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Posts tagged ‘Nuhu Ribadu’

Nigeria: To Kill A King By Dr. Peregrino Brimah.

By Dr. Peregrino Brimah

DISCLAIMER: For the internet warriors, before they ask for my head; ‘kill’ does not mean murder and murder does not mean death. Just like ‘drunken’ does not mean pertaining to alcohol and could refer to lackadaisical, inebriated or insatiable.

 To ‘kill’ a king, you must find his weakness or his strength.

Well, we have found the weakness of our tyrant king. It stares us in the face: Women.

100 million men cannot kill the king. Taking away all the kings men, cannot kill the king. All the chiefs and kings in Nigeria cannot kill this king. Obasanjo, IBB, Nuhu Ribadu, El-Rufai, Tambuwal, Tinubu, Fashola, Kwankwaso, Amaechi, Lamido, Baraje, Saraki, Atiku, Buhari, Wole Soyinka, … basically every single who-is-who in the nation’s political history. Sometimes I wonder; who is left with the King? It seems the only man of ‘repute’ left on his side is Tukur. The same Tukur that said in May last year that “Boko Haram is fighting for justice; Boko Haram is another name for justice.” Yeah, that Tukur.

So how is Nigeria’s king, who is locally and globally acknowledged to be one of the worst and most dishonest and corrupt leaders in history, from CNN to the World Bank, from Britain to Switzerland, from Otukpo to Bama; being able to resist a coup, resignation and impeachment?

Johnie’s Angels: The power of powered women.

John Lennon, famous writer and a founder of the Beatles, said: “As usual, there is a great woman behind every idiot.” Or perhaps this quote by George Carlin phrases it better: “Here’s all you have to know about men and women: women are crazy, men are stupid. And the main reason women are crazy is that men are stupid.”

Our King knows. He trusts no man. Every last man can leave his side, he won’t bat a lid. He has his power Patiently by his side. He has his other Angels, ready to ‘bitch’ it for him to the last drop, and he too is ready to stand by them, no matter what thefts, no matter what deaths. He has dried up the economy to make sure no man gets money that can be used against him. Salaries aren’t being paid, Niger Delta militants riot in Russia for no stipend. Even Stephen Keshi, who took Nigeria to victory, is owed.

But what we all realized last week, as a hidden power ‘Angel’ revealed herself among the Angels of ‘Charlie,’ was that, he has ‘your woman.’ You better be careful if you want to deliver a ‘death-blow’ to this King, because he has the Pin of power women; you might want to look closely at the political woman by your side and the ones in your family, because this ‘party man,’ is a real man of the party, booze and babes. He is a woman’s man true and through. He knows their price; how to buy their loyalty. He knows how to keep them at bay, ready to turn them out against you, as and at whenever needed.

So if you honestly wish to ‘kill’ this King, you better work on his powered and power-able Angels. You might also wish to find a Queen and let her loose against him. That will crush him. A cat fight!

It lactates, the ‘Oracle’ said. “The one who guards the King and the one who will give the King his parrot’s eggs (which traditionally was done when chief’s told a King he was impeached and should kill himself) is the one who holds the baby for nine months.”

SECOND DISCLAIMER: This article is mere satire. This is not a chauvinist article. This article refers only to a handful of cabal women and does not in any way suggest or attempt to suggest that women in general are more manipulate-able, purchase-able of influence-able toward participating in and supporting corruption, tyranny, divisionism and destruction of nations.

Secret delivered, I will like to formally welcome Obasanjo to our fold as ‘APC,’ that’s ‘APC’ the Opposition (not necessarily registered in the party), as anyone of us who opposes this insane administration is labeled by the less than 3000 remaining ‘paid’ supporters of the King.

May the families, friends and colleagues of those killed and maimed by Boko Haram terrorists, due to our under-equipped and underfunded army in Bama, have the fortitude to bear the losses and the patience to prevail till a new administration that values our military and civilian lives over their lining of their pockets, replaces this one.

Dr. Peregrino Brimah [Every Nigerian Do Something]
Email: Twitter: @EveryNigerian


The Obasanjo Letters By Sonala Olumhense.


Sonala Olumhense

Writing about Nigeria in the past 13 years has often felt as if I wrote about one Olusegun Obasanjo.  Last week, his own daughter, in an outpouring of “frustration with you as a father and a human being,” completed the story in response to his own letter to President Goodluck Jonathan.

Iyabo Obasanjo confirmed that the man we know as Olusegun Obasanjo, who led Nigeria twice and who happens to be her father, is a liar, manipulator and hypocrite.  He is also a bad father and husband.

Iyabo described him as only someone who shares the same genes could have done, and in the process perfectly captured why Nigeria is stuck in the sands of shame.

Here is her key characterization of her father:

“You are one of those petty people who think the progress and success of another takes from you.  You try to overshadow everyone around you, before you and after you.  You are the prototypical “Mr. Know it all”.  You’ve never said “I don’t know” on any topic, ever.  Of course this means you surround yourself with idiots who will agree with you on anything and need you for financial gain and you need them for your insatiable ego.”

Iyabo’s bravery is to be praised.  Her critics should honour her courage and sacrifice.

The truth is that her intervention in Nigeria’s march to futility is not only about her father.  She may not have meant to, but she covered several demographics involved in Nigeria’s national disgrace.

Of those politicians and hangers-on who choose praise and worship of the tyrant for a spot on the route of power and privilege, she wrote: “You and your cronies mentioned in your letter have left the country worse than you met it at your births in the 1930’s and 1940’s. Nigeria is not the creation of any of you, and although you feel you own it and are “Mr Nigeria” deciding whether the country stays together or not, and who rules it; you don’t…”

She spoke about uncaring high-level politicians, including President Jonathan, recalling the PDP Presidential Campaign event in Abeokuta in 2007 when presidential candidate Umaru Yar’Adua was reported to have died.  As it turned out, he was only sick but had had to be flown abroad. Arriving for the 12 noon event at 11am, Iyabo was stunned to be told people were leaving because the Presidential candidate had died.  Reaching her father on the phone, he ordered her to announce Yar’Adua was only sick, and that the rest of the team, including Mr. Jonathan, would arrive shortly. “Your team didn’t arrive until 4pm and by this time we had just a sprinkling of people left.”

She wrote about Nigeria’s apathetic and self-deluding citizenry: “As the people that stole their millions are hailed by them the innocent is punished.”

She wrote about Nigerians abroad:  “I can speak for myself and many of them: what they are running away from is that they can’t even contribute effectively at the same time as they have to deal with constant threats to their lives by miscreants the society failed to educate; deal with lack of electricity and air pollution resulting from each household generating its own electricity, and the lack of quality healthcare or education and a total lack of sense of responsibility of almost every person you meet.”

She wrote about Nigerian journalists, recalling a case arising from her tenure as a Senator.  “Nigeria accused me of fraud with the Ministry of Health…When the court case was thrown out because it lacked merit even against the Minister, no newspaper carried the news. The wrongful malicious prosecution of an Obasanjo was not something they wanted to report; just her downfall.”

