The struggle to make Nigeria a disciplined society has been on for a long time. Nigerian Leaders have over the years used different names for the struggle for example: Major-General J.T.U Aguiyi Ironsi called it change in Nigerian attitude, President Shehu Shagari called it Ethical Revolution Major-General Mohammed Buhari called it “War Against Corruption and Indiscipline (WAI) and presently Obasanjo came up with “War Against Corruption”. This shows that the need for curbing indiscipline in Nigeria cannot be over emphasized.
Regrettably, all these attempts have failed to restore ethics and discipline in the Nigerian society. The reason may be that,
1. There have been lack of adequate planning and effective implementation particularly on the part of the bureaucratese who are expected to plan and implement the programme of ethical restoration and curbing indiscipline.
2. Most of the regimes that adopted the various programme were indeed not sincere, they were merely playing up lip service to the measures adopted. There was superficiality.
3. The frequent changes in government led to unnecessary changes in nomenclature and to lack of continuity.
However, all hope is not lost on the part of the government to control indiscipline in our society. The government can do this through the use of coercive instrument for maintaining law and order in any society.
Also, the government should through its National Orientation Agency, inculcate in the citizens the values, habits and orientation which will lead to the establishment of a great self reliant civic society in which justice, duty responsibility, tolerance and commitment to the Nigerian Nation would hold sway.
Citizens Participation In Control Of Indiscipline
1. At the individual level, a person should constantly exhibit that self control, moderation, modesty and respect for legitimate authorities. An individual should maintain high moral attitude, free from corruption and other social vices. Obedience to the law by an individual is necessary to ensure a discipline society.
2. Group Level: Individuals should form social groups and counter indiscipline and moral laxity. Group pressure reinforces conformity to or reformation of group moral. If immoral acts are widely condemned and not tolerated, if prompt, accurate and adequate information is given to the police, if we reject to buy stolen or smuggled good, morally bankrupt people would readjust.
The society should reward honesty, truthfulness and hard work. Society should probe into sudden acquisition of wealth. Communities should not be adoring their sons and daughters with chieftaincy titles on the pretext of their contribution to the development of the community without feeling concerned with the source and mode of the acquisitions of the wealth. Immoral acts could be disapproved through ridicule, laughter, scattering remarks criticism or even ostracism, these could greatly help in ethical restoration and discipline in Nigeria.
3. The Role Of Religion; In many human societies, religion has always been a major tool for enforcement of ethical standards and discipline. Religious bodies such as Christianity, Islam and traditional religion preached and encouraged moral excellence.
The high level of moral decadence in the Nigerian society appears to point to the failure of all these methods of controlling discipline. Then the question is what should be done?
I think the issue is not resign to fate but to put in more sincere efforts and save our nation from total collapse.