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Friday, 21 October 2016
How 55 Nigerians stole N1.3tn under GEJ revealed by PACAC
The Presidential Advisory Committee Against Corruption made this known in its report of activities from August 2015 to July 2016, presented by its Executive Secretary Prof Bolaji Owasanoye.
PACAC said corruption brought Nigeria under to its knees under GEJ. The report says: “His (Jonathan’s) tolerance of corruption was reflected in the sunset of activities of anti-corruption agencies under his watch and exponential increase of other vices no doubt fuel by corruption. For example, it is widely believed that insecurity escalated because of the massive embezzlement of $2bn through the Office of the National Security Adviser, Col. Dasuki, who allegedly diverted the money appropriated to fight insurgency. . . The problems in the downstream sector of the petroleum industry reached zenith with multi-billion dollars subsidy scams while GEJ looked the other way. At the same time, other vices spread like cancer – kidnapping, import duty waivers, financial recklessness, a profligate legislature, corrupt judiciary, etc. . . There was no single high profile conviction under his watch yet there were allegations of high profile corruption within his cabinet. His legendary comment that stealing is not corruption underscored his perspective on corruption and remains a watershed in the history of anti-corruption crusade in Nigeria. . . PACAC said using World Bank rates, one-third of the N1.3tn allegedly stolen by only 55 people in 7 years could have provided 635.18km of roads, built 36 ultra-modern hospitals, built and furnished 183 schools, educated 3,974 people from primary to tertiary level (at N25.2m per child) and built 20,062 units of 2-bedroom houses. . . The committee noted that while Obasanjo established key anti-corruption agencies which led to high-profile convictions even though “his actions were not above board”, the crusade against corruption went comatose from 2007 “largely due to leadership deficit”. . . Owasanoye said due to corruption, a few Nigerians were richer than their states, while plea bargaining was abused as people who stole the country dry were given slaps on the wrist and asked to go home.