She wrote about herself: “I tried to contribute my part to the development of my country but the country decided it didn’t need me.  Like many educated Nigerians my age, there are countries that actually value people doing their best to contribute to society and as many of them have scattered all over the world so have many of your children… But it really wasn’t about me, it was about right and wrong in society…”

Her conclusion about all of this: “Nigeria has descended into a hellish reality where smart, capable people [in order] to “survive” and have their daily bread, prostrate to imbeciles.  Everybody [is] trying to pull everybody else down with greed and selfishness — the only traits that gets you anywhere. Money must be had and money and power is king. Even the supposed down-trodden agree with this.”

Of that characterization of Obasanjo’s Nigeria, she says to her father, “Your contribution to this scenario cannot be overestimated.”

Many people have written to, and about, Obasanjo over the years.  I do not think he has read any of them.  Iyabo’s is different and epochal because we know he has read it, and that for perhaps the first time in his long life, that he has winced in pain, if not in guilt.

For those hypocrites who say nobody should talk to a parent like this, I reply that it also takes a mortally-wounded child to say to a parent, “You are one of those petty people who think the progress and success of another takes from you…”

But that is one truth about being Olusegun Obasanjo.   A master of the ad hoc, the haphazard and the whimsical, in 2003 he announced an “anti-corruption” campaign that was not meant to fight corruption, but to shield it.

In the end, his own anti-corruption czar, Nuhu Ribadu, explained what we all knew: Obasanjo was more corrupt than Abacha; he just knew how to cover his tracks.

He launched the National Economic Empowerment and Development Strategy launched in March 2004 as Nigeria’s ultimate home-grown economic reform programme which would transform Nigeria by 2007.  That programme did not even last up to four months, and Obasanjo did not care to mention it again.

This is where President Jonathan, a product of Obasanjo at his most manipulative, comes in.  It is interesting that in reference to Mr. Jonathan, Iyabo asks her father: “That letter you wrote to the President, would you have tolerated such a letter as a sitting President?”

Of course not, but President Jonathan would be mistaken if he thinks Iyabo speaks in his favour.  The truth is that the Obasanjo letters are actually one, not two.  Read them together and they are the tale of one evil, not two.

Mr. Jonathan may be dealing with some problems that he did not create, but he is one of the problems that Obasanjo manufactured, and he has performed that way.  While he is free to deal with his Obasanjo problem as he sees fit, it does not absolve him of responsibility for the issues raised in the older Obasanjo’s letter to him.  At the moment, ours is a country heading for hell.

The key challenge that Iyabo identifies is that of character.  Greed, self-centredness, indolence and hypocrisy run Nigeria.  In her father, she writes, “Your attitude is a reflection of the country. It is not certain which came first, your attitude seeping into the country’s psyche or the country accepting your irresponsible behavior for so long.”

I find no evidence that Mr. Jonathan is capable of elevating himself above the malfeasance.  What is even more important is whether Nigerians, as individuals and as groups, are capable of rising to a higher state of Nigerian-ness, citizenship and responsibility.

Otherwise, “As the people that stole their millions are hailed by them the innocent is punished.”


A Shell-Shocked Presidency By Sonala Olumhense.


Sonala Olumhense

Dear Baba: I write this letter by myself out of respect for the fact that you wrote by yourself the important letter you addressed to me.

First, I apologize for the many previous letters that you sent to me that I did not acknowledge.  I have to be honest with you: I completely forgot to read them.  I confess I did not know there would be so much to do in Aso Rock!  Sometimes, Patience helps me, but then, one has to be careful because of State House gossip.  People think I do not hear when they refer to her as “Mrs. President.”

With respect Sir, your letters are usually quite long.  The current one is 18 pages, and I am shell-shocked.  I started reading it, but NTA had a nice story about the First Lady. Between Bamanga Tukur, G7, APC, Boko Haram, Rivers State, Transformation, I could only read the first page.  No, it is not that I am such a slow reader; it is just that simply to justify the letter, you gave 10 reasons, averaging one reason per sheet of paper.

Anyway, after they woke me up on Wednesday to inform me the letter had leaked, I finished reading the whole thing.

Baba, you cast me almost as a fictional president, as if I exist only in the imagination.  This is far from the truth.  I am real: the Obateru of Owu Kingdom, a title given to me by your own people in your presence in 2006.  I am not a figment of the imagination.  I am on Facebook.

There is no crisis of leadership, and there is no deceit or deception.  I am the author of the Transformation Agenda, which is changing Nigeria overnight.  I declared a state of emergency in the Northeast, and the soldiers are slaughtering Boko Haram in the streets, from the air, and in the forests.  Once my soldiers have killed all of them, the problem is finished.

The same optimism must apply to security nationwide.  There is nothing to fear: I travel by air.  Namadi travels by air.  Patience travels by air.  The Ministers travel by air. Military and security chiefs travel by air. We know that kidnapping, piracy, abductions and armed robberies are everywhere, but I can assure you we will not be kidnapped or killed.

Baba, you also referred to unemployment.  I have done the research: unemployment is like corruption: exaggerated.  Look at Asari, he is employed.  Look at Timpolo.  Look at Doyin Okupe.  They are proof I am conquering unemployment.

The same goes for corruption.  Only the Americans are fighting corruption more than me, and I will continue to fight it.  That is why you do not hear of anyone in my government going to jail, because nobody in my government is corrupt.

Remember, Baba, last January when Oby Ezekwesili alleged monumental corruption by the Yar’Adua/Jonathan administrations, saying we squandered $67 billion? Several months later, she also alleged that since 2005, about N1 trillion has been spent on the National Assembly. Those figures are just like the Central Bank governor saying NNPC has since 2012 failed to remit almost $50 billion to the Federation Account.

Baba, all these numbers are lies because they cannot be true.  I have never seen that kind of money in my life.  NNPC does not have that kind of money, so how can it be missing?  In fact, they do not even have people to count such money; Dizzy would have told me. If we do not ignore the rumours, people will think Nigerian leaders are rumour-mongers.

If we had that kind of money, Ngozi would have told me.  Ngo is so intelligent, she always knows such things, which is why she did not reply Ezekwesili’s rubbish and did not reply Lamido.  She has learned to ignore nonsense.

Concerning the economy, have you listened to Ngozi lately, Baba?  You were the first to invite her to the government and you know Ngo is a magician with the economy.  When she was at the World Bank, she helped the whole world to fix their economy.  So I said, my sister, please come home and help to fix our own.  By 2018 or 2019 when she would have finished her magic, you will see.  Every town in Nigeria will have an airport.  Every village will have a university so that everyone will have a university degree. Every unemployed youth will have a car.  Every chief will have a new palace funded by the government.  We will ban unemployment.

Baba, mine is an active government.  We are not a “non-action, cover-up, denial or bribing” government.  I have set up dozens of presidential committees: Projects Assessment; Ministries, Departments and Agencies probe; Oil Sector Revenue, headed by Mallam Nuhu Ribadu; contracts and procurements; SURE-P, countless committees.

People speak about NNPC investigation, but I have investigated NNPC already and I can tell you it is not corrupt at all.  They are doing a wonderful job.

All my committees work hard and they write a lot of reports.  One day when I am not travelling, we will start assessing them.  By 2017 or 2018 everybody will marvel at our achievements.

It is not that we are not getting results yet.  Contrary to what you said, we have statistics showing that Nigeria has become the favorite destination of investors in Africa, with the highest investment of $8.4billion.  I put this in my mid-term report this year, my government aims “to attract $20 billion worth of foreign investments in three years,” that is, between 2013 and 2016.

