Nigeria is under state-capture of criminal elements unlike anytime in history. In the past, the saying was, “it is not officials that are corrupt but it is corruption that is official.”
Today it is not just that the government is criminal but criminals are the government.
Tinubu’s antecedents are the most criminal of any Nigerian president in history. Muhammadu Buhari and Olusegun Obasanjo were military; Shehu Shagari, Umaru Yar’adua and Goodluck Jonathan were educationists. Tinubu is a certified fraud locally and internationally not just by claims by others but by his own mouth. Even his very name and gender are dubious based on documents he himself proffered not to mention fake schools and employment.
His deputy has troubling terror ties. Like Tinubu, his political opponents were mysteriously and conveniently liquidated. Ironically Nyesom Wike who as Minister warned then Governor Kashim Shettima not to allow Borno students to be attacked in rural areas, didn’t become president but today Shettima who was responsible for the Chibok mass abductions has been rewarded as his boss. In Nigeria, it is punishable to do right and profitable to do wrong.
But it’s not just Tinubu’s past that is his problem. This weekend we remember the horrific mass slaughter of innocent Nigerian protesters by security forces called to clear them out of Lekki tollgate – the slave trading outpost of Tinubu’s tax stronghold on the most populous city-state in Africa.
Tinubu, like his running mate, Shettima, has the blood of Nigerian youths on their hands be it the victims of #EndSARs or #Bringbackourgirls – the biggest global human rights campaigns to emerge from Nigeria since the Biafra war and the June 12/Ogoni crises. And they have been rewarded with power for bloodshed.
As though that was not bad enough, the triumvirate of terror was completed in the Senate President. I hadn’t followed him closely and knew him only as the governor who gave millions to party members to buy “McDonalds.”
Shockingly, a very credible source provided documented narratives of sinister and malevolent deployment of thuggery that was corroborated by other public accounts. Nigeria is today gripped in the claws of a trifecta of the godless and the lawless.
The tragedy is that Nigeria does not deserve these. The number one citizen was ineligible to be president for forgery amongst others, the number two citizen was ineligible for double nomination amongst others and the number three citizen was ineligible from the primaries. They all are products of confused courts that abused the very laws in place to protect society from the lawless to protect the lawless from society.
The only head of an arm of government who isn’t steeped in a prolific crime history happens to be the Chief Justice of Nigeria but the public has scant confidence in his ability to do justice by them.
On my second visit to Nigeria after the criminal takeover, several things struck me.
•A Libyan-trained islamist mujaheedin Asari Dokubu addressed the media from the presidential villa bragging that he and not the legitimate military was responsible for security;
•A ship laden with stolen oil being escorted by the Navy was arrested by local vigilantes;
•The money launderer who helped General Sani Abacha loot billions of dollars was appointed the Minister for Nigeria’s multibillion dollar budget;
•A rigged-in president who’s election claimed many lives wanted to invade Niger and depose the soldiers who took over in a bloodless coup;
•Thousands of houses and facilities are to be built in states, not for indigenes displaced by Fulani terrorist attacks, but for Fulani occupation of their lands;
•A governor who left a strike in his state was appointed Labour minister;
•A governor who snapped with and signed failed agreements with bandits who slaughtered thousands of indigenes was made defence minister.
Nigeria has seldom ever made sense but now it only makes nonsense.
Over 1,000 people were killed and kidnapped but Israel first cut of power and water and has not even invaded Palestine. Yet Tinubu cut power to Niger and wanted to invade for Nigerians’ lives to be lost needlessly over what exactly? The same coup he did under the guise of an election?
A comedian joked that things are so bad in Nigeria that even the proverbial light at the end of the tunnel is out.
The judiciary who are duty bound to safeguard the soul of the nation has abdicated. They lied that INEC didn’t promise to use IREV to mitigate election fraud and they lied that 25% of votes wasn’t constitutionally required in FCT, amongst others.
Thus we have a bizarre spectacle that a fraudster was declared a president by professors and re-declared a president by judges.
The price of legitimising illegitimacy is too high. It has cost us our constitution, our legal system, our democracy and even our common decency, morality and logic as a people.
There was a time General Colin Powell apologised for calling Nigeria “a nation of scammers.” With the scamming of all our unintelligence agencies and legal system by a certified criminal, no apology is now necessary.
Nigeria’s misruling party has done nothing under both Buhari and Tinubu than wasting resources to defend certificateless presidents at home and abroad, for medical tourism and for death, devastation and impoverishment of the citizenry.
Nigeria’s democracy is fraudulent, it’s judiciary reprobate (unable to tell right from wrong) and it’s foundational creed is lies. To sustain a Tinubu presidency, every academic certificate from primary school to national service has been devalued. Basic intelligence from common sense to the lofty constitution is annulled and we find ourselves in the tortured absurdity that the courts have ruled that rules don’t matter in an existential threat to themselves. Sadly right now, the judiciary is not the last hope of the common man but the lost hope of the common man. A nation’s very soul has been sacrificed on the altar of one man’s inordinate ambition.
•Ogebe is a US-based lawyer.