State Of The Nation: Just as the earthquakes and tsunamis that despoil other countries…Nigeria’s political leaders are our own genre of ‘natural disasters’.

The Nigerian prayer, therefore, is:

May they not do any more damage than have already been done and may the people of Nigeria rise up to their responsibility as owners of the nation’s sovereignty.

In the last years, the catch phrase ‘fight against corruption’ which endeared people to this administration has turned out to be what it has always been – just a phrase. The exercise of loot recovery, witch-hunting and selective sanctions meted on perceived perpetrators of economic and financial crimes is a mockery of the anti-corruption crusade. This is because corruption cannot be fought in an omnibus and fraudulent federal system built on a faulty super structure. There is urgent need to redefine and systematize the fight against corruption. To address the challenge of profligacy and sheer wastefulness amongst public office holders, public offices at all levels must be made less attractive. And all acts of corruption must be made to have consequences.

In this regard, Nigerians expect to see law enforcement in action. More people need to be brought to book; corrupt enrichment and disbursement of state treasures and privileges to further personal interests, under whatever guise, should be properly investigated and defaulters diligently prosecuted. Moreover, Nigerians hope to see that the idea of public service as a commitment to the common good is matched by action.

Given the alarming quantity of small arms finding their way into the country as well as the terror perpetrated by killer herdsmen and the lingering platoons of a spent Boko Haram hitting at soft targets in the north east, it is certain that the polity is still charged with fear. This fear is further heightened by the unjustified militarisation of other parts of the country undeserving of such security presence. The government must ensure that the Nigerian people have the freedom to exercise their franchise as free agents capable of making moral choices for their personal and corporate security and to enjoy temporal good and have basic human quality of life. In this regard, the security operatives must be seen to be representative of the organic security of the Nigerian people and not a militia converted to serve a group of persons or a certain ethnic group.

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