Baba, your letter shows that you may be a little afraid of the future.  I assure you the future is bright.

I don’t know where you heard the information about 1000 people on the political watch list and the training of snipers.  That is classified information the security people are not going to be happy.  Let me just say that if there is a list, it is not up to 1000; I don’t know where Abacha trained his killers; and nobody has said anybody will be killed.

Also sir, talks “about possible abuse and misuse of the military and legitimate security apparatus for unwholesome personal and political interest”?  This is wrong sir.  The military and security are supposed to do the right thing.

Sir, I think leadership by example is overrated.   I have refused to declare my assets publicly because Nigerians will start focusing on what I own, not the sacrifices I am making for them. I am not the issue, Nigeria is.  Remember I declared my assets recently, in 2007.

Also, remember you put me in office.  I did not expect it.  I was indicted by Ribadu’s committee in 2006 but you wisely destroyed that report and you handpicked Umaru and me.  I have not changed; I am still your good luck charm.

Sir, “before it is too late”?  Success is never too late or too long?  Remember you were the one who said PDP will rule for 100 years.  We have at least 87 years left.  Politics is dynamic, not static, and the plans of the founding fathers, if not good enough, must be made to fit the realities of today.  It is more important for the PDP to be wrong but be in power than to be right but be right but not be in power.

That is why it is in the best interest of Nigeria that I run in 2015.  Otherwise we may all have to run away.  If not PDP, what?  If not me, who?

  • Twitter: @SonalaOlumhense


Sorry General Obasanjo, But It’s Already ‘Too Late!’ By Chinedu Ekeke.

By Chinedu Ekeke

Dear General Obasanjo : Your 18-page letter to President Goodluck Jonathan, which was leaked to the press yesterday, left many mouths agape in utter wonderment. That letter, every patriotic citizen must agree, summarizes Mr Jonathan’s administration in content and character. His regime is a marvel of transgression. In fact, General, many of us – Nigeria’s nobodies who have somehow found space in twitter’s ability to absorb frustrations in 140 characters – have been dubbed ‘children of anger’ by the president’s spokesperson, Reuben Abati. Our sin? We have long told them that this government is empty, that its head means no good for the country, and that its key players stink of corruption.

The truth in that letter will not permit anybody, and that includes the worst of your critics, Dear General, to accuse you of bitterness. No matter what Abati comes out to feed us, for sure, people like me will not agree with him or his ilk that you are one cranky old man, envious of his principal. It does appear like you were sincerely led by the love for country in drafting that letter.

However, General, the same truth in the said letter has prompted some of those who read you to wonder where this patriotism was while you bestrode Nigeria’s political landscape with visible mercilessness in the 8 years that you ruled. And while it lasted, you probably never imagined that a day would come when the genie you planted in your kitchen will spring up and give every family member the run of their lives. For those of us who think you did this land evil by your choice of successors, this is that ah ha! moment.

General, you rightly recognized that by being Nigeria’s president, one was handling five positions concurrently. It was from these five positions that you created this president Jonathan and foisted him on a nation in need of speed. Like I have said in the past, Jonathan is your legacy. You will live with this reality till the day you die. In your essential nature, which is particularly common with the Nigerian politician anyway, you kept dropping God’s name in that letter. You claimed God made Jonathan president through you. That’s not true, General. God did not make Jonathan Nigeria’s president. You did. Actually, Nigeria’s president as of today could have been anybody. It was just for you to decide. Whoever you foisted on the nation in 2007 was your choice, not God’s. And like I said, that president could have been anybody. Do you realize, General, that if the presidential candidate in 2007 had been a Nuhu Ribadu or an El-Rufai, then there wouldn’t have been a President Jonathan today? Because, for one, they are both still alive. I am assuming that your VP choice would still have remained Jonathan. I mean, if you had tinkered with your combination for that contest, the outcome today wouldn’t be exactly what it is. If it had been Yar’Adua and another Ijaw person, capable and detribalized, we wouldn’t be having a President Jonathan now. It’s important you note this.

May the General be reminded that, as at the night you conscripted Governor Goodluck Jonathan into the presidential race – to serve as Yar’Adua’s running mate- he had a huge case of corruption hanging on his neck. Which makes it, permit me to use this, hypocritical of you to now accuse the president of corruption. You are worried about the allegation that sales of crude worth billions weren’t remitted into the nation’s treasury? Seriously, General, what makes you think a corrupt governor will not be a corrupt Vice President? And how will a corrupt Vice President not make a corrupt president? Interestingly, you were the one who constituted a Joint Task Force in 2006 which listed Goodluck Jonathan amongst candidates for prosecution on the grounds of false declaration of assets. It was a breach of Code of Conduct for public office holders. That Task Force was headed by your anti-corruption chief, Nuhu Ribadu. It comprised of the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC), The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), The Code of Conduct Bureau (CCB), The Department of State Services (DSS), and the Nigerian Police. In their report, they recommended for prosecution of Dr Goodluck Jonathan and some other state governors of that time. The grounds for Jonathan’s potential prosecution were stated as follows:

Substance of Charges (1) False Declaration of Assets

(i) Lexus Jeep worth N18 million claimed to have been acquired through savings in 2004. Verification reveals that the Jeep was a gift collected in contravention of the CCB Act of 1990. Same for BMW 7351 Series bought in 2005 worth N5.5 million;

(ii) Acquisition of properties outside legitimate income; Seven Bedroom Duplex acquired in 2001 worth N18 million at Otuke Ogbia LGA, Four Bedroom Duplex acquired in 2003 worth N15 million at Goodluck Jonathan Street, Yenegoa;
Five Bedroom Duplex – acquired in 2003 worth N25 million at Citec Villas, Gwarimpa II – Abuja.

Yet you, without regards for decency and honour – oh, that word! – for the office of the president, forced Jonathan into the presidential contest the very next year. So who is the problem? The leopard which is unable to change its spot or the man who didn’t like the spots but still opted for the leopard in a contest where only the Zebra was good enough? Your argument that you wanted a core North/South South combination in 2007 isn’t tenable, because much as it (the North/South divide) is our reality, Yar’Adua/Jonathan wasn’t the only solution to that challenge. In truth, if you went for merit, they never came near the mark. There were hundreds of more qualified and better people from the two regions. General, admit it, your choice of Yar’Adua and Jonathan was in your best interest, not Nigeria’s. It was more of an ego trip than a journey to bequeath our fledgling democracy competent, and able hands.

I heard you mention ‘honour’ in your letter. That sounded strange. Honour? Well… there’s a coalesced consensus on your person, that you aren’t the type who qualifies even remotely to charge anybody of lacking in ‘honour’. Would you be kind enough, General, to remind us how honourable it was to want to tinker with our nation’s constitution for a self-serving third term to be inserted therein? Some of the most qualified people in your administration to succeed you in office were snubbed because they didn’t support your third term plot. Remember how much you bribed legislators to ensure the constitutional amendment did happen? At that point in our history, you, General Obasanjo, did not care if Nigeria was tottering on the edge of entropy. It never mattered that your action was driving us back to 1966. Today, Jonathan, driven by the same ambition that propelled you, doesn’t really give a damn. Those who tried it before him are still alive and well, and you would want to also add, superbly rich, to junket the whole globe donning the garb of international statesmen. Jonathan thinks he has a future in the trade that sustained – and still sustains – you. So why blame him? You showed him the path to dishonour. He is not likely to depart from it. It is good to suddenly remember such an ideal as honour. I just however, thought to remind you that it would have come handy when you were the president. And with such example, the presidency wouldn’t have attracted a character like Goodluck Jonathan under your supervision.

