I delayed writing this article as I was expecting a rebuttal from the affected party. As at the time I post, there were two drafts, one was written in the hope of a rebuttal, the other in case there was no rebuttal. Well, we know now there was no rebuttal. It really wouldn’t have mattered though. The reason for waiting for the rebuttal was to ensure that both sides of the story were heard.
I am sure by now you all have heard about the alleged forgery of her NYSC exemption certificate by the Minister of finance Mrs Adeosun. The expose by Premium Times indicated that the National Assembly had a damaging evidence on her and were using this evidence to blackmail the Minister to release public funds to them.
Amazing was my first conclusion when I read the expose, I however refrained as I wanted to sample public opinion and get a feel of what would happen. Unfortunately, there was bewilderment and then resignation that despite this expose, nothing would happen. Shocking as that might seem, you only have to understand that this is Nigeria.
Herein lies the problem. We have a dysfunctional system that rewards criminals, dishonest folks and now forgers it seems. Apparently, another official in the administration, Okoi Obono-Obla (the Chairman of Special Investigation Panel on Recovery of Public Property and Senior Special Assistant on Prosecution to the President) had submitted fake WAEC results. Noticing a trend? I assure you that you are not alone. Our dear president had a “similar” case.
For all intent and purposes, I await Mrs Adeosun’s rebuttal, but tick tock goes the clock, and all we have heard so far is a claim by NYSC that she had applied for exemption and they are carrying out checks on their database to confirm.
I would expect NYSC to realize that the citizenry are not stupid though. Carrying out checks from their database which is electronic by the way according to them should take just a few keystrokes on the keyboard. That they are yet to confirm shows an inclination on their part to “collude” and save the minister. These are of course assumptions on my part but I wouldn’t be surprised what the outcome of this issue will be.
It will be an indictment on the current administration if this expose is not investigated and a logical conclusion is that we are at the very edge of condoling criminality in our nation.
Could it be that all along, we have donned the toga of a failed state, where there are no repercussions for misdeeds? What are we bequeathing to the coming generations? A legacy of forgery? At this very moment, there are outcries about examination malpractices, bribery, corruption and killings. How is this any different?
The present government can still redeem its image, by doing what is right and allowing the law to take its cause. Mrs Adeosun should also take a cue from the British government where high ranking officials have resigned, though not due to being accused of a crime. Image and perception matters a lot, and at the moment the image and perception of the government is showing a complicit and ineffectual government.
Let us not forget also, that this incidence shows gross incompetence on the part of various agencies of government and criminal intent on the part of the National Assembly, and all must be brought to book for their involvement.