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From the Archive: The Audacity Of A Grass-Cutter

By Remi Oyeyemi

For those who accuse me of never seeing anything good in this administration of President Mohammadu Buhari, here is another excuse for them. That the Secretary to the Federal Government, Lawal Babichir, was suspended did not impress me at all. Not a bit. It is a ruse. It is not for real. It is as insincere as it is deleterious to the feigned objective of a war on corruption.

This suspension of Babichir Lawal is another diversionary tactic from the disgrace that the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission has become. It is an attempt to move the consciousness of Nigerians away from the ignominy of finding N15 billion in a private home and not able to identify the owner. It is an attempt to deceive Nigerians, that this government is still fighting corruption when in truth, that is very incorrect.

The suspension is a ploy to scapegoat the corrupt, arrogant and vacuous brained Secretary to the Federal Government. It is another attempt to divert our concern from the increasing prices of foodstuffs in our markets and the geometric increase of poverty in our land. It is an attempt to fool Nigerians that this All Progressive Congress of a party is still on the side of Nigerians. Yes, it is a ruse to make believe that this administration will not spare corrupt party members.

Well, for those who are not inflicted with amnesia, whether selective or not, this is balderdash. It failed woefully to achieve their intended objective to deceive Nigerians that there is still a war on corruption going on in this country. This move would probably satisfy a lot of frustrated Buharideens and or Buharists fervently seeking for any straw to hold, anything positive at all; something to shroud them from realistically confronting their fatal mistake of voting for a dishonest hypocrite, certificate-less ignoramus, incompetent fraud, racist and contused tribalist as the President of this kind of a country.

But for those Nigerians, who still have their sanity; whose minds are still sound and are genuinely concerned about their country, this is nothing to write home about. It is cosmetic. It is scapegoating. It is shallow. It is insincere. It is another fraud on Nigerians. It failed. It did not work. And it reeks. The suspension of Ambassador Ayo Oke, the Director General of the National Intelligence Agency along with him is just to make the latter an “abobaku” because this is a government in which corrupt people are always defended. One is not impressed. Not a bit.

To get my drift, this is the same SGF, this dexterous grass-cutter, that the same President Buhari defended in a thirteen page memo saying he was not corrupt. President Buhari insisted that Babichir was an honourable man. Despite the outcry of and from Nigerians, President Buhari pretended that all was well with our grass-cutter Secretary who awarded himself an over N252 million naira contract without recourse to the rules and ethics in place.

So, what has now suddenly changed that he is being suspended? What has transpired to change the view and the opinion of President Buhari, who has reinforced his ability to defend thieves since the time he told Nigerians that General Sanni Abacha did not steal our commonwealth? Who is fooling who? Why does his suspension have to come after the “discovery” of the N15 billion in Ikoyi? Has Babichir anything to do with the money? If not why is he being suspended now after these many months?

Babichir himself knew that something ought to be wrong for him to have been suspended. He knew that President Buhari who publicly defended him could not have suspended him. In his audacious arrogance, he had asked the journalists, “Who is the Presidency?” In other words, who could that be that “presidency” bold enough to have suspended him? This was because he was very certain in his belief that President Buhari could not have done it!

But would it be wrong for Babichir to have such expectations? Would it be wrong after the record of President Buhari defending thieves in his government? His audacity was enabled by the trajectory of this administration. It was not the fault of Babichir, regardless of how much we despise or hate him. It is the fault of “The Presidency” that wrote the 13 – page defence of a kelptomaniac and allowed him to remain in the office. It is the fault of a president who defended a corrupt Chief of Army Staff in Yussuf Burratai. It is the fault of a president who covered up his corrupt Minister of Internal Affair, Abdurahman Dambazzau. It is the fault of a President who allowed his own Chief of Staff, Abba Kyari to collect a bribe of half a billion naira and still remain in his seat calling the shots.

In an administration, where money walks up to the airport and take a nap for the EFCC to catch up on it; a country where the owner of a shop could be traced but not the money in the shop and in a country where billions would be found in the private home of a citizen and yet no one knows the owner of the money, why would not a Babichir have the effrontery to ask “Who is the Presidency?’ Why?

For those hailing this decision as a good one, I pity them once again. They are setting themselves up for another bitter disappointment by this confused, corrupt and dishonest administration. The eagerness of the supporters of this hapless administration to praise a shallow decision like this, though understandable because of the reasons provided above, arouses pity rather than anger. It is a sign of a complicated psychological situation that could not be easy to overcome. Human beings are always reluctant to face realities where and when they make a fatal mistake, such as electing the tragedy called Mohammadu Buhari to the presidency of Nigeria.

“In the long history of the world, only a few generations have been granted the role of defending freedom in its hour of maximum danger. I do not shrink from this responsibility – I welcome it.”

- John F. Kennedy, in his Inaugural Address January 20, 1961

Please, follow me on Twitter: @OyeyemiRemi

Disclaimer: "The views/contents expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of Remi Oyeyemi and do not necessarily reflect those of The Nigerian Voice. The Nigerian Voice will not be responsible or liable for any inaccurate or incorrect statements contained in this article."