THE STRUGGLE FOR THE SOUL OF NIGERIA AS CORRUPTION FIGHTS BACK
A friend once told me that the struggle for the soul of Nigeria is not going to be a tea party because corruption will fight back with lethal weapons that can be found anywhere. He told me that corruption in Nigeria is a hydra-headed monster that will seek to consume anybody who dares to confront it or stands on its way. He insisted that if you fight corruption in Nigeria with a single gun it will fire back with a million AK-47, 5000 armoured tanks, 50,000 grenades, 5000 rocket launchers etc. in addition to a billion blatant lies.
In the past few months in Nigeria, I have seen what my friend was talking about, I have witnessed the deadly fight myself and I have come to the conclusion that corruption as cancer in Nigeria will require cooperation of Nigerians especially the majority who are poor and the deployment of advanced lethal weapons to address the scourge. It is either Nigerians rise up to defeat corruption and join the committee of civilized nations of the world or we surrender to corruption which will eventually sink Nigeria. Nigerians have a choice! Now take a look at these cases of how corruption is tearing every effort to reclaim the soul of Nigeria.
Last week, President Jonathan came to Lagos and spent five days at the Presidential Lounge at Marina Lagos. While in Lagos, the President doled out billions of naira, millions of dollars and pounds sterling to market leaders, local chiefs, town union leaders, actors, carpenters, bricklayers, drivers, barbers, artisans, government workers etc hoping that those who benefited will in return vote for him in the coming presidential elections. It was votes buying trip to Lagos and the Bazaar was enough to guarantee votes for him in the next couple of weeks. Local scammers, 419ers and persons without means of livelihood besieged the President to get their own largesse. The money President Jonathan would have used to create jobs, build roads, build hospitals, universities, provide security, etc are ending up in private pockets because a non-performing and a failed president is fighting to be re-elected into office. But the world is watching how this heavy inducement will translate to votes in the next few weeks.
Femi Fani-Kayode is the Director General President Jonathan's campaign organization. Fani Kayode has a case in court for money laundering. Yesterday, Femi Fani-Kayode appeared in court to answer charges with security personnel comprising of police, army and DSS provided by the state. A man that is standing trial for corruption is heading the President's Campaign Organization and the state providing security to escort FFK to court? Now what can you call this? Corruption is growing wings and it is fighting back ferociously.
Governor Ayo Fayose and Senator Obanikoro are two potential electoral fraudsters whose names featured predominantly in the EkitiGate scandal of June 20 and 21, 2014. The audio tape of what went wrong in Ekiti is now in the public domain but Ayo Fayose is still the governor of Ekiti state while Senator Obanikoro's name has just been forwarded to the senate for confirmation as Minister of Federal Republic. Now are we fighting corruption or are we corrupting our democracy?
AIG Joseph Mbu was the former Commissioner of Police, Rivers state. This man had a running battle with the Governor of Rivers State, Chibuike Amaechi. He fought and abused the Governor on the pages of newspapers, took wars to the governor's office and equally exposed the governor to many dangers. He was eventually removed and posted to Abuja when public outcry became too much. Now Mbu has been promoted to Assistant Inspector General of Police to preside over Zone 2 comprising Lagos and Ogun states. In Lagos, AIG Mbu has not shown that he has turned a new leaf. He is threatening fire and brimstone, promising to kill 20 people if one policeman is killed. He also said a police constable can arrest a Governor if need be. As I write this, AIG Mbu has not been indicted or called to order by the President or the IG of police. Again what will you call this? Corruption is fiercely fighting back to maintain the status quo.
As the presidential elections draws near, the ruling party PDP is standing against anything that will make the elections a free and fair process. PDP wants Professor Jega, the chairman of INEC removed. PDP does not want Card Reader. PDP does not want PVC to be used in the elections. PDP wants TVC. PDP does not want General Buhari to stand for the election. They want him to be disqualified or physically eliminated as they don't want anybody to compete with Jonathan. PDP wants the Army to be deployed during the elections but the constitution leaves that job to the police. PDP and its leaders divide the country in order to remain in power. They tell a million lies to cover one truth. Corruption is fighting back seriously.
Alhaji Asari Dokubo has become the greatest threat to national unity in Nigeria today. He has threatened fire and brimstone to prominent Nigerians from the North and South West if President Jonathan is not re-elected in March 28 presidential elections. He has called prominent Nigerians names, threatening to kill and even seize their oil wells if Jonathan is not returned to power. Asari Dokubo has not been questioned, arrested or detained. He is as free as air, throwing his massive weight around without remorse, exhuming false confidence and Dutch courage. This notorious school dropout now owns a university, owns oil business and other sundry businesses courtesy of the Ijaw president. This is corruption fighting back and hitting hard.
As we struggle to free Nigeria from the clutches of corruption and impunity, this cancer keeps on hitting back at us. But are we going to give up? No, this country is worth dying for just for the sake of our children and generations yet unborn. We must kill corruption or corruption will kill us. The choice is ours.
Written by Joe Igbokwe.