You talked about crises in your party and how the president fuels it. Well, you are right. For self-serving interests, Jonathan has factionalized his party. But I just think he learnt that from you. Dear General, do you remember a man called Audu Ogbeh? How did he stop being PDP national chairman? You went to his house at the thick of the night and procured his resignation at gun-point. And what was his offense? Oh, it was a letter. You see, a letter! Letters, especially this type you wrote Jonathan, are known to get you irate. Mr Audu Ogbeh wrote you a letter seeking your intervention – in your capacity as the Party Leader – in the political crises engulfing one of your PDP states. Recall, General, that Chris Ubah, billionaire tout and a relative of your late wife Stella, kidnapped the state Governor Chris Ngige and practically brought governance in the state to a halt. He had also set ablaze the seat of government. The governor’s security details were withdrawn with order from your Abuja and all you did was look the other way. Even when it became public knowledge that all Ubah wanted was for the state finances to be emptied into his bank accounts, you never acted irritated. You never cautioned Ubah who was enjoying your support. You can’t deny this, General, because Ubah’s blood brother, Andy, was your domestic aide then. And, as you once made us know, he used to serenade you to sleep. You masterminded the destabilization of a couple of states in Nigeria as the president. You effectively played God, sir. Isn’t it clear that Mr Jonathan’s polarization of PDP is reminicscent of the manner you equally polarized the party?

On sycophancy, you equally enjoyed a substantial dose of it. Remember Ojo Maduekwe? He was your man-Friday. You know, we all know he has a history of excellence in playing the perfect courtier. In early 1998, while you were languishing in prison, Ojo was at Abuja telling Nigerians why Abacha must transmute from army camouflage to baban riga. He said Abacha was the best thing to happen to Nigeria since the invention of Garri Ijebu. And then the moment Abacha died, he did a 360 degree and became your best man. At Eagle Square, at the twilight of your presidency, when you were plotting your eternal hold on PDP, Ojo was the one who helped you change your party’s constitution to make way for your emergence as the BOT chairman. That a character like that was very close to your government says much about your love, or lack of it, for truth.

There is an area I am tempted to absolve you of blame on the Jonathan presidency: the President’s clannishness. He hasn’t risen beyond ethnicity. He won’t. You see, it takes an upbringing of sufficient exposure to Nigeria’s diversity to not be tribal. Jonathan doesn’t have the heart to refrain from being the president of the ‘Ijaw Nation’. Sad as this is, you still are to blame. There are ways to find out if a man is a closet bigot, especially if the man isn’t ambitious. Ambitious men have a way of hiding their true selves. Jonathan the governor in an Ijaw state wouldn’t have been able to hide his disdain for other parts of the country; because, he never aspired to play at the national level. If you had sought for signs in 2007, you’d have seen many. But let’s face it, General: you weren’t after a detribalized Nigerian being the Vice President. You were only for a Vice President who had the capacity, alongside his principal, to be manipulated. And that you planned to do from your Ota Farm. Remember you told El-Rufai this? Well, The Accidental Public Servant, his expose on all that transpired in that government of yours, is my supporting evidence.

As a president, you were nationalistic, no doubt. And for that you deserve my commendation. But you did not necessarily seek nationalists to succeed you. You wanted puppets. You just got served, General.

I do not intend to do you an 18-page letter. I do not have such luxury of time. I’m in my productive years, and must use it to, in the absence of social security put in place in the country you ruled for 11 years, work extra hard in search of a secure retirement for myself.

So permit me to conclude this letter by referring to a very courageous assertion you made in your letter. I personally think that line should resonate in all books of Nigeria’s history at the right time. You said; “I have passed the stage of being flattered, intimidated, threatened, frightened, induced or bought… Death is the end of all human beings and may it come when God wills it to come.”

If you had abided this philosophy while you reigned, I doubt if we would be where we are today. For instance, the Ibrahim Babangida whom you craved the President’s indulgence to put in copy of the letter would have been where those who mismanage $12.4b of their countries’ wealth are kept: jail.

It’s disgusting to flaunt a friendship with a man who liberalized corruption in the country you claim to love, when, in truth, you had the opportunity to extract justice from him for the rest of the citizens, and even humanity.

You see, you wrote a good letter. It is only sad that this mess we are into could have been completely avoided…by you. Now, the next solution, which is the president heeding your wise counsel, will unfortunately be rubbished by his knowledge and those of his aides, that you did not lead by example. The president will, as it is practiced amongst Nigeria’s political elite, hurl the message inside the trash bin because the messenger is tainted.

This is why your message came way too late, because you, while you served in that same capacity, should have been the message yourself. And if you had been, Jonathan wouldn’t have become, because in him you wouldn’t have found the depth required to steer the ship of the Nigerian state, the entity you profess so much love for.

Thank you, General, and please accept the assurances of my highest regards.

Chinedu Ekeke
(An unknown Nigerian)

P.S: Should you consider joining twitter anytime soon, please chat me up as @Nedunaija. And just a reminder, President George W H Bush, at 89, is on twitter. So General, you may want to join us.

Chinedu Ekeke blogs on


Buhari, Tinubu, Ribadu Storm Kano To Woo Governor Kwankwaso Into APC.

Governor Rabi’u Kwankwaso
By SaharaReporters, New York

Governor Rabi’u Kwankwaso of Kano State said on Thursday he will consult stakeholders of the Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP) in the state before deciding on whether to join the All Progressive Congress (APC).

He made the remark at Government House in Kano when he received a delegation of APC national leaders led by Gen. Muhammadu Buhari (Rtd) who came to request him to join the party.

“I will sit down with all stakeholders because there is no decision I can take as governor without consulting the stakeholders of the party.

Kwankwasiyya movement is a disciplined movement. We are working as a group and a team,’’ he said.

“Certainly we will sit down all of us and look at all the challenges and the consequences if any, and together we will take decision on what to do and communicate to you,’’ Governor Kwankwaso told his guests.

The governor described the Kwankwasiyya Movement as a “powerful movement” which has the capacity and strength to win the election again in 2015. “We are stronger now than when we had no government,” he asserted.

He told the gathering that he was happy that the leadership of the APC, which comprised highly respected Nigerians, found him worthy of the visit, pointing out that he had associated in one way or the other with most leaders of the party in the past 20 years.

Earlier, Gen. Muhammadu Buhari said the delegation was in Kano as part of a “recruitment drive” for their party to ensure that Kano joins the progressive fold.

He stressed that the APC was concerned about the socio-economic development and the security of the citizenry, lamenting particularly that the Boko Haram crisis was a deliberate attempt by some people to clog the wheels of the country’s progress.

Others who spoke during the visit were the APC National Chairman, Chief Bisi Akande and Governor Rochas Okorocha of Imo state. They praised Kwankwaso for his efforts to move the state forward and enjoined him to join the APC in view of his progressive stance.

Also present during the one-day visit were other bigwigs of the APC, including the governors of Lagos and Ekiti States, theformer Speaker of the House of Representatives, Aminu Masari; former EFCC Chairman Nuhu Ribadu, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, as well as serving and former legislators.

