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BANKOLEISN, THE NATIONAL ASSEMBLY AND THE PUBLIC THIEVES

FORMER SPEAKER DIMEJI BANKOLE PRESIDING OVER A SESSION AT THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES.
FORMER SPEAKER DIMEJI BANKOLE PRESIDING OVER A SESSION AT THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES.
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Very quickly, Bankoleism is a term used to describe a man that adorns himself in white attires all the time, yet engages in activities that are at best black, such as conniving with bank officials to borrow, collect, use, misuse, manage or mismanage by sharing with fellow colleagues while majority of citizenry suffer.

Bankoleism, has different phases, it all depends on what side of the divide one chooses and you will be surprised about what you see. Bankoleism is when the Inspector General of the Nigerian Police decides o pay you a social visit on the eve of your arrest, abduction or invitation to a sister organization to answer questions regarding money that has already be spent, chopped and whacked.

It also is a state in which one falls from grace to graceful grass because N10b is not just ten naira.

While the larger society listens to the Bankoles and his sweet sounding grammar, they take loans and share amongst themselves in millions and billions. In Bankoleism its either you are judged on the pages of newspapers or your running mouth could put you into trouble, it all depends on whose shoes you take, whose foot you step on,

It’s funny how the tables turn, one moment, former speaker Dimeji Bankole was telling the world how EFCC was not worth a dollar and next minute, he is going to be doing WAEC questions for hours nay days in the same EFCC.

The Bankoles of these nation, its political class and people are many, they include but are not limited the Patricia Ettehs, impeached for inflated contract of N620 Million and recently forgiven and before that given a national honour, the Wabaras, of the bribe for budget fame, the Bode Georges, took billions got a slap on the wrist, a thanksgiving and back grooving as a party chief, or is it the Ibrus, convicted and serving time in elite hospitals.

Bankole should have seen it coming, but sadly with so much to steal, they never see it coming. First it was the N2.3B naira car scam, and then the N9B naira contract scam.

And to imagine that Nigerians are celebrating Tamborine or Tambuwal, the new speaker tells us we are in for a long haul...we celebrate everything, like goodluck in the face of a lacklustre lucklost society, we are plagued with all sorts, in one week, we beat Argentine and it’s called match-fixing, and same week are lucky by 6minutes not to have lost to Ethiopia.

A nation that celebrates when PHCN brings electricity with shouts of 'Up Nepa' is already cheering, PDP Dealt with, Obj looses out and all those tantalizing haedlines. However the truth is that "It will cost the country at least three hundred and thirty-eight billion, six hundred and forty-five million eight hundred and forty-five thousand, five hundred and ten naira (N338,645,845,510bn) in taxpayers’ money to keep the 469 members of the incoming seventh National Assembly in office for the next four years."

For a nation that imports fuel that it has in abundance, because it cannot get just two refineries to function optimally. It would spend all that money for Mark, and Tambuwal, for doing nothing, It may interest Nigerians to know that sixth senate which just ended, passed only 91 bills in a period of four years with as much as over 20 Senators not having been to the chamber since January."

In the whole Bankole saga, it remains to be seen if it will end any better than other such Nigerian movies, we are either waiting for part two, or it’s to God be the glory. EFCC says they discovered Bankole was plotting other schemes to thwart his voluntary surrender, arrest or kidnap, same time, the commission says the former Speaker will remain in custody to enable him have sufficient time to answer questions on the numerous fraud allegations against him.

In all these the ordinary Nigerian just watches not knowing who to believe and exactly what is happening.

The whole Abuja is agog, well wishers and jobbers and one wonders for a group that cannot explain, how just March 30, 2010, approved for itself : Speaker, N100m, Deputy Speaker, N80m, House Leader, N60m, Dep. House Leader, N57.5m, Chief Whip, N55m, Dep. Chief Whip, N54.5m, Minority Leader, N54.5m, Minority Whip, N50m, Dep. Minority Leader, N50m and Dep. Minority Whip, N50m for expences.

At a time when Nigerians are groaning under all sorts of economic pains, when governors while stealing claim they cannot pay N18, 000.

For the Bankoles in our society the arrogance is swell, its continuous, because what can the people do, it remains to be seen how Jonathan can achieve the feat of getting back a semblance of sanity into a corrupt system. With men like Dimeji's father Chief Alani Bankole, an Egba High Chief whose only comments were, he was not worried about the arrest of his son because he was sure that at the end of the day, the embattled former speaker would not be indicted.

“I trust my son. He will not be indicted. You can quote me as saying so.” What air of certainty, who would not feel that, if my son can steal, my error, I mean take a loan of N1B only I will say same I am sure?

I will take excerpts from an essay I wrote some five years back and conclude, Corruption has and will continue to thrive because we have power concentrated in the hand of few people who are not practically accountable to the people. Nothing visible and strongly commendable has happened, we can only hope for internal system restructuring, a form of self-repair.

We are on a continuous guinea pig breeding exercise of corrupt public officials that keep thriving because of a dysfunctional budding democracy, a democracy that has continued to remain nascent at the expense of public good.

Despite the entire baby crawling efforts at posturing that Jonathan will do, this government lacks the commonest transparency as those before it, and as been done in the past, with aid from some eggheads, and credit to them, we will watch as they increase the technical complexity of their so-called reforms to conceal or pave way for the further distortion of the economy.

Bankoleism will be further enshrined into the system because of an illiterate, apathetic and ignorant populace, without adequate public discernment of political choices and knowledge.

Our inability to tackle the menace of Bankoleism will leave us in the present masquerade supervised corruption in health, education, Police, transport, aviation, roads, housing, etc.

Jonathan and his team, if he can, if he will, needs to answer the following question, how does a public official advertise his corrupt services, what are the methods for concealing a corrupt payment, how do corrupt partners integrate vertically? If these and many issues are addressed, there would be fewer Bankoles.

It’s not about eliminating corruption, it’s about rebuilding the system, and we all have a part to play. Jonathan do one thing!

Addendum
Now the FOI Act has become water, when do we start drinking, even though its not well packaged, man shall not live by bread alone, but off course that’s why there is butter. Nigerians should start asking questions from the Bankoles, their elected or selected representatives.

Written by Charles Dickson.

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