Any serious political leader who wants to fight corruption sincerely must first be intellectual enough to understand that corruption is an economy, just like poverty is an idea created by the ruling class.
In fact, corruption is a trillion dollar economy especially in Nigeria. It has a long chain of distribution and I would try to transcribe it the way I have it in my ever-busy head.
There is a civil servant who has had to falsify his age so as to elongate his stay in the civil service in almost every family in Nigeria. Anyone is free to contest this, but I know many of my lecturers who sit in class because they are already weak due to old age. They are 70+ physically but 60 on paper.
There is this contractor who collects mobilisation fee for a job but does not mobilise anything. He gets the fee, sends part of it to his old woman in the village to share among his ‘village people’ who can die for him to live.
Because he has ‘money’, he was ordained an elder in church and all his ‘generous’ donations towards the work of God earned him the front seat and all the youth in church want his phone number.
His brother calls every weekend from UNILAG and sister from Covenant University for allowances. His younger brother has a girlfriend who is threatening to leave him if he is not ‘man enough’ to buy her iPhone X. That then became the reason the UNILAG school fees changed to N150,000 on his own portal.
For supporting a politician during elections, this man was given 10 job slots at the Federal Ministry of Works. He got the slots and filled all of them with people who don’t come to work but they get salary alerts first, even before those at work. They have families to cater for too.
There is this big club on the Island that would be out of business if this big man does not show up at least once in a week. The manager has his number on his ‘favourite list’ to secure his own survival and his family. Banks give him loans without any collateral and he dictates when to even pay.
And the chain continues like that. Most times, one can’t state the end of this ‘economic distribution’.
It would then be impolitic of any leader to fight this robust ‘economy’ by just jailing the direct thief (contractor) and not creating an ALTERNATIVE ECONOMY and IDEA for the ‘indirect thieves’; those who are mere benefactors of the loot, and are admirers of the looter. They would surely fight back.
By creating an alternative economy, you would be making automatic whistle-blowers of the ‘indirect thieves’.
Let those who gain from the direct thief be able to feed well, enjoy basic things of life without sweating, work and get paid living wage promptly, enjoy the best infrastructure — roads, schools and bridges — so that their life spans aren’t shortened by excessive traffic jam.
Let all these be in place and people would point to thieves in the area.
Of course, all of these require enough intellectual capacity and not ‘Buhari’.
Opinion AddThis : Original Author : Olorunfemi Adeyeye Disable advertisements :