Oduagate, Jonathan Presidency And The Culture Of Corruption By Peter Claver Oparah.

By Peter Claver Oparah

Nothing best demonstrates the decrepit condition of the Nigerian state at present than the handling of the lurid details of what has come to be known as Oduagate today. To the extent that most Nigerians have come to see the dithering of the Jonathan government in adopting a firm position on the issue as a predictable effort to add the malfeasance that is spewing from the scandal to the rich list of official scandals that have been festering in the life of this regime, Nigerians believe that nothing substantive will be done by the regime to ensure that the wellhead of corruption, which thrives so luxuriantly in this regime is capped. It is unfortunate that gradually, the country is being led to believe that corruption and graft are integral parts of the directive principle of state police and no previous regime in Nigeria has made this retrogressive policy statement more forcefully than has the Jonathan regime.

It may be true, as being put forth by perverted ethnic mandarins, that what presently passes off as Oduagate is becoming an integral part of statecraft in Nigeria. It may be true that corruption has become an ethnic commodity in Nigeria; to be hoisted by respective ethnic divisions to ferry their guilty compatriots from indictment. However, it speaks so low of the present regime that corruption and graft have assumed such life where all it takes to get a culprit exonerated from his or her obvious crimes is to wave a tattered and shameful ethnic bandana. And this has been because room has been created for unpardonable lax in the presumed fight against corruption, which has been a convenient mantra successive regimes have clung to for the purpose of purchasing credibility.

But in a clear instance like the Oduagate where the culprit was caught with her hands fully dipped in the cookie jar, a president mindful of his name and the legacies he leaves behind would not have second-guessed before he does the needful, which is offloading such putrid garbage. A president that attaches even the flimsiest meaning to integrity needs not be prodded to shake off such embarrassing tag the continued tolerance of Stella Odua is bringing to the regime. A president mindful of his placing in the pages of history needs not have waited till Oduagate mutates into a shameful exchange of ethnic brickbats by ethnic minions who predicate their commission on how they are recruited to grow the burgeoning corruption complex. Furthermore, a president careful of the signals he sends forth would not have allowed his party to attempt to muddle the issue on clear partisan coloration. Such president would have been careful to send the signal that his government is interwoven to corruption, as his deliberate dithering on the issue and on such similar issues in the past, portend.

But Nigerians may be dreaming if they expect such actions that speak of an ethical high-ground from a Jonathan government. Again and again, this government continues to demonstrate that it cares no hoot being bandied as corrupt. It has been a free reign of scandalous conduct and means which rebuke decent conduct in governance. Nigerians recall the sordid malfeasance that many believe, is grown in the oil sector, the highlight of which was that in one fell swoop, the government carried out a N2.3trilion heist where state resources were freely shared amongst choice lackeys, cronies and subalterns in the name of fuel subsidy. Even as the government had tongue-in-cheek, admitted such hefty scandal, it had not brought any of the known culprits who are its enablers, supporters and fronts, to justice. It had traversed curious ways to ensure these economic rapists remain free from harm’s way and openly sabotaged the report of the Nuhu Ribadu panel that exposed large-scale officially-induced graft in the oil sector. Today, the Nigerian oil sector remains a cesspool of corruption and its case has been worsened by a frightening large-scale oil theft which most Nigerians consider as an insider-deal and which bleeds the country of an estimated N10 billion each week!

As it is in the oil sector, so it is in the energy sector which had remained terminally cancerous even with the billions of dollars poured into it. At the end of the day, Nigerians are being arm twisted into paying higher tariffs for nonexistent light. Even the much saluted privatization of the sector is not emitting any early signals of revival. These are two instances of the way the government has allowed the scourge of corruption to inflict deep cancerous gashes on the country and its citizens. It is so pervasive that every sector reels from the scourge and it has become such an epidemic because the government promotes a permissive culture that allows corruption to permeate and mutate in various forms and guises. It has become so bad that it has completely demolished what remains of the national moral sinew. In the sequel, such bodies like the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, which hitherto made pretensions to fight corruption, have been buried in unmarked graves. Cronyism, influence peddling and impunity which grow corruption and financial indiscipline are allowed free rein and state resources are plundered with daring audacity.

A fat, obtuse and wasteful government ensures that several fonts of corruption are unleashed on the resources that would have bettered the lots of perpetually suffering Nigeria whose lives continue to trudge on the thorny paths of a brutish, short and nasty life. In the sequel, an insignificant few, with access to the operatives of government corner the common till and flags not in plundering such national patrimony to the detriment of the masses. It is for this reason that Nigeria is today a study in contrasts where government trumpets a growing economy but where the citizenry is experiencing the worst form of privation ever. It is for this reason that Nigeria has earned more oil revenue in the last fourteen years that it earned in the rest of its 39 years independent history yet poverty is rifer than at any period of our history. It is ironic that these free loaders succeed in enlisting the politics of poverty which undergirds the conduct of the present epoch to recruit their victims to bring ethnicity into cases of corruption against them. It is a greater tragedy that a presidency that should wield the hammer in such dastardly instances and weigh in the moral cudgel willingly plays up the game and takes deft measures to inter such brazen cases of corruption each time they arise.

The absence of a leading figure abhorrent and intolerant of corruption has unleashed a wild gusto of free loading amongst public office holders who always trust on the unfailing support of the president to rally to their sides when they are caught in the act. Because the present government is ethically rusty, morally compromised and stunted in credibility, it had not failed to leverage its cover to any of its officials caught plundering public funds. At best, it tries to politicize such lurid cases and wait till our historical national amnesia quells such scandal and consigns them to our narrow subconscious.

Nigeria needs instant redemption, anchored on the need to re-discover our moral compass, reawaken our ethical underpinning, and resurrect our sense of shame and hewing for ourselves a leadership that has the guts and enough personal distaste for corruption. The citizenry need to rediscover their lost souls to stand and mobilize enough shame to confront corruption and its perpetrators, regardless of their ethnic origins. This is the only way to save the country and its citizens from possible perdition where it is irrevocably heading for at present.

Peter Claver Oparah
Ikeja, Lagos.


The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of SaharaReporters

How I Got My Police Dismissal, Demotion Reversed – Nuhu Ribadu.


Nuhu Ribadu
By SaharaReporters, New York

The pioneer chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Mallam Nuhu Ribadu yesterday disclosed that the decision by the Police Service Commission (PSC) to demote, and later dismiss him from the Police was nullified by a court, causing the reversal of the action taken by the government.

Ribadu was demoted from Assistant Inspector-General AIG of Police, to a Deputy Commissioner of Police, and subsequently dismissed from the force for alleged gross insubordination. He challenged his demotion at the Federal High Court in Abuja, but fled the country after two failed assassination attempts on him.

The PSC reinstated him in May 2010 as an AIG, with effect from 22 December, 2008, and converted his dismissal to retirement.

Mr. Ribadu referred to the court case during his remarks on Wednesday at a public lecture to mark the official opening of the new law office of a renowned Lagos lawyer, Mr. Tayo Oyetibo (SAN), stating that it was Mr. Oyitebo who handled the case on his behalf.

Against the backdrop of some insinuations that he got back his rank of AIG out of the magnanimity of the Goodluck Jonathan administration, the former EFCC boss described as one of Oyitebo’s “many historic victories” having “the decision reversed and my ranks restored”.

