across board to the other side, the Private Sector also rather than in one sector alone. This is because to me there is a thin dividing line between the Public and the Private sectors and one good or bad leadership in one sector has the potential to breed more good or bad leaders in the other sector”, he said.

According to the Governor, “The Leadership question is really a question of values. It is at the centre of everything; values such as trust, integrity, merit, strength, compassion, courage, justice, fairness and so on and so forth and this must be so because human life and affairs have been organized around representation”.

“From the small to the big corporations, the owners are the large body of shareholders only in little units. But ultimately, who do we see? We see a small unit of men and women representing this large body of shareholders. So the leadership issue has been a representative issue and as it is in the Public Sector so it is in the Private Sector”, he said.

He pointed out that whether it is a monarchy where they cannot vote, or a dictatorship where they can neither vote nor be heard, or democracy where they can vote, complain and can be heard, what the people inherently seek is the assurance that their representative or the one who decides for them, is trustworthy, honest, can keep his word and thinks of the people as much as the thinks of himself.

“We seek to know whether such representative has the strength to bear all of our burdens even if only in a metaphoric sense, and the courage to protect us when we face aggression of oppression. Will that person be compassionate when we have problem? Will he at least listen even if he does not have a solution? Will he be fair even when we know he has his favorites?” the Governor asked.

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