The change mantra wielded by the All Progressive Congress (APC) led
government is a welcome development. It has overwhelming support of
Nigerians who have been robbed of their commonwealth by a few greedy
individuals. it is however instructive to know that using corruption to
fight corruption is similar to making similar mistake several times and
expect positive results.
It is therefore necessary to understand that President Muhammadu Buhari led
administration may not be remembered for its fight against corruption alone
but on how the fight was fought. If the cleaning of Nigeria from its
nauseating corrupt status is tilted to defeated members and sympathizers of
the ousted Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), the aim will be defeated and
analysts will dismiss it as a “witch-hunt”.
It is instructive to intimate that reports pegs over N3.7trn is so far lost
on account of corruption in military arms deal since the past 29 years.
While in the purchase of military equipment, the issue of witch-hunt
wouldn’t have been valid if the entire corruption war was transparent. The
selective investigations and probes is fast eroding the stance of Buhari
led administration against corruption.
The media is recently harping on revelations against Abdulrraman Damdazzau
and Tukur Buratai over alleged involvement in arms deal. Denials,
rebuttals, threats have trailed their alleged involvements. First it was
Buratai who was reported in the media on alleged corrupt property ownership
in Dubai, United Arab Emirate.
Buratai and his media handlers denied the allegation, discarding it as
actions of ‘social media terrorists’. Buratai, initial reaction was denial,
later acceptance, claiming he acquired the properties from savings. The
Code of Conduct Bureau (CCB) was quick to exonerate him, insisting he
declared the asset.
Many pundits are confused on how Buratai and his wives, Aishatu and Kalsum
could save several millions to purchase the properties acquired. Though the
CCB was fast to come to his rescue, it continues to remain fuzzy when they
claimed he allegedly declared the properties in the name of his wives.
On the Dambazzau allegations, those who should know better have alleged
that he was involved in arms deal between 2007, 2010 when he was the Chief
of Army Staff. They are however petrified when government confirmed they
are yet to extend investigation to include the above mentioned years from
arms deal investigation.
Recent reports however assert that Dambazzau who served as Chief of Army
Staff from 2008 to 2010 was not omitted as FG alleged. The investigation of
the audit of defense Equipment Procurement in the Nigerian Armed Forces
inaugurated in 2015 by the President Muhammadu Buhari led administration
actually covered the time he served.
Already the Dambazzau and Buratai rollercoaster on arms deal is an affair
spinning out of control. I am indeed puzzled and interested in clearing my
head on who is shielding who and for what purpose? Is the PMB led
administration suddenly suffering from “sacred Cow” syndrome en-route its
We must establish the brains behind what appears like surreptitious moves
to doctor documents that might indict Dambazzau. We must subject available
facts to maximum scrutiny. The claims of CCB on Buratai alleged asset
claims against possible arms deal proceeds must be thoroughly investigated.
This is indeed necessary considering Buratai’s position as army procurement
officer before his new assignment.
Petitions against ex-governors who jumped political ships to the APC few
weeks to general elections in 2015 on alleged corrupt practices were
ignored. The cry for justice is everywhere urging government to be
justiciable in dishing out judgment regardless of party, social and ethnic
If the gray arrears are not cleared, the fight against corruption will be
classified as a charade, a contraption to inflict maximum harm on members
and sympathizers of the opposition party. There are cases politicians with
no integrity are shielded or condoned by anti graft agencies.
Let me intimate that PMB is able to go this far in the fight against
corruption on account of his unrivalled, unblemished credentials of
integrity, honesty, probity and accountability. The applause is gradually
fading on account of the soiled hands of those expected to assist him in
wrangling the hydra headed monster of corruption.
Buhari must however be informed that goodwill is like candle, it must be
sustained through continuous process of exchange of excellence. It whittles
off once the fire of evil surpasses the good that allows the masses to be
willing to support and encourage the leader in question.
Just as Jonathan is shouldering responsibility for all mal-administration,
financial recklessness when he was president, history will surely rate
Buhari poorly if he allows those around him to manipulate the war against
corruption. The dragnet must catch every indicted person no matter the
position, affiliation or orientation.
The present administration is only sustained on the popular agenda of
creating a new Nigeria, emancipated from endemic corruption. Once there are
gaps, twists that tilts away from the core operational templates of Mr.
Presidents “I belong to everybody, I belong to nobody”, then Nigeria will
continue to grapple with corruption and grope in economic despondency.