MRS WAZIRI, WHY MANY NIGERIAN CIVIL SERVANTS WORK FOR THEMSELVES RATHER THAN THE NATION
In a few days the EFCC is reportedly set to aggressively put into practice Section 7 (b) of the EFCC Establishment Act which allows for “investigations to be conducted into the properties of any person if it appears to the Commission that a person’s life style and extent of the properties are not justified by his source of income”. Madam, at the time of this writing a significant number of Nigerians live in poverty, and this you know as there are many hard working rank and file men and women in the police force where the salary scale remain markedly disgraceful for the constables especially. Madam, if truth be told a high number of Nigerians still live below one dollar on a daily basis.
As to those that work for public agencies, the salary structure is generally not as competitive as the pay system in the private sector, yet we see an alarming number of Nigerian officials both current and past in the public sector or agencies living the lives of millionaires and billionaires, as evidenced by your own recent words. Madam, from the point of criminological and social analysis, you will agree that poverty and other various forms of socio-economic challenges abound in the rural areas of Nigeria, and ironically the faces of stolen wealth by dishonest Civil or public servants reveal themselves through different images and ways.
Amidst residencies in the rural communities, one sees mansions, and many of them are owned by current or out of service government workers. While it is quite known that there is a vacuum of adequate transportation in rural areas, with bikes being in frequency, it is not unusual to see highly expensive cars in some of these villages. At night, many rural residents lit up their candles and lamps while the government crooks, use stolen public money and waste it on huge and noisy generators. The provision of adequate roads remains void in many rural areas but for the unusually rich public servant, he or she build roads and name the streets after their personal names. In the last five to ten years, some dishonest civil servants have become sudden and unofficial bachelors as they lodge stolen monies in foreign banks buy impressive homes with their wives or husbands as well as their children living in them. Many of them periodically travel to the U. S. A; U. K, Canada, and the Caribbean on the pretext for a course or vacation, in order to renew their mates reproductive organ, and also for the purpose of given a new birth outside Nigeria’s decaying public health systems.
Among the public servants who live in high-level population areas and cities within Nigeria, they waste stolen monies on newly built houses, and buy public transportations, and rent them out for more money while they live in residences supported by government allowances. Madam, you should dig deep fully into this matter by working closely with the Nigerian immigration office, and all foreign embassies, in Nigeria as they will be very helpful in regards to revealing the true identities of those dishonest public servants who send their pregnant wives abroad just to deliver their babies, so as to make them dual or “oyibo” children. These public servants as part of their dishonest backgrounds usually have multiple official addresses, identities or pictures, in Nigerian banks where they are shielded by corrupt bank officials.
Madam, for those dishonest civil servants that the EFCC is able to successfully prosecute and brought to justice, as part of their punishment persuade the magistrates or judges to send some of them to provide professional or technical services to areas like the back of the Sheraton Hotel, Lagos where not less than 500 homeless people reportedly reside with some living on forty kobo daily. Madam, many thank you, and we urge you to continue to make this issue of corruption fight a social and spiritual responsibility of yours, and history will remember how best you tried to clean up Nigeria for the average citizen.
John Egbeazien Oshodi, Ph.D , DABPS, FACFE, is a Forensic/Clinical Psychologist and an Assistant Professor of Psychology and Behavioral Science, North Campus, Broward College, Coconut Creek, [email protected]