TANKO Yakassai, an elder statesman and former presidential liaison officer in the Second Republic, has described the anti-corruption efforts of the President Muhammadu Buhari administration as a mere propaganda.
Yakassai, national chairman of the Northern Elders’ Council, who spoke with Vanguard newspaper in Abuja said any fight against corruption must be holistic rather than being centred on just an individual.
He chided the Buhari administration for its open disdain for valid court orders urging him to obey all court orders relating to Sambo Dasuki, a retired colonel and former national security adviser, NSA.
According to the elder statesman, Buhari can only be taken serious if he extends his dragnet across the inter-party divide as well as to other tiers of government.
Yakassai said: “The Federal Government of Nigeria is only fighting Sambo Dasuki. Should the fight against corruption begin and end with Dasuki? Is he the only “corrupt” person? Till today, they have not even started his case in the court. He was granted bail twice and they refused to let him go. This is not a fight against corruption. It is a propaganda fight.
He said it was unfortunate that people like Wole Soyinka, a professor of literature and human rights activist, could be convinced and made to believe that the government was actually fighting against corruption.
“But there is no such thing. Otherwise, how many people have they arrested?
“All the people that are arrested today are connected with Dasuki. No other person has been picked. What of the governors, ministers, top civil servants and local government officials? Can you fight one person and say you are fighting corruption?” he queried.
Yakassai also traced the menace of corruption to the military saying their incursion into politics in 1966 and 1983 only helped to teach politicians how to steal.
Speaking in the same vein, Matthew Ashimolowo, a senior pastor of the Kingsway International Christian Centre, KICC, has called on Buhari to expend only 20 percent of governance time to the past, “otherwise, it will take forever for majority of Nigerians to see changes.”
Ashimolowo, who gave the advice, asked the president to adopt Parento’s Principle, which means that the federal government should dedicate 20 percent of its resources to going after perceived looters, while 80 percent should be given to creating an enabling environment for Nigerians.
Speaking to journalists at the 10th edition of the annual widows New Year party in Ode-Omu, Osun State, he said: “President Buhari is a man of great integrity, who wants the best for the country. But if he spends all his time pursuing looters, the majority of us who did not steal will suffer.
“Therefore, he must use the Parento’s Principle to approach governance. If you have your eyes permanently on the rear view mirror, you cannot drive fast. The past deserves just 20 percent attention.”
— Jan 13, 2016 @ 13:15 GMT