The Rivers State Governor, Chibuike Amaechi, on Thursday came down heavily on the Goodluck Jonathan administration, alleging that it has institutionalised corruption in Nigeria.
Mr. Amaechi also warned that there would be anarchy if the 2015 general elections were not free, fair and credible because Nigerians had made up their mind to embrace change.
In a lecture he delivered at the 2nd Peoples Media Limited Conference in Abuja, the governor lamented that rather than fighting corruption, the Jonathan administration punished those who do.
The lecture titled, The Metaphor of Change and the Politics of 2015, was delivered on behalf of Mr. Amaechi by the Rivers State Information Commissioner, Ibim Semenitari, who said the governor was attending the National Summit of the All Progressives Congress, APC, which also held in Abuja.
The governor, who assessed the various regimes in the country from that of Tafawa Balewa in the First Republic to the current one, said corruption was not a repository of the military alone, stating that the politicians were also experts at it.
He singled out the administration of former President Olusegun Obasanjo for institutionalising the fight against corruption for the first time in the history of Nigeria through the creation of a state agency, Economic and Financial Crimes Corruption, EFCC.
The governor, however, spoke about President Jonathan institutionalizing corruption amongst other things
“The progress made in fighting corruption began to erode under President (Umaru) Yar’Adua. His short-lived regime cannot be assessed in this wise. Currently in the present regime of President Goodluck Jonathan corruption appears to have been institutionalised.” Mr. Amaechi said. “A whopping sum of $20 billion (N3.2 trillion) is alleged to be missing. The stories of both fuel and kerosene subsidy are nothing to behold; it reeks of corruption and rottenness. The aviation bullet-proof saga remains unresolved. The Shell-Malabu story is a macabre dance. The response of the regime to corruption is to imprison those exposing corruption.”
“Kidnapping is an everyday affair in the Niger Delta. It becomes strange, any day it does not occur. Political assassination is also on the rise. Violence is the order of the day,” the governor pointed out.
“We top the list with a figure of 8.6 million -10 million out of school children. Education is not affordable and accessible. Education infrastructures are deteriorating or non-existent. Beyond the education infrastructure are the softer issues, insufficient, poorly trained and ill-motivated teachers, a static curriculum, a lack of monitoring and quality control to ensure that education is not only available but is fit for purpose, competitive and qualitative. The result is that our children leave school, half baked at best and uneducated at worst.”
“Although these rights are enshrined in the country’s Constitution, it is crucial that the rights are ensured and protected by government as well as the citizens themselves,” he said.
The governor stated that good governance was the responsibility of every democratic government working in the interest of the public, as was the smooth handing over of batons from one administration to another.
According to him, Nigeria was at the threshold of history with yet again another election, stressing that the electorate was already demanding a better deal.
He said, “The Electorate is already demanding a better deal. The poll commissioned by the All Progressive Congress being unveiled today has shown that more than half of those polled insist that they are dissatisfied with the status quo and want change. The message is clear: the people want to be allowed a chance to freely make up their mind about who should lead them.”
He however said in political circles, the drums of war and voices of intolerance was a source of worry because of the determination of the Federal Government controlled People’s Democratic Party, PDP, to guarantee free, fair and transparent elections in 2015.
“In political circles the drums of war and voices of intolerance gives cause for worry about the determination of the Federal Government controlled People’s Democratic Party to guarantee free, fair and transparent elections in 2015. It is crucial that the elite and those of us in government understand that disallowing free elections would not just be an albatross but could be an invitation to anarchy,” he said.
Source: Premium Times