By Reno Omokri
With the recent revelations that Abdulrasheed Maina (a man that former President Jonathan fired from the civil service and declared wanted for allegedly pilfering 100 billion Naira from the Pension funds) was secretly recalled, reinstated and given a juicy position within the Buhari administration, not even the most hardcore Buharist can still harbour any pretence that the present Nigerian government is prosecuting an anti corruption war.
With the reinstatement of Maina, the non-prosecution of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Babachir Lawal, the return of Timipre Sylva’s ‘legally acquired’ 48 mansions and the $25 billion Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (AKA Northern Nigeria Petroleum Corporation) scam, was former President Jonathan not right to have said in 2014 that ‘the choice before Nigerians is between a record of visible achievements and desperate power seekers with empty promises’?
How can you believe that tale by moonlight about Maina from the same Presidency that said rats chased the President from his office? That the President knew about Maina’s return should not even be questioned.
On the Maina issue, the President is as guilty of this charge as a child with chocolate stained mouth. It is an open and shut case that needs no legal reflection. Thank God the Maina family has given a press statement where the spokesman for the family, Malam Aliyu Maina said ‘Abdulrasheed left Nigeria following threats to his life, only for President Muhammadu Buhari to invite him to come and help his administration.’
Speaking further, Malam Maina said “the present administration when they came into power to convince him to come back and assist in its “Change” agenda.”
We have heard it from the horse’s mouth. Maina was brought back to assist President Buhari. Perhaps his looting skills were needed to show NNPC’s Baru how to do things.
Who is fooling who I wonder? Thank God it has come to light that Maina even got a police escort and security detail from the Department of State Security. Yet with all these overwhelming evidence against his boss, Garba Shehu, President Buhari’s spokesman still has the audacity to accuse the Jonathan administration of somehow being responsible for the Maina reinstatement.
Can you imagine? Even after Malami, the Attorney General of the Federation, has confessed, the shameless Garba Shehu is still blaming Jonathan.
One day they will blame Jonathan for impregnating their wives! The real question we should be asking is this – did the Buhari administration sacrifice Maina to the press and Nigerians to divert attention from the alleged $25 billion scam at NNPC?
In fact, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (AKA armed wing of the All Progressive Congress) that refused to even investigate the NNPC $25 billion scam must think we are all children.
I say that because they waited for the media to cry out before sealing off Maina’s alleged $2 million house. Why now? Did the house also run away to Dubai prior to this week? Or is it that the EFCC did not know the address of the house before this week?
Whoever is writing this bad Nollywood script for President Buhari should quit and be replaced with a renowned screenwriter like Zeb Ejiro, who has experience coming up with believable stories!
The truth is now obvious. The anti-corruption credential of the Buhari military government of 1983-85 emanated from Tunde Idiagbon and not from Muhammadu Buhari, the ‘Abacha did not loot’ man!
The Buhari administration is as anti-corrupt as Farouk Lawan’s cap that harboured dollars instead of a head during its brief foray into banking at Femi Otedola’s house.
There are so so so many questions begging to be answered. How much of his loot did Maina, the alleged pension looter, donate to the All Progressive Congress to make the anti-corruption administration of President Muhammadu Buhari recall and reinstate him?
Did President Buhari recall Maina and make him head of Human Resources in the Internal Affairs ministry for the purpose of recruiting more looters for his hopefully ill-fated re-election campaign?
Now they are blaming the head of service for reinstating Maina, the same way they blamed Vice President Osinbajo for approving the $25 billion NNPC contract scam. And just like Osinbajo, the head of service has denied it.
What does that say about this government’s credibility? President Buhari has as much hope of winning his so called anti-corruption war as a Nancy boy has of defeating herdsmen who are terrorizing Nigerians (oops! I forgot, they are ‘criminals, not terrorists) Like I said to Tunde Alabi of BEN Television who interviewed me on the 23rd of October 2017, “In Nigeria’s 57 years post-independence history, no other administration has been as corrupt and incompetent as the Muhammadu Buhari government”.
No wonder BusinessDay in a recent editorial called the Buhari regime “corrupt” and “inept”. This administration makes Ali Baba and the forty thieves look like choirboys.
Since president Buhari is widely known as ‘baba’, I would have called his government Ali Baba and the forty thieves but I fear a libel suit from the descendants of Ali Baba who would not want me to sully their ancestor’s name by connecting it with the name of Buhari, the head of the Federal Propaganda Government of Corruption.
So instead of calling him Ali Baba, I will tweak the name a bit and call President Buhari, Ali Bubu. In a government of Ali Bubu and the 40 thieves, it is very hard to convince anyone, that Ali Bubu, who leads the 40 thieves, is himself not a thief.
After this Maina episode, I have genuine fears that one day we may hear that the Buhari government has resurrected the notorious armed robber, Lawrence Anini, and made him Chief of Staff to the President. It is possible.
