Wednesday, 6 February 2013
Governance: Witch doctor to the rescue?
THE villagers have a better way of expressing the same feelings. They will quickly tell you that there is no royal road to geometry and that life has no short-cut. Some will keep drumming it into your ears that you shall only reap whatever you sow
Many may not want to put up with all the inconveniences of going to school. Going to school is seen as punishment with hard labour. And in the end, you even graduate into unemployment.
Life in Lagos may be different. Each time I visit this friend of mine, I also feel the inconvenience. Those innocent kids of theirs must wake up as early as 5 am to prepare for school. Their parents drop them off on their way to work in the Island.
My friend can only pick them up as from 6 pm after balancing the books at the bank. On the days of light traffic, they would be lucky to get to their home at Ikeja around 10 pm. This routine is replicated every working day of the week.
A cheaper alternative to this ordeal of going to school would be to leave the children at home to play football and gradually develop into area boys.
The only irony in all this is that those who opt for this alternative would wake up one morning, wanting to become the President of the country. If they do not succeed in becoming president, then it is home trouble and witches in the village that are after them.
By the time we shall be reading this piece, a witch doctor of sorts shall have resumed duty in the power sector. Somebody is certainly bringing a complete innovation to governance; call it government by voodoo, if you wish.
On Wednesday, January 23, 2013, the Senate confirmed the nominations of Alhaji Tanimu Turaki and Prof. Chinedu Osita Nebo as Ministers of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. Prof. Nebo is bringing a wealth of experience and a lot of wizardry into office.
Hear him: “If the President deploys me in the power sector, I believe that given my performance at the University of Nigeria Nsukka, UNN, where as a Vice Chancellor, I drove out the witches and demons, God will also give me the power to drive out demons in the power sector.”
To drive away the witches presupposes that you know their covens. At the UNN, locating such covens might not have been too difficult. The same may not be easily said of the power sector, where some of the covens may be located in high places, even in Aso Rock Villa itself.
Those suspended investigations and the unimplemented probe reports are in the coven. Who will dig them out? Therein lies the litmus test.
We hope Prof. is not underestimating the areas in government where his expertise will be urgently required. Recent events indicate clearly that the areas are legion: when President Goodluck Jonathan visited the Police College, Ikeja, we wonder what he expected to see.
He could as well have been expecting to see the type of buildings they have at West Point or Sandhurst. What right had the President to expect so much? Couldn’t he have provided for the fact that, that was a clear abode for the witches, wizards and demons over the years?
By the time the fat flies and beautiful cockroaches from the pit latrines came out to mount a guard of honour for the President, it dawned on him that all he had been hearing about the level of corruption in the police domain were not fairy tales, after all.
Year after year, heavy budgetary outlays have been devoted to the police but turn after turn, many Inspectors General of Police have come out richer than the Federal Government.
Each time, the king carries a stick in readiness for war, what should the palace attendants do? Whenever the IG took the big chunk, his subordinates swallowed the balance. So down the line, we may soon find that everyone in the system is a demon, deserving to be chased out.
It is now very clear the real justice in Nigeria can only be obtained in foreign courts. Recently, it took a far away British Court to jail Governor James Ibori for the crimes over which Nigerian courts had set him free.
He could even have been awarded medals here as a mark of honour for doing great things.
On Wednesday, January 30, 2013, it took a Court in The Hague, Netherlands, to rule that the Royal Dutch Shell’s subsidiary in Nigeria, Shell Petroleum Development Company, SPDC, was responsible for the terrible oil pollution in the Niger Delta area of Nigeria. Nigerian courts have consistently given the SPDC a clean bill. Clearly, there are lots of demons to be chased out of our judiciary.
You must be well to be able to say you are not well. We keep considering only the small items. John Yakubu Yusufu must be wondering why people are demonstrating when he “stole only N23 billion of the Police Pensions Fund”.
After all, he has been sentenced to a whole two years imprisonment with a huge option of N750, 000 fine, which he promptly paid.
Meanwhile, most of the owners of the pension money have died in the process of waiting for their money.
Again, Yusufu’s takings merely form an infinitesimal fraction of the entire haulage. Yusufu must be complaining that at least we got something from him. And don’t forget, he still has the right of appeal.
What of a former governor who allegedly stole his state blind under immunity? As soon as he left office and lost his immunity, he rushed to the court and slapped a perpetual injunction on the people barring them from asking him any question.
It is all happening in our time; in the 21st century Nigeria! And the world is watching us! Holy Ghost … Fire!