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You are here:Home>>Strategic Research & Analysis>>Bankole and the next generation of treasury looters
Thursday, 16 June 2011 01:05

Bankole and the next generation of treasury looters

Written by Emeka Chiakwelu
Mr. Bankole surrounded by EFCC officials Mr. Bankole surrounded by EFCC officials

Bankole and the next generation of treasury looters: A Great threat to nation building

The alleged financial misappropriation, fraud and loan shenanigan in the hands of the erstwhile Speaker of House of Representative, Mr. Dimeji Bankole is quite troubling. "Bankole is already facing a 16-count charge of allegedly misappropriating N9 billion capital project fund through contract inflation."

Then it was reported by Vanguard newspaper the "ex-Speaker and his colleagues shared the N10 billion loan which was an outcome of an executive session wherein members insisted on enhancing their allowances. According to reports, the members had prevailed on the former Speaker to source and share the N10 billion loan, with Bankole getting about N100 million whereas his deputy got N80 million."

Then coupled to that Bankole and the former deputy Speaker Nafada were accused "over allegations of corrupt enrichment and misappropriation of over N40 billion."

These are no child picnic but massive allegations for a young man of this generation.

It is massively disheartening even to a point of helplessness and hopelessness for Nigeria, not because of the allegedly crime of looting per sec but for the individual that allegedly committed the crime.

Bankole is a young man of this generation and an emerging Nigerian leader by its own right. A man with great prospect, who has already made a great mark in Nigeria’s polity by becoming a Speaker of the House of Representative, the fourth in the line to the presidency, few heartbeats away from the most important and powerful position in the country.

The Bankole’s generation has seen Nigeria at her nadir, without global respect and with compassing corruption running rampant around the contours and foundation of Nigeria. The ramification is nation without direction and vision, a nation where poverty and indiscipline were eating deep into the fabrics of the society. The building blocks of peace, unity and brotherhood were steadily and gradually crumbling.

The country was losing sense of nationhood; it became a society where the might was right and woe to the weak. Nigeria was fast becoming a nation where majority of Nigerians were sinking down to floor of abject and penury poverty. This phenomenon is contrary to a nation endowed with ample human and natural resources - an ocean of affluence and petro-naira.

With the help of providence and prayers of ordinary Nigerians, the country is gradually but steadily emerging from ruin of the past and impermeable darkness. For the first time in the history of the young nation a credible election was held and Nigerians elected leaders of their choice not by selection and imposing leaders on them by the ‘wise men’ of their ‘village’.

This generation expects a whole lot from Bankoles of their generation and when it is proven that Dimeji Bankole committed the allegedly crime of looting, he will become the greatest disappointment so far in his generation. This is a man who should have known better: well educated, exposed to Western civilization of probity and accountability and comes from an affluent background. Why is he committing such a silly and stupendous crime?

This is the man that should raise the flag of Nigeria and hoist it so high that the whole should know that Nigeria is ready to claim her spot under the sun. Instead he chose to take his good name and throw it to the mud.

Bankole has been the role model of so many Nigerian youths since he took over the seat of Speakership, for with eloquence and glowing intellectual alacrity he mesmerized millions of his fellow citizens as he spoke to the press after his swearing in and taking his oath of office.

It is a new Nigeria at least the EFCC is going with full force with the investigation. Inasmuch the EFCC is doing its job; it must not go after him with any personal vendetta or agenda in order to prove any particular point. EFCC must do its job without fear or favor. Demji Bankole as a citizen deserves to be accorded the presumption of innocence until he has been proven guilty in the court of law. This is not to be soft on him but show that Nigerian legal and enforcement authority is in pursue of the truth and nothing but the truth.

Nigeria must look ahead for while punishment is a major deterrent to a crime, it also has its limitations. The current and coming generations of young Nigerians must be inculcated and impacted with values of probity and accountability. Most importantly the inviolability of a high or low office with its given powers and responsibilities must be respected.

Nigeria must find ways and means to encourage the incoming generation of politicians to shun corruption and looting. To build a progressive and corruption- free Nigeria, our youths the leaders of tomorrow must not compromise themselves at the corridors of power.

Emeka Chiakwelu is the principal Policy Strategist at Afripol. Africa Political and Economic Strategic Center (Afripol) is foremost a public policy center whose fundamental objective is to broaden the parameters of public policy debates in Africa. To advocate, promote and encourage free enterprise, democracy, sustainable green environment, human rights, conflict resolutions, transparency and probity in Africa.

 

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