He said the action of Oyitebo was “a huge favour which I may never be able to repay, except with these tokens of gratitude.

“I’m here today not just to honour my brother Barrister Tayo Oyetibo (SAN), but to sincerely express a depth of gratitude for his selfless contributions to my personal and public service career. My relationship with this remarkable lawyer is one for which I must forever remain grateful. He has stood with me, believed in my causes while I was at EFCC and dedicated his time and resources to representing us pro bono.”

Ribadu also recalled the contributions of several other legal practitioners who supported his tenure at the EFCC and beyond as well as some operatives of the commission who paid the supreme price in the line of duty.

He said, without the sacrifices and support of those individuals, the commission, then under his leadership, may not have recorded as much success as it did within the six years of his stewardship at the EFCC.

“I want to seize this opportunity to thank the brilliant lawyers and brothers who stood for us and provided us with their free legal service at the EFCC, especially at the time we were under tremendous pressures in our struggles to carry out assignments considered impossible by detractors. These are distinguished lawyers and models for the practising and aspiring lawyers.

“I will forever remain indebted to the late Chief Gani Fawehinmi, his Chamber and family, for standing with us, and representing us in courts without asking for a kobo. Chief Gani was swift in challenging the decision to have me vacating office for a course at Nigerian Institute of Policy and Strategic Study (NIPSS).”

He also described as “favours no man can ever repay” the sacrifices of Barrister Femi Falana (SAN) and his chamber, including his successful defence of the case filed against him by then Attorney-General of the Federation, Mr. Michael Aondoakaa at the Code of Conduct Tribunal over a false claim of failure to fill out the assets declaration form as a public servant. “This was among the many cases Mr Falana successfully handled for me and the EFCC at no cost of ours while I was in charge,” he said.

“I must also thank my friend and classmate, Barrister Charles Musa and Chamber and my younger brother Barrister Ahmed Uwais and Chamber, who participated in these historic struggles of my career, and invested their time and resources for my sake, and the sake of the nation. I must also commend the Nigerian judiciary for being the shed inside which our hope was restored. We don’t come across kind-hearted people like them everyday.”

Mr. Ribadu did not forget some of the officers at the EFCC, some of whom paid the highest price, calling them “hardworking colleagues and brothers lost in this struggle for the redemption of our beloved nation.”

Among them, he recalled “Muazu, our forensic expert, who was killed in front of his family; Danjuma Mohammed, also lost in similar inhuman state, in his residence at Apo, Abuja; M. Abba, who was burnt alive in Abuja inside his car.”

It can’t be worse than that,” the former policeman said.  “sThese were evil ploys carried out by enemies of the nation to have us cowered!”

It remains unclear why the determination of Mr. Ribadu’s case against the government has not been mentioned before now, including by Ribadu himself, but that may be partly due to the contradictions in the mainstream Nigerian media, which follows the path of power and wealth, and is known for its reluctance to follow-up stories.

It would be recalled that in 2010, Ribadu’s reinstatement to the police force was widely-perceived to be owed to Mr. Jonathan’s intervention.  It was not denied by anyone, becoming a public relations bonus for the new president.

Letter To Nuhu Ribadu, Or Reflections On The Destiny Of A Mosaic Generation By Pius Adesanmi.


Pius Adesanmi

Pius Adesanmi

Mallam Nuhu Ribadu, although you are a Moslem, your cosmopolitanism is such that you surely are familiar with one of the most famous biblical aphorisms about the truth. “Ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall set you free,” declares our Galilean friend and apostle of Jesus Christ, John Zebedee, in the biblical book which bears his first name. Freedom, that which is actuated by the truth, came, for me, in the form of a reluctant admission of one grim, sobering, and solemn fact about the destiny of my generation (40 – 60 years-old) in the Nigerian equation.

I was set free the day I decided to accept a friend’s Facebook advice that some countries are not meant to be good, fair, and just in the lifetime of particular generations of their citizenry. I was set free the day I decided to live with the fact that, as that friend of mine put it, some countries are meant to serve a higher and nobler purpose by being bad, corrupt, unfair, unjust, self-destructive, and permanently dysfunctional as a lesson to others who may point at them and learn how not to be a country. Another bosom friend of mine, one of Cameroon’s most prolific novelists, recently told me, also on Facebook, that Paul Biya’s favourite refrain is: “tout, sauf le Nigeria!” Anything but Nigeria! And that from the mouth of one of Africa’s open sores! Paul Biya can tolerate the idea of Cameroon being as bad as anything except Nigeria! When you serve as an example of how not to be a country for a buffoon serving as life president of one of Africa’s most wretched banana republics, you can hardly sink lower but I don’t trust Nigeria.

I was set free the day I decided to accept the fact that I am unlikely to see in my lifetime the Nigeria that my pen and intellect have been fighting relentlessly for all these years. I was set free the day I decided to accept the fact that, although many of the intellectual warriors fighting for and envisioning a new Nigeria, and rejecting Nigeria as defined by Goodluck Jonathan and the corrupt brood of vipers he leads in the political class, are members of my generation, ours is a generation that should look in the mirror and see Moses starring back at us. I am talking about that lonely, forlorn figure on the heights of Mount Nebo, the location from whence his eyes beheld the Promised Land whose earth his feet would never kiss. I was set free the day I accepted the fate of Moses: I may be capable of deploying the power of my imagination to “see” the Nigeria that I am fighting for, it is highly unlikely that the real thing will happen in my lifetime. Given Nigeria’s life expectancy, I’m in fact already in the ranks of lucky citizens functioning in injury time.

So, why I am still fighting, having accepted these liberating truths about my fate as a Nigerian? The answer is simple. I have to die fighting to ensure that the generation after me will not hand over the Mosaic fate to those coming after them. I have to die fighting to ensure that the Nigerian babies we are making as write will not hit their forties, fifties, and sixties writing Mosaic epitaphs for posterity. I have to die fighting to ensure that those coming after me will fight a much shorter battle and stand a much brighter chance of seeing a Nigeria that is fair, just, humane, functional, and developed in their own lifetime. This battle is, of course, in the long run, to be fought in the domain of the bigger picture.

Today, we have to contend with the short run and the smaller picture of the everyday mess that is Nigeria. That is where the problem lies. The everyday mess of Nigeria comes with certain realities that you and I had better wake up to, Mallam Ribadu. The smell of the coffee is so strong that I’m surprised you’re not choking on it. I have watched with considerable admiration this past week your continued efforts to rid our land of corruption. You took the battle to James Ibori in a London court room. And we were reminded of that unbelievable episode of the $15 million bribe you rejected from the Homo Corruptus of Oghara. That, alone, makes you the Nigerian of the century. It may take another century before we encounter a Nigerian who would throw $15 million back in the face of a corrupt bribe giver.

You have, of course, been very talkative. You have said a lot of things about James Ibori. You have said a lot of things about Mike Okiro. Ibori and Okiro are of course two corrupt jackasses and there is nothing you are saying about both men that Nigerians don’t already know. What you seem to have forgotten is that Nigeria is the political paradise of corrupt jackasses. Nigeria is where a jackass Presidency makes it a point of duty to rehabilitate, recycle, and reward corrupt jackasses; where the system awards nine lives of political relevance to corrupt jackasses and they are recycled back into the system as kingmakers, elder statesmen, and shapers of public opinion. Think of Diepreye Alamieyeseigha. Think of Bode George, the ex-convict now running his filthy mouth all over our newspapers.

