Published on Nov 16, 2017 Greenbarge Reporters
National leader of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, has confessed that the Muhammadu Buhari’s government has not won the war against large scale corruption in the country.
“I would be lying if I said the war against large-scale corruption has been won.”
Tinubu, who delivered a key-note address at the launching of a book written by the three Presidential spokes men, Femi Adesina, Garba Shehu and Laolu Akande at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, acknowledged however that President Buhari has set out to root out the dangerous phenomenon.
“It will take time and countless swings of the axe to fall such a deeply-rooted tree. But try we must. This is what the President is doing.
“Gone are the times when a minister can pilfer billions of dollars as easy as plucking a piece of candy from the table.”
The APC leader said that the previous government used the public treasury “as a private hedge fund or a charity that limited its giving only to themselves.
“So much money grew feet and ran away faster than Usain Bolt ever could. That which could have been spent on national development was squandered in ways that would cause the devil to blush.
“One minister and her rogues’ gallery picked the pocket of this nation for billions of dollars. While poor at governance, these people could give a master thief lessons in the sleight of hand. In governance, they earned a red card but in the corruption, they won the gold medal.
“It was not that our institutions had become infected by corruption. Corruption had become institutionalized.”
“We have much to do to combat this disease. Not only must we track down the takers. In the long term, we must review the salaries of public servants and create universal credits for our people to reduce temptation.
“We must also take greater care by placing people of character, competence and goodness into key positions. When they fail, they must be removed without remorse or favor.
“Unlike its predecessor, this government has demonstrated the will to walk this path. While this might not cause much fanfare or celebration, this cleanses the institutions upon which a nation’s wellbeing is founded with a future assured.”
Asiwaju Tinubu said that the economy had remained the nation’s biggest long-term challenge.
“The prior government operated during times of plenty. The opposite is the case now. Sadly, that plenty was stolen or directed toward policies of no lasting consequence to the average Nigerian save to compel them to say another opportunity had been wasted.
“Through no fault of its own, this administration had to grapple with a rapid fall in oil prices.
“That fall brought recession and collapsed our exchange rate regime. More fundamentally, it showed that the very economic model upon which this nation operated was outmoded and flawed. Unfortunately the past administration did nothing to re-calibrate the economy.
“With fewer resources at hand, this government is compelled to do more. It must respond to immediate needs in a way that leads to long-term economic reform.
“This will be a complex journey. This government has taken the first steps in the right direction.
“We are inching out of recession. The exchange rate has stabilized. Internationally, we are seen as on the mend and have been recognized for making significant progress in the ease of doing business.”
Tinubu, who was the former Lagos State governor, said that the election of president Buhari in 2015, had an air of inevitability to it.
“Despite the odds arrayed against him, the sovereign will of the people lifted him to victory.
“He is truly the right man for this time and place.”
He said that he is happy with the publication of the book, with the just and appropriate title: Making Steady, Sustainable Progress for Nigeria’s Peace and Security.
“The president’s media team, Femi Adesina, Garba Shehu and Laolu Akande, worked with the various ministries to assemble this comprehensive, objective catalogue of the work this government has done.
“This book is a good account of the work this government has accomplished to date.”
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