Former Minister of Education and activist, Dr Oby Ezekwesili, believes Nigeria can only get rid of corruption when the people are ready to put intense pressure on the government to implement systems to get rid of it.

While speaking during a panel discussion on the BBC's "Global Questions" which took place in Lagos on Wednesday, July 4, 2018, the former minister described corruption as a cancer to the nation's development.

She said widespread corruption in the country has contributed massively to holding it back, a situation she said Nigerians can reverse by waking up to their responsibilities as concerned citizens.

She said, "There will come a time when the people of Nigeria will recognise themselves and say, 'This cannot continue to be our reality'.

"Corruption is cancerous; the cancer of corruption is part of why this country has been held back. So what are we going to do about it?

"We're going to learn the lesson of places like Cancún which was systemically corrupt until the institutions responded to the necessity for intensive reforms; until the government understood that it had the pressure of society to tackle corruption; until the sanctions and the systems that made it difficult for people to get away with bad behaviour and enjoy the reward of bad behaviour were put in place. We can actually do the same thing."

The former minister also called the federal government's failure to deal with killings in the country as a "leadership failure"that should not be allowed to continue unchecked.