Going to 2015 and even 2019, this is the Nigeria that we’ve got. I am saying in essence that 2015 and 2019 are part of the short run and smaller picture of Nigeria’s everyday mess that we must deal with. With the kind of money they have in a place like Nigeria, we could very well wake up tomorrow and see a political landscape with Mike Okiro and James Ibori featuring as Godfathers and shapers of political destinies. Nobody with the amount of money that Ibori and Okiro have stolen is ever irrelevant in Nigeria. We are hearing stories of companies still making remittances to Ibori. He is still in charge of the treasury of Delta state via his cousin, Emmanuel Uduaghuan. That is a lot of corrupt money, the sort of corrupt money that the jackass Nigerian state and the jackass Nigerian system reward with political relevance, prison or no prison.

Perhaps you are running your mouth against these two corrupt jackasses because, unlike me, you are yet to make your peace with the possibility that ours is such a hopeless system that both men could become political players in 2015 and 2019 irrespective of their current stations in life. This is why I must ask you a question I want you to think about very seriously: if things happened the Nigerian way and Okiro and Ibori (from prison) suddenly became very serious players in the 2015 and 2019 chess game, would you stand your ground and maintain everything you have said about both men this past week? We’ve been down this road before with Asiwaju Bola Tinubu and Patience Jonathan. I don’t want to awaken the ghosts of recantation. I don’t want to relive the sordid spectacle of a man of honour and integrity suddenly swallowing previously uttered words like balls of pounded yam red carpeted through the throat by egusi soup with orisirisi.

I was part of the Nigerian Village Square ( editorial board team that interviewed you in the build up to 2011. We had some very interesting interview sessions with a good number of presidential aspirants. We interviewed General Buhari, Dele Momodu, and Governor Bukola Saraki. Then came your turn. We in the panel had all your statements about Patience Jonathan and Tinubu in google printouts right there in front of us. It was very painful listening to you as you tried to heehaw your way out of statements you made to the nation. You screamed and swore and denied and denied and denied again. No, you never said any such thing about Tinubu’s corruption. Patience Jonathan is corrupt ke? E gba mi o. When and where did I say it? You attributed everything to the handiwork of mischievous and disgruntled elements.

Now you are back in the public square screaming that two seriously moneyed figures who, thanks to our jackass political system, could be back as serious players and makers of political destinies, are corrupt thieves. Yes, Okiro and Ibori are corrupt jackasses and irredeemable thieves – two essential requirements for political relevance and leadership in Nigeria. But you do understand that you have considerable followership in Nigeria and many look up to you as an essential player in the Nigeria of our dreams.

Personally, I do not see a path to Nigeria’s future that would exclude somebody like you. However, whether you will be in the position to play the role I believe destiny wants you to play in the life and future of Nigeria depends on you and your mouth. If you can keep that mouth consistent on the track of denunciation of corruption without shameful recantation at the first smell of political opportunity, I think you will last long in the business of working for Nigeria’s future and fulfilling the hopes and aspirations of your teeming followers and admirers. If, however, the political destinies of Okiro and Ibori changed in 2015 or 2019 and you hit the airwaves heehawing that you never said the things you are saying about them today, the two men may yet stand on their mountains of corrupt money and point at the ashes of your reputation as warning to those who attempt to rubbish corrupt jackasses in Nigeria, the political paradise of corrupt jackasses.


Ibori stole $500m in 8 years, Ribadu tells London court.


Pioneer chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Mallam Nuhu Ribadu, returned yesterday to the Southwark Crown Court, London where he was crossexamined by lawyers for former governor James Ibori of Delta State.

Ribadu also expressed the belief that Ibori was receiving police undue protection in the era of former Inspector- General, Mike Okiro, as he cited the removal of his (Ribadu’s) car and bodyguards by the police as signs of bias against him.

At his first appearance at the weekend to testify in a confiscation hearing over assets accumulated by Ibori with his loot, Ribadu told the court that the former governor, who is currently serving a 13-year jail sentence in the United Kingdom, had stolen as much as $500 million during his eight years in office.


At yesterday’s proceeding, Ibori’s lawyer, Ivan Krolick, questioned the former EFCC boss on his testimony on Friday regarding $15 million bribe that the jailed governor had offered him.

During cross-examination, Ribadu provided a more detailed account of the bribe which, in his testimony, was delivered to him in cash at the Abuja home of Andy Uba, a former domestic aide to President Olusegun Obasanjo. The former EFCC boss had also stated that he took possession of the cash and immediately deposited it at the Central Bank of Nigeria.

He told the court that he wanted the CBN to count and hold the cash for the “people of Delta State”, adding, “I was very determined to return it.” Krolick told the court that the bribe saga was “a plot hatched by Ribadu”.

He insisted that “Ibori was not at the meeting at Uba’s house, and no bribe was given by him (Ibori); he is in no way connected with this.”

A Nigerian legal analyst who watched the proceedings told SaharaReporters that the defence lawyer’s denial was “extremely weak and unconvincing,” adding that Ribadu’s account was corroborated by other EFCC operatives.

“In addition, how could Ibori deny providing the funds when the physical cash is sitting at the Central Bank of Nigeria? Nuhu Ribadu’s evidence was compelling,” the lawyer observed.

Ribadu told the court that the EFCC under his control was extremely busy with more than 100 investigations on corrupt officials in Nigeria.

He added that Ibori was both clever and determined not to get caught, recalling that as he and his team of investigators closed in on Ibori’s corrupt activities, the former governor made several overtures to befriend him. He testified that the former Delta governor would telephone him “as much as 20 times a day; he was very persistent.”

He further testified that Ibori became desperate as he feared that the investigation would make him “lose the governorship and the money”.

Ribadu recounted that Ibori did not like EFCC investigators visiting his office and asking questions. In a telephone conversation, the ex-governor reportedly told the EFCC boss, “Stop it, stop it. Take the money and stop these investigations. I can give you more.”

Ribadu told the court that he played along with Ibori because he wanted to reclaim the bribe money for the people of Delta State. He added that he would have liked to catch the former governor in the act of handing him the cash, but he enjoyed immunity from prosecution as a result of his office.

The former EFCC chief told the court that he could not even question the ex-governor about the source of the bribe, adding that tracing its origins was an arduous task because of the huge number of banks in Nigeria.

Ribadu stated that the then governor offered to deliver the money at his home, an option he reject because he did not agree to deliver the cash to his office. In the end, according to Ribadu’s account, it was agreed to meet at Uba’s walled and gated “compound”.

He said the eventual meeting took place in the daytime on September 25, 2007, shortly after the former governor had lost his immunity from prosecution. Ribadu narrated how he met Ibori in a private room in Uba’s house, with only the former governor, his associates, and Ribadu sat.

According to him, Ibori handed him the money after about 15 minutesm adding that the cash was contained in dark-coloured cases which Ibori opened to show the then EFCC chairman, before instructing his men to hand it over to Ribadu’s men who were waiting outside.

Ribadu told a riveted court that the money was immediately taken to the CBN and counted. He added that the CBN issued a receipt dated September 26, 2007 for $15 million.

