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Thursday, 27 August 2015

Politicians And Preachers, Six And Half A Dozen

President Buhari has fished out, potentially, his first significant big fish in his anti-corruption war, Sambo Dasuki, who is pictured above, a retired colonel of the Nigerian army. Mr Dasuki, recently relieved of his post as the national security adviser, NSA, has been accused of illegally possessing weapons which were seized during a raid of his house last month, and other charges are expected to follow.
He was the NSA from just over three years ago, and notoriously called for the postponement of the presidential elections, previously scheduled for February 15, to March 28, citing security reasons, and also to enable the army to mount a most intense offensive against the book haram insurgents to ensure elections were held in their three stronghold states of Borno, Yobe and Adamawa. While the call was not well received by the general populace, it did serve its purpose, and fears that the postponement was to allow the incumbent, Goodluck Jonathan, to perfect plans to rig the elections were doused when Buhari won the elections.
My interest in this story is the fact that Mr Sambo is a muslim like president Buhari, as well as being from the northern part of the country. In this piece by Professor Adesanmi, he aptly warned that:
"hey, listen up you fundamentalist christian: when the war begins to consume your goats, don't bother to mobilize your religious bullcrap in defence of your own christian goats o. Ehen. We shall remind you that Buhari and Sambo Dasuki are both muslims."
He hit the nail on the head, because, it is a normal occurrence in Nigeria that as soon as anyone is charged with any crime like Mr Dasuki, members of his ethnic group, political party (if not the same as that of the president), and religion will come out, guns blazing, citing persecution due to the ethnic, political or religious differences with the president. Nobody has really raised any dust, since Mr Dasuki is a muslim and also from the north. And the warning from Professor Adesanmi comes at a very auspicious time. Calls for the prosecution of pastor Ayo Oritsejafor, and his benefactor, former president Jonathan, whose administration president Buhari has said he will probe may see ethnic and religious jingoists come out in full swing if any of them are charged, since they are both southern christians.
I continue to maintain that the politicians and religious leaders in Nigeria are only aligned by a common denominator - lucre - which is their ethnicity, political party and religion all rolled into one. The politicians milk the nation's treasury, and the pastors milk their congregation. When they (politicians and preachers) come together, and they always do, they accentuate each other's ability to separate Nigerians from their money. All differences are forgotten, for they have the strongest of motivations to weld them together. It is this bond that we must break if we are to save Nigeria from the aggressive cancer of corruption.