After all, this administration and corruption are like 5 and 6. You cannot have one without the other following closely behind. And not only has President Muhammadu Buhari destroyed his reputation as a corruption fighter before Nigerians and the international community, he has also helped destroy the reputation of people around him.
Take Babatunde Raji Fashola, the immediate past governor of Lagos state, for example. Fashola once said that a serious government will fix the power sector in six months. Since he has been the minister of power for two years and the sector has not been fixed and has rather gotten worse, can we conclude that both Fashola and the government in which he serves are unserious?
I would have said that President Buhari has also destroyed his party’s reputation, but as Professor Itse Sagay recently proved to us, the APC does not have a reputation, so how can you destroy what does not exist? And consider that six APC Governors who owe massive backlog of salaries, including Nasir El-Rufai of Kaduna (who owes salaries and pensions) went to Anambra to ask Anambrarians to vote for the APC gubernatorial candidate against a Willie Obiano who is not owing salaries!
But the worst reputation self-destruction is what is happening to our very own dear pastor Yemi Osinbajo who went to Anambra to lie that $2 billion had been paid by the Buhari administration for the Second Niger Bridge. The Vice President not only lied about the amount involved, but Osinbajo forgot to mention that the 2 billion Naira (not dollars) that was paid for the Second Niger Bridge came from the Sovereign Wealth Fund that was set up by the Jonathan administration with great opposition (including going to court to try to stop the SWF) from APC.
I am so disappointed in some Nigerians. After pro-democracy activists and staunch democrats paid a steep sacrificial price to liberate Nigeria from the clutches of an Abacha, hell bent on self-succession, some Nigerians so cheaply fell for Abachaesque propaganda and ended up electing a slimmer and taller version of that nasty piece of work that was Sani Abacha.
Talk of a dog returning to its vomit! What would MKO and Kudirat Abiola, Chief Alfred Rewane and General Shehu Musa Yar’adua think if they suddenly come back to life to see that the man who famously deified their killer and declared that ‘Abacha did not loot’ was sitting in Nigeria’s driver’s seat driving her backwards and downwards.
Nigeria has gone backwards and downwards in every indicator of the human development index. Our people now earn less than they did before Buhari deceived his way into power in 2015.
This is even as they now pay significantly more for food, fuel, electricity, aviation, taxes and even things as commonplace as data and mobile phone calls. When I used to read the oft repeated quote that ‘a nation deserves the leaders it gets’ I never internalized what it actually meant until Nigeria elected her own punishment all the while thinking she had voted for her saviour.
But there were tell-tale signs that we would not have missed had we not been so drunk to the point of oblivion on Lai Mohammed’s propaganda that could only have been cooked up from the pit of hell.
For one, how was a man who had to take a bank loan to pay for his APC Presidential nomination form in 2014 able to educate ALL his teenage and young adult children in the U.K?
Secondly, how could a man who could not make a success of his own private business and spectacularly ran it aground, be in a position to make a success of the nation’s economy and manage it profitably?
But an even more important question is this: How could a man who vowed to show ‘openly and within me a total commitment to the Sharia movement’ be expected to respect those aspects of the Nigerian Constitution that conflict with his ‘total commitment to the sharia movement’?
A man who insisted that a probe must be initiated into the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation over the claims by the then Central Bank of Nigeria Governor, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, that monies totaling over $12 billion had not been reconciled with the federation account is now singing a different tune when it has been revealed, almost beyond all reasonable doubt, that the NNPC, of whom he is the supervising minister, had awarded $25 billion worth of contracts without due process.
This is a man who insists that the world’s fourth deadliest terrorists (as adjudged by no less a body as the World Economic Forum) are mere criminals while one of the world’s non-violent freedom movements are terrorists!
At least the real Ali Baba, of the forty thieves fame, knew how to count. This Ali Bubu, of the NNPC $25 billion fame, doesn’t. He thinks 97% plus 5% equals 100%. No wonder his school certificate is so valuable that he prefers to hire 10 Senior Advocates of Nigeria to ensure that he never has to produce it.
After all, his word is enough that he has a certificate! We should believe the same man who used his gap toothed mouth to condemn public servants who go abroad for health care at public expense yet ended up being Africa’s biggest spending health tourist to London!
Let me conclude by saying that it is an exercise in mindless optimism to expect any good thing to come from the man who Senator Shehu Sani famously indicted for using insecticide to fight corruption in the People’s Democratic Party and deodorant to fight it amongst APC members.
No matter how sweet it is between your wife’s leg, it should never make you forget the woman from between whose legs you came into this world. The stream that forgets the river that is its source soon dries up. Remember to honor your parents if you want God’s blessings. And remember that the challenge of marrying a slay queen is that you pay for her. The blessing of marrying a pray queen is that she prays for you #RenosNuggets