The Vice President of Nigeria, Professor Yemi Osinbajo, in recent time, has taken up the duty of announcing to the world the horror of corruption and the legacy of graft left behind by the previous administration. According to him, “I have seen in government in the past three years, the corruption of the previous five years is what destroyed the Nigerian economy.” He claims that “while oil prices were at their highest and we were getting growth figures as high as 70 per cent, the majority of the people remained extremely poor.”
On several occasions such as the Colloquium in honour of All Progressive Congress Chieftain Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu on his 66 birthday, the Vice President has not left us in doubt that corruption is the reason 42.4% of the Nigerian population live below poverty level; The reason Nigeria cannot boast of decent educational facilities, world class infrastructure, good health care, and an immaculate security system.
To insinuate that Nigeria is the potentially richest country in the world is not a mere hype or a consolatory statement, but a statement that is not just factual but actual. The aberration of poverty in Nigeria still amazes and disappoints foreigners who see opportunity like an ocean in the country. Nigerian past leaders, would no doubt be mourn the glorious Nigeria they once, live, fought, worked for and dream of in their grave. Considering what the likes of Chief Obafemi Awolowo, Nnamdi Azikiwe and other did during their short period as leaders in various capacities, we cannot but ask the question of how Nigeria got to be this crippled. We need to know who improvised Nigeria.
The connection between a poor Nigeria and a corrupt Nigeria is a glaring one, it is safe to say that Nigeria is poor because Nigeria is corrupt or Nigerians are corrupt because they are poor. The rate of corrupt in the country is gaining astronomic heights as poverty increases. Resources become scarce because some paranoid individual made it so, depriving others who are in turn motivated to also stick their hands into the national cake when they have the opportunity to do so.
The Ruling All Progressive Congress has said times without numbers that they are not to blame for the present undesirable state of the country and has instead blamed the problem of Nigeria to the 16 years of misrule, corruption and misappropriation by the People Democratic Party.
Blame games in Nigerian politics seem to be part of governance. It is natural instinct of an average Nigerian leader to be able to push the buck of the blame to his predecessor, especially those they are not politically affiliated with. Although Professor Osinbajo gave reasons why he feel compelled to emphasis the rot in Jonathan administration when he said “the reason why we would talk about it is because we must let our people know that we cannot afford to go this way again.”
Nigerians will recall that, like the All Progressive Congress and prof. Yemi Osinbajo, the Olusegun Obasanjo Administration blame it failure on the shortcomings of the military regimes. According to the civilian government, the Military destroyed the country. Yet the administration towed the line of corruption and ineptitude of the military regime.
The continuous lament over the failure of the Goodluck Jonathan’s administration by the ruling administration especially as regards alleged corruption the administration is accused of can only be likened to a man mourning the death of his father who passed on five years ago. Maybe this lamentation is justifiable, however, Nigeria don’t want to know who stolen what, all they want is for those culpable to be brought to book and the monies stolen recovered. In other words, Nigerians don’t want a barking dog but a biting dog.
Moreover, Nigerians are tired of being teased with all the billions that is said to be stolen by few men. Nigerians know that the level of corruption in government can only be imagined, they, therefore, voted President Buhari not to be the wailer but to tackle the problem of corruption head on as he had promised.