P ERMIT me to use this opportunity to appeal to Nigerians to support President Muhammadu buhari in the war against corruption in the country. Corruption has eaten deep into our national fabric, and it is the biggest problem that we are facing today, and according to the president himself, if we don’t kill corruption, then it will kill us.
The news that is trending in the country today is that of the judges who were arrested by the Department of State Security (DSS). I am, however, not writing to say whether the judges are corrupt, or the DSS acted outside of its power, but every Nigerian must support this government if we want to rid the country of corruption.
We may be saying that this government is not following the due process in its approach, but extra-ordinary measures are needed for extra-ordinary cases. Our case in this country is just so terrible that virtually everybody is corrupt in one way or the other. It is not only the public officer holder who has stolen, or the policeman who demanded for bribe that is corrupt; even, many of those criticising members of the political class of corruption are themselves corrupt. These same people who say our politicians have stolen billions of naira from the country see nothing wrong in themselves ‘buying’ question papers for their children to pass in order to gain admission to tertiary institutions.
What I am saying is that we should all know that corruption is corruption, and we are all equal before the law. In Brazil, a former president, Lula Ignacio Da Silva is currently facing corruption charges in the country, but in Nigeria, we see some people as being above the law, and cannot be ‘touched.’
It is high time we saw corruption as our number one enemy, and anyone who is corrupt should be prosecuted, no matter his position in the society. If China did not tackle corruption squarely, it will not be where it is today.
All over the world now, China is respected, even by the United States of America; we can also develop our country, but we must curb corruption first before it destroys us finally. Therefore, whatever manner this government has chosen to fight corruption should be embraced; we shouldn’t read political, social or religious meanings to it, as corruption is the evil that is standing in the way of our greatness.
I, therefore, want to call on President Buhari not to be dejected, as some people will criticise all his moves, but he should be strong if he truly wants to make the country corruption-free.
Finally, I want to urge members of the National Assembly to support the war on corruption by approving special courts to try corruption cases. The several cases being taken to the normal courts are being delayed by the suspects’ lawyers, and this is not good for the country. For example, since President Buhari came on board, no one has been convicted of corruption. The reason for this is that those who are accused of corruption are wealthy people in the society, and they have the financial power to employ the most experienced criminal lawyers in the country, and they, in turn, use their knowledge of the law to frustrate the trial.
However, when we have special corruption courts, then there will be time frames for each of the cases to be completed, and in the end, we can actually have people convicted of corruption. If our political office holders are not convicted of financial crime, then the war against corruption will not have any meaning.
- Sarah Nkem,
Enugu, Enugu State.