Second Republic governor of Kaduna State, Alhaji Balarabe Musa has accused President Goodluck Jonathan of undermining the nation’s anti-corruption crusade with his seeming protection of the embattled Minister of Aviation, Princess Stella Oduah, who is under the spotlight for her alleged involvement in the purchase of two bulletproof cars at the cost of N255 million.
Speaking at a brief ceremony to mark his 77th birthday at his Kaduna residence yesterday, Musa said that the President’s trip to Israel in company of Ms. Oduah and the National Security Adviser, Col. Sambo Dasuki (rtd), who is a member of the three-man administrative panel set-up to investigate the allegation, was a clear indication that Mr. Jonathan was not interested in unraveling the mystery behind the purchase of the vehicles.
Looking disappointed, the former governor said that despite the allegations against the minister, the President still included her on his delegation to Israel in company of the NSA.
He said “we believe that this was done to pave way for negotiations to take place so that she can be left off the hook. Why should the President travel with her and the NSA? Could he not have gone with another person? Tafawa Balewa and other past leaders would not have done that.
“Why should the President of a country fighting corruption behave in such a way to suggest a cover-up in this case involving Stella Oduah? Whoever appears to cover up a corrupt person is himself corruptible. This is suggestive of the fact that the government has practically insinuated that the fight against corruption is a hoarse”.
Musa, who was leader of the Conference of Nigerian Political Parties (CNPP), a coalition of opposition parties, however, said that for the nation to get out of the woods, leaders must learn to make public interest their cardinal objective rather than personal interest which has become the order of public service in the country today.
According to him, in today’s Nigeria, “we are led by thieves, except for a few who are still honest”.
He noted that anybody who is a councillor or legislator, governor or President ends up serving self and becoming the richest person in the constituency that elected him.
“The situation today is such that we have leaders who are really thieves and if you doubt it, let me remind you that anybody who is able to become a councillor in Nigeria or a member of a state House of Assembly or Senate, governor or president ends up serving himself to the extent that he becomes the richest in his constituency”.
“A councillor in most parts of Nigeria is the richest person in his ward. The president in Nigeria, whoever he is, will be the richest in the country by the time he leaves office even if he is the son of a grass cutter hunter. This means that truly the leaders in Nigeria are thieves,” he said.