Mar. 10, 2014
by Farouk Martins Aresa
Ask the world what they know about Nigeria; almost everyone is convinced that billions are lost every day to corruption. What the Nigerian elites, educated, cronies and the privileged cannot agree on is how many of them deserve punishment or the highest honors of the land. As far as Nigerians are concern, my looters are better than yours. They cannot even agree on whose money is stolen with this idea that a man can steal from himself or from his own backyard.
Whoever says Voodoo does not work, has never been to Nigeria where it works on people en mass like crazy as if they are in a trance. We know the caliber of brains the Country produces since they can compete with any brain in the world and win given the same environment. But in the environment Nigerians created for themselves at home, every man is for himself, while some brains are frozenly Voodoo-mized.
If there is a country that has brains, vigorous press and vitality, Nigeria will be counted amongst the best in the world. However, it is not enough to have each of these; it must be applied and utilized to move the Country forward. Even education without application to achieve and adapt to local needs and environment may not be useful resulting in mis-education.
Case in point: Until recently Central Bank was fairly managed by impeccable character, scandal free. Even when this was flouted during Abacha’s reign, a manager would rather resign than comply with an illegal order. Reactions to the last two governors of Central Bank illustrated the hypocrisy, ethnicity and foreign religious embedment displayed. It cut across from highly informed individuals to lowly informed grassroots taking inconsistent positions on the same issue depending on who was misappropriating trust.
Many of us do not even care about the highest honors if bestowed on these two governors. It was pointed out that Diepreye Alamieyeseigha and Bode George made the last honors’ list. We then asked if formers speakers like Bankole and Salisu Buhari also did. Nothing else is surprising about unsung brains that should be honored that are ignored. As some decline, many succumb to hedonism adding it to their feathers with religious honors to help Voodoo-mize their people.
Well, if you do not believe in Voodoo, call it anything you want. Some of us have found out it is beyond ethnicity or even race because they do not chose foreign partners and cronies based on those alone. Indeed, there is self-discrimination against Africans that are not trusted. They need some vehicles to transfer their loot outside, so your ethnicity or race has a limit. At the national or state level though, if looters are caught, there are enough townsman to vouch for them.
But then, it is only a fool that is caught in a net or trap that cannot even catch a mouse be it Police, EFCC Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, ICPC Independent Corrupt Practices Commission or various probes set up by Senators and Representatives. It only means you must steal enough to bribe or blackmail your way to the top. Those who ran outside the Country are cursing themselves for making such a foolish mistake.
Out of all the big rogues, not a single one big enough is in jail. It is a matter of time before one of the courts let him loose. They celebrate their good fortunes in Church and Mosque that teach forgiveness after each sin. Throwing them in jail means vendetta, political witch-hunt and lack of connection. They overcome the “injustice” of getting tried and sentenced by some honest judges that have not got the memo that everyone has a price.
Nigeria has what it takes, many as Balarabe Musa, Oby Ezekwesili, Femi Falana, Professors Osuji and Adenike Grange but they have never been able to form a quorums where and when necessary. We know how Issac Boro, Ken Sarowiwa, Tai Solarin, Gani Fawehinmi and Solomon Lar with many others fought so hard. These great minds are displaced and religiously Voodoo-mized by ancient preachers and holy books written by cavemen to indoctrinate African culture.
Even students of those days including Kayode Adams, Segun Okeowo, Ayesha Imam, Olisa Agbakoba, Festus Iyayi, Abubakar Momoh, Osagie Obayuwana, Eskor Toyo, Edwin Madunagu, Bene Madunagu, Niyi Fasanmi, Toye Olorode, Dipo Fashina, Idowu Awopetu may now be sadly forgotten. There are fewer students to emulate them. Many may wonder how often we have to fight, tell, write and urge before people wake up from Voodoo-mized stupor again and again.
The masses have become so traumatized, revealing how governor rig elections or blaming the masses for tolerating their stealing does not even register anymore. They are more concerned about what is in it for them. Nor did the confessions of armed robbers like Oyenusi and Aninih make a difference. More people joined politics to loot and more take to armed/pen robbery. They tell you only people that had no opportunity or daring enough as fanatics complain.
Please, it does not mean that Nigerians are not mad for stealing them blind, they are mad like hell. If you dare them, try stealing a pin in the market, you will see jungle justice in action. They literally transfer their rage unto those they can handle and run from those politicians that surround themselves with mean looking thugs that later on become their kidnappers.
The same countries that aid and abet corruption where most of the loots are hidden, write report about it while looter remain unmoved and unfazed. Even when these countries jail them for money laundering and cancel their visas, these looters go to court claiming violation of their rights, at least in United States. So when people say they steal with impunity, you can replace that with Voodoo-mization with alacrity because their people let them.