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Sunday 27th September 2020,
Hope for Nigeria

Poverty is a poor adviser

By Denrele Animasaun

“Above all, don’t lie to yourself. The man who lies to himself and listens to his own lie comes to a point that he cannot distinguish the truth within him, or around him, and so loses all respect for himself and for others. And having no respect he ceases to love.” -Fyodor Dostoyevsky

It is often said that what goes around, comes around and how true this has become as the cows come home to roost. If there are any lessons to be learnt, now, is the time for our grab and run politicians, civilians and many others who went on a long gravy train and thought the looting will never end.  A reminder that the time for free lunch is over.

 Dame Patience Jonathan

Dame Patience Jonathan

Well, the tables have turned and it is time to collect. All we hear when collared are protestations, denials, whoppers and cries of how they came by their ill-gotten loot.

Some have denied knowing that there was money in their account but they do not deny spending it; others claimed that the money was distributed, others buy prime properties home and abroad. So these are desperate times, they take to burying the money once the whiff and the long arm of EFCC will come knocking and they too, will take a ride to the clinger.

There is no shame for these looters in fine clothing, in fact, they take it in their stride as they style it out  when arrested, hiding their handcuffs in fine clothing.  And their supporters are ever present, so vocal and they cheer their innocence in spite of hard evidence.  With money like this, one can afford to retain a very good lawyer while they spin some more lies and they insult the people’s intelligence. This is the year of the lawyers, there are many who would need their services and that they will pay top dollar (they have got millions of dollars).

They least expect PMB to pursue the wrong -doers. No wonder they fought tooth and nail to stay on. This trend remain the stuff of fantasy, that these audacious people can steal Commonwealth and cart it out of the country, such humongous sums that should last several lifetimes but it  will never be enough so they go on and on until they are stopped. In a country, many are without health care, shelter, clothing, education, training and employment, in the face abject poverty, insurgency and displacement. This shame comes to bear on the whole country and its people as to why this falsehood went on for so long, now that the robust commonwealth has dwindled to a trickle.

The political elites are a reflection of the society and it is important to admit that things would not change unless there is a collective responsibility and most importantly, politicians have to be held to account. Time for a blank cheque, wanton wholesale corruption, padding and privileges are over, this is not one person’s mess, and this is everybody’s mess.  As the new mantra says, the change begins with me, time to stop expecting other people to make the change, if everybody made some changes, the difference will have a ripple effect.

Seriously, how could many Nigerians claim to be religious while they see and watch others are starving and dying? The reality is; too many people are in financial dire straits and the truth has been distorted for far too long. For so long, a select few have been living the life of O’Reilly and it is no secret, many aspire to be them.

So, the fragrant lady, Patience Jonathan choose to protest that her account has been frozen and had addressed a letter to the Acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) that the $ 31.4 million linked to the financial fraud against Mr. Waripamo Dudafa by EFCC, was for the payment of the medical bills she incurred in London in 2013. Wow, what a whopper! In the letter, Patience Jonathan did come clean that she is indeed, the sole signatory to the four accounts.  In her letter, it reminded the reader that the lady is “a law abiding citizen” So if she is, should she not follow the due process and let the law handle this so that she can be vindicated and reunited with her millions of dollars.

Seriously, what exactly is she saying? That she bailed without paying her medical expenses; this amount is far way beyond any medical bill ever seen or to be believed. Or is the money sitting in the bank to accrue interest, perhaps, the lady was paid for her work as the permanent secretary and first lady post combined. This is some serious amount and she is claiming that the account belongs to her and she wants it back.

The account that was claimed by Mrs Jonathan has been placed on a No Debit Order, in order to investigate the activities of Mr. Waripamo Dudafa,a former Special Adviser on Domestic Affairs to GEJ. So why is the lady in the company of the alleged fraudster?

You would have thought a lady of her standing should have no problem opening accounts, so why, did she need a middle man and how much was he paid to open the account in her name.

How is this possible that Mama Peace is not aware that her money was frozen until, she tried to use her card that must have been humiliating, especially when there are millions in the account? And a man like Dudafa, should know that this is unlawful.

EFCC has accused Dudafa and his affiliates of conspiring to conceal the monies and it is hoped that someone, somewhere will sing like a canary and point fingers at the guilty and the greedy.  The lady has requested that the EFCC lift the ban so that she can pay her medical bills. This the medical bill of 2013, when she was flown out of the country to receive treatment for a mystery illness.  On recovering prolonged illness, she claimed to have died and woken up after seven days:” It was not an easy experience for me. I actually died; I passed out for more than a week. My intestine and tummy were opened. I am not Lazarus but my experience was similar to his. My doctors said all hope was lost.

“A black doctor in London who is with us in this service was flown in when the situation became critical. It was God himself in His infinite mercy that said I will return to Nigeria. The day I came back, I said God I have nothing to say, I offer myself to you. I will be doing things that will touch the lives of the less privileged. God gave me a second chance”

So, perhaps the $ 31.4 Million is for making the lives of the underprivileged children better. I can assure her that the millions of dollars will go a long way. If ever there was a legacy for Patience.  This could be it.

“I’m not upset that you lied to me, I’m upset that from now on I can’t believe you.” ? Friedrich Nietzsche

Big Up Nigerian Paralympic Team

Regard your good name as the richest jewel you can possibly be possessed of — for credit is like fire; when once you have kindled it you may easily preserve it, but if you once extinguish it, you will find it an arduous task to rekindle it again. The way to a good reputation is to endeavour to be what you desire to appear.” ? Socrates

From the opening ceremony, the Nigerian Paralympic team came out in the national colours, you had a feeling that they will do well and that is exactly what they have been doing in Rio. With an impressive clutch of several gold medals, the athletes have inspired many and have shown the nation that there is disability does not limit one’s ability to excel.

The team Captain Lucy Ejike broke the Paralympic and world record in the women’s -61kg powerlifting event, so did Paul Kehinde, in the 65kg men’s category as well as Roland Ezuruike, the silver medallists; Latifat Tijani and Esther Onyema have done so well to lift the spirit of the nation and we look to the Ministry of Sports, to ensure that renewed support is given to the athletes on their return and to commit investment to disability sports so that more winners emerge from Nigeria.

“We must learn to live together as brothers or perish together as fools” ? Martin Luther King Jr.

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