By Dirisu Yakubu & Victoria Ojeme
ABUJA-National Chairman of the African Democratic Congress (ADC), Chief Okey Nwosu has dismissed President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration anti-corruption war describing it as scandalous, selective and a crusade targeted mainly at opposition political figures in the land.
Nwosu whose party joined 38 others to sign a memorandum of understanding a fortnight ago to field a joint Presidential candidate to confront the All Progressives Congress (APC) likely flag bearer, President Muhammadu Buhari in the 2019 Presidential election, told our correspondent that what the federal government was doing is running after leaders of other parties in the name of fighting corruption while protecting those in the corridors of power.
He said: “When you are in APC, you are not corrupt but when you are in any other party, you are corrupt. This is the most scandalous way to fight corruption and it is not even fighting corruption because if you ask Nigerians on the street, they can point out a lot of persons who are serving in this administration that are very corrupt.”
According to the ADC boss, President Buhari must muster the courage to sanction government officials with soiled hands, stressing that until this is done, the notion that the first citizen is a man of integrity would be up there for debate. He berated the Presidency for failing to make public the findings of the panel set up to investigate allegations of graft against the immediate past Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Babachir Lawal, saying such developments have left not a few Nigerians to take the current administration’s fight against corruption with a pinch of salt.
“At times, people say the President is not corrupt. If you come here and I say I am not corrupt but everybody around me is corrupt, it would be difficult to say I am not corrupt. Do not forget that it was after the media took up the contract award issue that the National Assembly rose against the then SGF and government was forced to set up a committee. Till today, the report of the committee has not been made public. It means if you stole N500 million or N2 billion for instance; is it just okay. Is that how to fight corruption?” he asked.
Nwosu also tasked anti-graft institutions and the Minister of Finance, Kemi Adeosun to offer Nigerians some explanations on the use of monies they claimed to have recovered from corrupt elements, saying until this is done; it would be difficult to convince Nigerians that the recovered monies would not be re-looted.
“The anti corruption agencies and the minister of finance, are complicit in this matter. They keep saying monies have been recovered but are these amounts documented? Do they have records of monthly recoveries? They are bullying some people to collect money while some other persons in this administration are carting away the money. So they are not fighting corruption; they are just playing politics with our lives,” he added.