Tijani Sheriffdeen: Tackling Corruption In Nigeria From The Foundation

Youths are claiming they are no longer the leaders of tomorrow, that they are the leaders of today. Their claims and agitations have only succeeded in falling to the deaf ears of the ruling class, who are arguably fathers and grandfathers. It seems there is a reason for them not paying attention to the wails of these youths; does a father stop a child from leadership responsibilities in the family when he or she is old enough to put legs into the shoes?  The answer depends on the actions and inactions of the father, if the father is living an exemplary life that the child has gained immensely from, then there is no problem at all, as the child only continues with the right steps that have been laid. But what happens when the father is doing otherwise? He wouldn’t want the child to come in, so as for the bad legacy not to continue. But then, won’t the child grow again?

 Our leaders seem to be afraid they are not teaching the right lessons to the coming generation, and as such are afraid the coming in of youths my take the worse turn. The question then is, are the youths cladded in the ways of these fathers? If they are, am afraid these fathers are right with their assumption, but if they aren’t, what went wrong? How did the change come about? Corruption has not only tattooed the fabric of Nigeria, it has dyed it that there is almost no space for changes to come in. The problem is one that we don’t know if changes can occur again. In the times of thought, a man who is also a father stepped forward to help us out, as he believes dyes haven’t stained the fabric of this country completely, and as such he wants to come in to bleach the stained part of the fabric. Bleach? Yes, he said he wants to reshape the country. Would this at least create another perspective for our youths to see things rightly? So that they may thread the good path of selflessness, patriotism and compassion!

During the president’s election campaign in 2015, he vowed to fight against corruption and insecurity if elected to office as the President of Nigeria. The youths among other Nigerians, who wanted the right pictures to substitute the wrong ones in their frame taught it was only wise to give this man a chance, and then he was given the power to lead the country blessed with over 160 million people and her plenitude of mineral resources. Since his inception, the anti-graft war has remained unshakable, as he is doing everything in his capacity to bleach the stain on our country’s fabric. It would be necessary to ask at this point if the President is actually fighting corruption or corrupt persons. The reason for asking this question is to know if President Buhari intends not to smell corruption during his tenure alone, and to only leave office for it to come alive again, just has a fatigued man would come alive after a refreshing session with Chivita fruit juice.

There has being a number of cases reported, like the $2 billion arms deal that wasn’t used for its cause, also, the case of the former chairman of Pension Reform Task, AbdulRasheed Maina who was charged with alleged embezzlement, misappropriation and looting of police pension funds, and the invitation of Femi Fani-Kayode by EFCC for alleged #800 million campaign funds of the PDP among others. These are proves that the President is fighting corrupt figures and not corruption. Nobody is saying this is wrong, but what is important here is that the branches that are being cut off could sprout again, if the trees to these branches are not taken care of. Corruption is now an institution in Nigeria, and should be treated as one. Let the foundation of corruption be looked into, not its roof. If the hands of a number of people are cut-off successfully without structures causing corruption being looked into, then the government in town has failed in its promise to make Nigeria a corrupt free society.

The recent check of the judicial arm of our country has been drawing in a lot of comments. A part says the procedure that was employed in the investigation of the judges doesn’t follow the rule of law. This party feels the judges are not ordinary people though not above the law, thus, should be investigated if need be through the right channel. The other class to which many others fall into believe there is absolutely nothing wrong about the way the judges have been checked, saying nobody is above the law. These people are particular about why the arm that sees to corrupt offenses and other crimes would be involved in corruption. So they feel if these people are guilty, they shouldn’t hide under any law but dance to the tone of the music. Where are we going in Nigeria? What are the youths discerning from all these episodes?

Tijani Sheriffdeen is an undergraduate student of the University of Ilorin.

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