COMMENT | Let’s Not Deceive Ourselves: Corruption Is Winning

👤 by Umar Sa’ad Hassan, CABLE NG

‘Corruption is fighting back’.That phrase has long assumed cliché status. As a lot of us have learnt, it is the easiest way to justify a hypocritical war on corruption. Corruption isn’t fighting back when Buhari sits on the SGF probe or refuses to look into how some states are still owing workers eight months salaries despite bailouts and huge Paris Club refunds, it is winning. 

Over the last week, we have been treated to one revelation after the other on how an EFCC fugitive and Former head of the presidential task force on pension reforms under President Jonathan, Abdulrasheed Maina was recalled to the ministry of interior affairs.

Maina got away right under the Presidency’s nose and its lame attempt at saving face by ordering his sack wouldn’t buy back even an ounce of lost integrity.

As we watch with keen interest the blame game on who helped the Attorney-General Of the Federation perpetrate this contemptible act between the Minister of interior affairs, Abdulrahman Dambazzau and Head of Civil service, Winifred Oyo-Ita, it is also important questions are asked of the EFCC boss, Ibrahim Magu.

The same Magu who was indicted by the DSS for hobnobbing with questionable persons and corruption.Where was he and the agency when a person wanted by them was employed as a director in a ministry? Just before Mainagate, the EFCC had approached a court seeking the forfeiture of properties belonging to an NGO belonging to the former first lady, Dame Patience Jonathan. Not forgetting it has successfully gotten an order on a 5-storey hotel of hers.

For the umpteenth time, why is the EFCC scared of prosecuting the woman if it has any compelling evidence against her? Why hasn’t it as much as invited her for questioning if indeed it is serious about ‘investigations’? Admittedly though, it would be expecting more than we should of an agency that didn’t do that after her public claim to ownership of $15m in a bank. The EFCC wound up being sued by her instead. Add the audacity to her recent claim of witch-hunt by Magu which was countered by the Presidency and you’ll have to conclude she not only has the EFCC by the balls but President Buhari too. Maybe she and her husband know something about Buhari we don’t. President Jonathan was never questioned about his role in Dasukigate despite being named by the man himself.

In what many deem a technical foul, the wife of the president, Aisha Buhari slammed the state house clinic for not having a single syringe. That clinic has received an average allocation of a billion naira annually over the last 10 years. The President kept mute and didn’t order an investigation into how a clinic that couldn’t treat his ear infection with a billion naira budget utilized its funds.

I always say the Buhari government became a failure the very first day we started comparing it to the Jonathan administration. That we fared better under GEJ makes our case more pathetic. Buhari may very well be the biggest scam ever pulled. If we start to compare him to Jonathan on corruption,the most prominent reason why we opted for change, then we are in more trouble than we can imagine.

While it is true most facts start to reveal themselves after governments have stepped aside, the little we have seen so far of our anti-corruption crusader suggests we would be fooling ourselves to think he is playing clean.

Senator Isa Misau just days ago alleged the IG of police bought 2 SUVs for the President’s wife after a request was sent in for a Toyota Sienna and a hiace bus. The police subsequently claimed the cars were for the security in her convoy and this much was corroborated by her Director of information. I couldn’t help wondering if the DSS were the ones who bought the ‘personal’ car she rides in. Does the police actually buy cars for a Presidential convoy?

Considering she is holding that office contrary to a breach of campaign promise by President Buhari to Nigerians, one would expect her to thread with some caution. But sadly, that hasn’t been the case. The woman wore one of the most expensive wrist watches at the 72nd United Nations General Assembly in New York. A £10,000 choppard diamond wrist watch. The biggest lies are ones we tell to ourselves. Corruption is winning. We have to accept that!

Hassan is a lawyer based in Kano.

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