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Nigeria and Afghanistan are “fantastically corrupt” countries, says Cameron


Cameron-and-Buhari-pix-14_5_16Recently and in an oxymoronical manner at a private discussion in London, the British Prime Minister, David Cameron, said that Nigeria and Afghanistan are fantastically corrupt countries. The comment, coming at a time President Muhammadu Buhari was in London for an anti-corruption summit, made it look intentional, humiliating and spiteful.

Since then, it has evoked mixed reactions among Nigerians and non-Nigerians. It has put Cameron on the defensive and on the spot.

While many Nigerians have argued that there is nothing insulting or degrading in what Cameron said, considering the mind-boggling disclosures of sleazes among former government officials in recent times, others believed that Cameron must have taken a clue from Buhari who had during his several trips abroad painted the country as a corrupt nation.

Even though Transparency International (TI) and others have been critically of Cameron’s virile comment, President Buhari has asked him to return Nigerian loots that were hidden in his country, Britain. Also throwing jibes at Cameron, Buhari sarcastically alluded to the female-like escapades of the former governor of Bayelsa, late Deprieye Alamieyeseigha from the British security personnel while being held over sleaze.

Cameron’s comment may continue to dominate international discourse in the days ahead, especially with Buhari’s bold request for Cameron to return Nigeria’s looted assets. Other African and third world countries may toe Buhari’s line by boldly asking government of developed countries that have been a safe haven for looted fund to return it to the owners.

There is no doubt that Britain and other developed countries who have been pontificating and crusading against corruption have been a safe haven for Nigerian public office holders to hide looted fund and assets.

Even though some of them have been arrested, convicted and jailed by the British authority, majority of them are walking free on the streets of Britain and Nigeria, raising question on the sincerity and commitment of the British government in assisting Nigeria in the fight against corruption.

Edo Crisis: APC Sets Up Reconciliation Committee
Saying that the national leadership of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) has always played the ostrich in addressing fundamental issues affecting the party is like stating the obvious. Nigerians saw it in the way and manner they handled the issue of choosing principal officers of the National Assembly, an issue that has continued to haunt the party till date.

Having sat on the fence, watched helplessly while the party gladiators in Edo fought dirty in the public arena ahead of the September governorship election in the State, the party’s national leadership recently set up a fact-finding/reconciliation committee for the State. The committee is to be chaired by the former governor of Osun State, Prince Olagunsoye Oyinlola.

The party leadership appeared to have lately realised the implication of losing Edo in the forthcoming poll and had quickly resorted to a quick-fix measure to maintain its stronghold. Edo being the home state of the national chairman of the party, Chief John Oyegun, is the only State under the control of the APC in the South-South zone.

Oyegun may also be trying to avoid being put in the league of Chief Vincent Ogbulafor, who was the national chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party PDP in 2008, while his State, Abia, was under the control of the opposition Progressives Peoples Alliance (PPA). Having been described as an incompetent leader by the garrulous deputy national publicity secretary of the APC, Mr. Timi Frank, Oyegun may have belatedly decided to work for peace in his party to avoid being confirmed an incompetent leader after the Edo poll.

The Committee no doubt may encounter serious challenges in achieving peace and unity among the party stakeholders in the state ahead of the party’s primaries slated for June 18. This is in the light of the deep-rooted animosity, suspicious and vested interests in the party ahead of the election. Besides, the embattled party stakeholders in the State especially the governorship aspirants are insisting on a level playing ground during the primaries. But will it be possible, considering the fact that the Governor Adams Oshiomhole has anointed his preferred successor and is being accused of doing everything possible to impose him on the party?

Obasanjo Bombs Successors
Recently, former president of the country, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo was in his best element, as he took on his successors, saying that the country would have gone far if they had sustained the programmes and policies, his government initiated. He said that while late President Umaru Musa Yar Adua was busy reversing his government’s programmes, President Goodluck Jonathan’s government was characterised by large-scale corruption. For President Buhari, Obasanjo said: “He may not know much about economy and foreign policy, but he is doing well in security and ant-graft war.’

Obasanjo’s outburst may not be surprising to Nigerians, because it in his character. He is a man who derives pleasure in taking on past and present governments, especially when he has fall out with the person in the saddle. It was obvious during Yar Adua and Jonathan’s governments and Nigerians will not be shocked to see him criticize President Buhari if they fall out tomorrow. That is why some Nigerians often describe him as “Mr. Know All.”

But truly, he is one Nigerian leader that no government in power can ignore. Unlike other leaders that will decide to play the ostrich when it mattered most, Obasanjo will always make his views known without minding whose ox is gored. Some say he pontificates a lot but he cares less.

Though the Owu chief did not specify most of these programmes or policies, apart from the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), many believed Obasanjo used the anti-graft agency to witch-hunt perceived political enemies. Nigerians know that despite billions of Naira spent on power sector under Obasanjo’s government, the country is still in darkness today.

Dariye Remains A Fugitive In UK, Witness Tells Court
Peter Clark, a retired detective constable with the UK Metropolitan Police had on May 9 told a Federal Capital Territory, FCT, High Court, sitting in Gudu, Abuja, that a former governor of Plateau State and senator representing Plateau Central on PDP platform, Senator Joshua Dariye, is still wanted in the United Kingdom for money laundering charges.

Dariye, who is being prosecuted by EFCC on a 23-count charge of money laundering and diversion of funds before Justice Adebukola Banjoko, is alleged to have siphoned the state’s ecological fund to the tune of N1.162 billion.

It will be recalled that Dariye’s prosecution has been ongoing since he left office as governor in 2007. But despite being prosecuted for alleged corruption, the people of his senatorial zone, Plateau Central have voted him into office twice as their senator. With no tenure limit on the seat, they may vote him in again in 2019 if care is not taken. That is the irony of the situation in Nigeria. It is case of monkey no fine but mama like am.

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