Punch / Nigeria: The Nobel laureate, Prof. Wole Soyinka, has said anyone who is found guilty in the current Federal Government’s anti-corruption war should be jailed.
He said this on Thursday in Abeokuta at the sideline of activities marking his 82 birthday.
He clocked 82 on Wednesday.
Soyinka had earlier played host to pupils from 82 secondary schools across the state, who participated in the Wole Soyinka Essay Competition titled, ‘Challenges or Not, You Must Love Your Country.’
The Nobel laureate, who had been asked a question around the theme of the 7th edition of the Wole Soyinka International Cultural Exchange programme entitled, ‘Corruption: A battle for the arts; called on all stakeholders across the nation to join hands in the fight against corruption.
The respected scholar said the nation must be returned to its place of honour and dignity where anybody found to be corrupt in the society should be ashamed to walk freely.
He said, “There is only one way for corrupt people; it ends in the prison. It ends in Ibara or Oba (prisons in Abeokuta) or Kirikiri(Lagos prison).
“Yes, it’s a battle for everybody and definitely the arts must be in front as usual. Not just the arts, the theologians, the moralists, the philosophers, the architects, builders, it’s everybody’s work.
“The law, Nigeria Bar Association; everybody is involved, even including you (journalists).”
Soyinka while speaking on the theme of the event enjoined creative writers and artistes to use their work to fight corruption.
The state Governor, Ibikunle Amosun, who was also present at the event, urged the pupils and indeed the nation’s youths to emulate the life of heroes like Prof. Soyinka.
He advised them never to give up on Nigeria in spite of the many challenges facing the nation.
Amosun said, “Just like Prof. Soyinka is doing, you must continue to show love and support for the country irrespective of the challenges facing the nation.”
The governor also expressed joy that many Nigerians appeared to appreciate arts while promising to extend the participation in the subsequent edition of the programme to all pupils across the country and beyond.
The highpoint of the event was the presentation of trophies to Miss Naomi Akinremi of St. Peters College, Olomore, Abeokuta; Miss Adedoyin Sotonwa of Mayflower Secondary School, Ikenne; and Friday Zacheaus of Adeola Odutola College, Ijebu-Ode who came first, second and third respectively, in the essay competition.