Tade Abayomi

Human Rights Activist Femi Falana (SAN) has asked President Goodluck to institute a probe into the disbursement of the over N3 trillion budgeted for security between 2010 and 2014.

Falana also alleged that most of the 125 private jets owned by Nigerians are associated with the N2.3 trillion fuel subsidy scam of 2011.

Falana tasked Nigerians to demand an end to a policy that allows politicians, who constitute 12% of the population to allocate to themselves 74% of the revenue generated by the government asking Nigeria Labour Congress to mobilize Nigerians to compel government to channel the bulk of the foreign reserves to fixing collapsed social infrastructures, fund education, health, transportation and agriculture and create jobs for ‘our army of unemployed youths that have taken to armed robbery’.

He noted that rule of law, transparency and accountability in government serve not only as means to counter corruption but also as fundamental conditions of good governance.

To the lawyer, there is no doubt that the nation’s armed forces can effectively fight the war on terror if they are sufficiently equipped and adequately trained.

He expressed dismay that the Nigerian armed forces that restored peace in war torn Liberia and Sierra Leone have become so ill-equipped that they cannot defeat the rag tag army of boko haram sect and now rely on foreign assistance to assist in rescuing the Chibok girls.

Falana, in a lecture delivered at the 18th National Delegates Conference of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) held at the university of Ibadan entitled “Nigeria’s Crises: corruption, impunity and the paradox for Democracy”, warned Nigeria to learn from the fight against terrorism in Iraq and Afghanistan by allied forces of imperialism instead of celebrating the direct involvement of foreign troops in the war on terror.

Falana also asked federal government to sanction the military authorities for exposing the country to undeserved embarrassment over the dubious claims that they had rescued the abducted girls and that the ‘abducted girls had been located in the den of the terrorists’.

Piqued by the culture of impunity and corruption Falana berated Abuja for lacking “the political leadership to advance democratic reforms and implement anti-corruption laws consistently and impartially”

According to Falana, the lack of political will coupled with double standard, is mostly evident in the government deliberate policy of relying on a diluted and politically motivated notion of rule of law to justify many of its actions.

The Human right lawyer noted that ASUU has demonstrated that unless the people of Nigeria rise up to challenge impunity and corruption on the part of government, the country cannot witness any meaningful development.

“Corruption has molested the entire political system as a consequence of which the very legitimacy of the government has come to be at stake. No doubt, about 125 Nigerians are said to own private jets. But most jets have been associated with the N2.3 trillion fuel subsidy scam of 2011. Well the Nigerian Bureau of Statistics which has stated that over 100 million Nigerians are poor does not measure poverty in terms of private jets or on the basis that a trader has become one of the richest people in the world. What is needed is for the government to do what it preaches by ensuring that no one is above the law, and by demonstrating a faithful commitment to the eradication of mass unemployment and poverty in the midst of plenty. “


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