by Abdullahi Aborode
One of our major problems in Nigeria is that competent, selfless and responsible people have refused to serve our fatherland. Over the years we’ve had excuses like “I’ll be killed”, “It is all corrupt there”, “Only I can’t make the difference” etc. Now let us ask ourselves this question; will there be solution if we all sit back and let the incompetent ruin us?
Mallam Nuhu Ribadu has come under various attacks by different people for his appointment by the Federal Government as the chairman for the Petroleum Revenue Task Force. Why is this? Is it that anybody that is ready to serve Nigeria automatically becomes a criminal? Let’s remember we have until 2015 before we can change government. Do we expect things to get worse and expect a miracle when an opposition party gets there? We all know our politicians will tell us “the previous government had emptied the treasury, there’s no money for us to spend” this is all we hear on and on. This has to stop! We need more capable people in government to avert this.
I’m not a Goodluck Jonathan sympathiser, but I believe everyone deserves a benefit of doubt. If Jonathan has said he wants a transformation, then we should proffer him suggestions and possible solutions in achieving this. We gain nothing when we criticise and hope it get worse, as patriots we should be critics with solutions. “Don’t find a fault, find a remedy” – Henry Ford. Mallam Nasir El-Rufai has been criticising the government and has been giving brilliant suggestions. That is what we want. Why not bring and be the change?
It has been observed that in Nigeria most “competent” people get into government and get the “virus” as we have seen in Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Sanusi, Abati amongst others. But one thing is; we have been confusing competence with integrity. El Rufai, Buhari, Tam David West and a host of others that are much respected by the general public today once served under different ‘corrupt’ governments, why are they not tagged like the Ngozis? They served the people not the government. That is where integrity comes in. Ngozi was brainy and competent but she has shown that she lacks integrity!
Ribadu having worked under former President Olusegun Obasanjo made a great impression (debatable depending on your view). He showed competence, he stepped on toes (selective or not). What is important is he dragged our nation away from the world corruption index by a wide margin, since he left the EFCC we’ve not been able to hear successful cases. I see nothing wrong if this same person is appointed by Jonathan to oversee the Petroleum Revenue Task Force which is almost similar to Petroleum Trust Fund that Buhari oversaw in the times of Abacha. Gen Buhari worked under a tyrant but he didn’t go astray, he did his job amidst irregularities and corruption in the system. So what is wrong if you feel you are competent enough to serve your nation?
We have seen a lot of opposition parties, all they do is come on newspapers, television, radio etc and speak against the current government, what moves have they made to form a grand alliance and save us from the PDP? They lack the moral rights to speak because they have compounded to our problems too because of their ego. Few weeks back an ACN member was selected to assist our dear nation by being a member of the Petroleum Industry Bill task force, he turned it down because he was occupied by his party affairs. Is the party bigger than we Nigerians? How does helping your people affect your political party? Oh! You want to see the present party fall totally, have you forgotten this is affecting we the masses more? Why not put your positive input, if it’s not acknowledged then you resign!
My only problem with the appointment his that he’ll be reporting to the minister for petroleum, it would have been better if Jonathan can put him in an independent role so he can do his job well and we’ll know who to point fingers to if anything goes wrong.
In my own opinion, there is nothing wrong with Ribadu taking up an appointment with the current government in as much as he’s willing to serve the nation. If we keep kicking against people with good will to help the nation, then we are rendering ourselves to more danger. If you’ve got something to offer, then come out gallantly and do!
“If there is any one secret of success, it lies in the ability to get the other person’s point of view and see things from that person’s angle as well as from your own”
– Henry Ford