Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo on Sunday described trust as the bedrock of the nation’s economic development.
Osinbajo, according to a statement issued by his Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Laolu Akande, stated this in a keynote address he delivered at the Nigeria Leadership Initiative webinar series.
He said the nation’s entire credit system was based on trust.
The vice-president said the country was in dire need of a value system that promotes national development, adding that such value system must engender unity and a shared vision.
Osinbajo said: “Economic growth rests upon the substructure of values. The basis of the entire credit system as we know it, is trust. Indeed, the word credit is derived from the Latin word ‘credere’ —to believe or to trust. For a credit facility to be extended to a person, trust is placed in the borrower and his or her willingness and ability to repay.
“When we say that there is a credit crunch, we are referring to a lack of trust. This has significant implications for the economy. Banks cannot lend to people when fraud is widespread, and enterprise and industry cannot flourish without credit.
“Financial institutions may also be reluctant to lend because they cannot trust that the government will remain consistent with regulatory policies. For the same reason, investors may be discouraged from investing. When we speak of investor confidence, we are merely describing the level of trust investors are willing to place in an environment.
“Citizens who do not trust that their taxes will not be embezzled due to official corruption are unlikely to see any value in paying their taxes. If people stop trusting the media, they are more likely to fall prey to merchants of fake news which can have a destabilizing effect on a nation.
“Where everyone is self-seeking, there can be no trust and without trust, it is impossible to sustain an open society. The significance of trust for the workings of the economy and society are far-reaching.”
“For purposes of national unity, for example, we must accept that unity and peace are important outcomes, but the condition predicate for both unity and peace is justice (both legal and social justice). So, in our context, justice includes the notions of fairness, equity, and equality.”
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