by Isi Esene
Well now you know it – it’s the impunity.
President Goodluck Jonathan on Wednesday urged the country’s anti-graft agencies to do more in their fight against corruption promising to assist them in any capacity to carry out their legal duties.
He said this at the Presidential Villa while swearing into office the chairman of the Independent Corrupt Practices and other related Offences Commission (ICPC), Okon Nta, and five new permanent secretaries.
Those sworn-in as permanent secretaries include Folasade Yemi-Esan, Sani Bala, James Obiegbu, Femi Jegede and John Gana.
The president asked the ICPC to check what he described as outright stealing of public funds by public officers.
Jonathan said, “I know as somebody who read widely about animals that human beings are born greedy by nature. But we must stop people from stealing and taking what does not belong to them.
“In any society that you allow people lose, you see people doing the wrong thing. So, we must stop people from doing the wrong thing.
“I also use this opportunity to appeal to all Nigerians, for us really to confront corruption the way we want to, everybody must be involved.
“All arms of government, the judiciary, the parliament must be involved; all individuals and all corporate bodies including NGOs, civil societies, community-based organizations and even faith-based organizations.
“If people donate money to you that you are not too sure of the source of money, please, return it.
“If we must fight corruption, all of us must frown at it. You don’t give a chieftaincy title to somebody you don’t know the source of income.
“That is my thinking; that is my belief. If you do that, you are encouraging that person to be corrupt,” he said.
The president reportedly went further to express his confidence in the integrity of the ICPC and reiterated his resolve not to interfere in their activities.
He said, ““As a president, I promise you that I will give you the free hand to do your work. I will not interfere with your function.”
We wonder what constitutes ‘outright stealing’ , according to the president, and what does not.