It would be recalled that the $15 million is still the subject of ongoing litigation between the Federal Government and Delta State. A Nigerian high court judge deferred a ruling on the ownership of the funds till a later date.

The Crown prosecutors closed the confiscation hearing yesterday by reading out the contents of an email exchange between Ibori and his UK lawyer the day before the bribe was delivered by the former governor. Ibori’s email read, “Just had a chat with my insider. Should [serve] as restitution…I can walk away, without a trace…”

Ribadu told the court that, shortly after the drama with Ibori, he was relieved of his EFCC post and ordered to attend a course at the Nigerian Institute of Policy and Strategic Studies at Kuru, Jos. He narrated to the court that the “despicable Okiro took over as the head of police as the Inspector General of Police”.

He told the court that Okiro ordered the removal of his car and bodyguard, leaving him exposed. He added that he knew he was being watched and followed all the time. In addition, he told the court that two attempts were made to assassinate him and his briefcase was stolen in “sinister” circumstances.

Source: Radio Biafra.

Understanding Nigeria’s Biggest Hoax By Sonala Olumhense.



Sonala Olumhense

The following story, about Nigeria’s anti-corruption hoax, is principally for the record.

It involves a well-defined set of four relatives of the issue: Nuhu Ribadu, the pioneer chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC); his successor, Farida Waziri; the former President and instigator of the EFCC, Olusegun Obasanjo; and Goodluck Jonathan, his troubled political son and current president.

As it turns out, the EFCC’s Media Unit has a publication named, dramatically enough, Zero Tolerance (ZT).  On the occasion of its 10th anniversary, it interviewed these four, the most prominent names in Nigeria’s corruption story.

Obasanjo, who praised Nuhu Ribadu lavishly, told ZT that the appointment of Mrs. Waziri to succeed him at the top of the EFCC in 2008 was a mistake and had ‘slowed down’ the offensive against corruption in Nigeria.

He was choosing his words about that appointment with great care, like a man walking barefoot in the dark in a floor littered with broken glass.  About Mrs. Waziri herself, however, he emptied his pistol.

“I know that the woman they brought in to replace Ribadu was not the right person for that job because I understood that one of those who head-hunted her was Ibori.  If Ibori, who is now in a UK prison for fraud, head-hunts somebody who will fight corruption in Nigeria, then you can understand what happened.”

Then he dragged her under the microscope:  “Go and look at the condition or the qualification; go and look at the type of interaction that anybody holding that job will have with a similar organisation elsewhere; did Waziri have that type?  What connection did she have with the FBI, what relationship did she have with Metropolitan Police in London…”

Hearing those words, Mrs. Waziri, who was fired in November 2011, was outraged, at least publicly.  Pointing her well-manicured fingers in the general direction of Otta, she warned Obasanjo he could face embarrassment.

It would have been hilarious were it not deathly serious.  Waziri ran the EFCC right after Obasanjo, and she sounded as if she had seen a few files that confirm why Obasanjo should be in jail.

Unless she is lying, it is unclear why she would have stared at those files for three and a half years but not invite the old man to answer a single question.

Yet she told ZT she was surprised that a man who has ruled Nigeria twice would peddle falsehood.  She warned Obasanjo to respect his age or else she would “open up on him,” dismissing his claims her relationship with Ibori as “lies of the enemies.”

She also threatened a tell-all book.  “By the time I write my book, the truth will prevail,” Mrs. Waziri said.  “I never knew Ibori; look I believe what is worth doing at all is worth doing well. I don’t believe in half measures. By my training and upbringing, I can never betray my country for anyone.”

Did you notice that the old man did not call Mrs. Waziri by name?  He called her “the woman.”

President Jonathan, who brags about one-third of his cabinet being female, was no kinder when he spoke to ZT.  “There was a lady who was there,” he said.  “There were lots of complaints.  Some may be right, some may be wrong, but perception matters so much when handling matters like corruption.”

Weighing each word like Obasanjo on that floor with broken glass, Mr. Jonathan underlined how important it is, in fighting corruption, to enjoy the confidence of the people.

“I had to remove her and that does not mean that she is guilty of the allegations, but because I saw that Nigerians no longer had confidence in her.”

It is unclear to me how Mr. Jonathan, given his own track record on the corruption file, came to know the relationship between perception and reality.

Then, treading carefully, deploying assumptions and suppositions, he called Mrs. Waziri another name.  “Assuming somebody, who is heading an agency that is supposed to handle corruption, is not doing that and says it is because of the President’s body language, that person is not competent.”

Of course Mrs. Waziri was incompetent.  Public criticism was heavy because she was cooperating with corruption, not combating it.  Everyone who had paid close attention to the EFCC during her tenure knew.  Civil society organizations issued statements.  The media published stories.  American agencies boycotted her.  Protest groups embarrassed her in the United States.

And yet, when Mr. Jonathan finally released her, it was simply by naming her successor.  Jonathan, finding her “incompetent,” not necessarily crooked, fought corruption by asking no questions of her.

I will give Mrs. Waziri one thing: Obasanjo was wrong in suggesting she lacked credibility abroad because she lacked traction with foreign agencies.  That is nonsense: if you are appointed by your country to head an agency that has international responsibilities, your country’s authority is all you need.

Similarly, Obasanjo’s praise of Ribadu presents a contradiction.

First, we know that Ribadu was a little heavier on the bluster than he was on the substance; and more decisive on Obasanjo’s enemies than on Nigeria’s corrupt.  Second, Ribadu has since those days dismissed Obasanjo’s government as having been far more corrupt than that of Abacha, telling US Ambassador Robin Sanders in December 2007 that Obasanjo just knew how to cover his steps and deceive the international community.

Beyond that, a clearer picture now exists of Obasanjo’s atrocities during his time in office, including blocking the implementation of reports by the EFCC and the Joint Task Force on corruption that would have seen many former governors in jail.  One of them was Ibori, to whom Obasanjo alluded in his ZT interview; another was Asiwaju Bola Tinubu; and yet another was Mr. Jonathan.

Another reason why Obasanjo has no basis for talking about corruption is that were there a true war going on, he would be in jail himself.

Despite her threats, we know that Mrs. Waziri will not pen one courageous paragraph, let alone a book.  She will open Pandora’s Box, and be consumed by it.

As for Ribadu, he was clearly used by Obasanjo, but he did work with commitment, apparently determined to see the EFCC as a credible institution, as his comments to Ambassador Sanders about setting up a Crime Centre show.

However, he compromised himself in 2010 when, upon returning to Nigeria, he autocratically and embarrassingly contradicted himself over Mrs. Patience Jonathan’s 2006 money-laundering cases without bothering to demonstrate either process or proof.

All of which leaves Nigeria—lacking that zero tolerance for crooks and cynicism—a country sitting on the world’s seventh-largest natural gas reserves, and producing two million barrels of oil per day, still lacking essential development, a country where the poverty rate has leapt from 46% to 76% in the last 16 years, according to the United Nations.

Nigerians must continue to demand of its leadership answers and performance.  Results are difficult to come by, but to keep quiet is the biggest danger.  In particular, Nigeria’s youth, from whom both the present and the future is being stolen, must refuse to be intimidated.   They must ask questions of those who claim to represent or serve them.  And there is no better time than when such people are looking for a refill of their cups, or attempting to rewrite History.


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