Justifying why he and other members of the National Working Committee of the PDP stole a quarter of a billion naira of party funds immediately after President Jonathan lost the election, Olisa Metuh says:
“Before going to press PDP Publicity Secretary, Olisa Metuh told Saharareporters that the payments was made to assist NWC for the Governorship and state house of assembly elections that took place on April 11th 2015. He said that since the Presidency was more concerned about transparency, they Presidency Campaign Council should publish how it gave out N700 million to each state and most importantly how the Presidency spent Nigerian resources in the last 6 years.”
Seven hundred million times 36 plus Abuja = ???
Did I not write in the build up to the election that once they start fighting publicly after losing the election, the extent of the heist perpetrated by these people would shock even the most hardened career Jonathanian? And this is just the beginning o. The fights will get muddier, murkier, and messier o. This is just still the naira heist we are hearing about o. They have not started the dollars fights o. Revelations about who got what in kilograms of hundred-dollar bills will still happen as they fight in public o.
Two years ago, I stopped talking about corruption in Nigeria. I wrote that when you start to denominate theft in billions and hundreds of billions of naira, it is no longer corruption. It is impunity. I started trying to understand Nigeria in terms of impunity; what produces it, why it is endured, justified, tolerated, and rationalised by so many. But now I see that impunity no longer adequately explains Nigeria.
What explains Nigeria is one word: wickedness. Olisa Metuh is not saying that he didn’t steal. He is not even worried about the figures he is bandying about. He is saying that the Presidency is a greater thief. Olisa Metuh is not corruption. Olisa Metuh is not impunity. Olisa Metuh is wickedness.
It is a hopeless society where the instinct to deny theft (actuated by shame and the fear of retribution) is surplus to the requirements of social membership and citizenship.
Those of you asking Buhari to probe these things are assuming that we have any framework, any procedural and institutional mechanism that could handle the scale of the theft supervised by just the Presidency, the PDP, and Hajia Desinatu in the petroleum sector.
I don’t think there is any existing framework for Buhari to handle theft on this scale. We need to establish a TRC like they did in South Africa after Apartheid. Our own will not be called a Truth and Reconciliation Commission. It should be called a Theft and Retribution Commission. Such a TRC must understand that retribution for the concerned here is neither prison nor the death penalty. We are beyond all that. What the guilty need in Nigeria now is institutionalisation for this is sickness. Once they have confessed to the billions and hundreds of billions stolen, you institutionalise them and begin emergency psychiatric treatment.
If you know Olisa Metuh, if you know Hajia Desinatu, tell them to stop running from pillar to post. Nobody is interested in jailing them. We want to get help for them eventually at a TRC.