A Letter to President Jonathan

      When Nigerians loot their treasury to enrich themselves or massively rig elections to acquire power, they always give testimony and ascribe their success to the will of God. The shout of God's favor is the usual chorus. Your rise to the presidential throne is the real will of Almighty God and not any other president for that matter in at least the last 25 years in the history of Nigeria.

      Mr. President, please what Nigerians expect from you is beyond rhetoric speeches. You certainly know more than the rest of Nigerians that the country lacks leadership. To you much has been given, therefore much is expected from you. Nigerians hope that you cannot afford to disappoint them because you have all it takes to move the country forward without personally losing anything. This is the dawn of a new era, and an opportunity for you to leave a legacy behind for generations unborn. In the week of your elevation to presidency, you boastfully told Nigerians that, "the war against corruption will be prosecuted more robustly. We will therefore strengthen the capacity of the anti-corruption agencies and give them a free hand to prosecute the anti-corruption war." Indeed, this letter was conceived from this part of your honorable speech.

      Mr. President, you're aware that president Obasanjo (OBJ) introduced the Economic and Financial Crime Commission (EFCC) to fight corruption in Nigeria. Of course, it's a fact that corruption is the worst disease that has ravaged Nigeria in the past 25 years. No progress can ever be made in Nigeria with the present high level of corruption. Hillary Clinton, the United States of America, Secretary of State, made a remarkable and truthful statement recently about Nigeria. She said, "the corruption in Nigeria is unbelievable." Your immediate predecessor, President Yar'Adua made a quick one at the EFCC leadership by changing its leadership from a serving Police Officer to a retired Police officer who would not report to the Inspector General of Police. This letter seeks for you to immediately relinquish the power to remove the EFCC chairperson. Please retain the prerogative of appointing the EFCC chairperson, but leave the power to remove or re-appoint the EFCC chairperson to 60% vote by the National Assembly. This way, the chairperson reports to the whole nation and really gets the free hand to operate as you rightly indicated in your speech. Apparently, this matter was mentioned to President Yar'Adua long ago but for reason(s) best known to him, he delayed the execution of this noble plan.

      When you let go this power and set the precedence, it would make the chairpersons of EFCC be accountable for their actions. For instance, Nuhu Ribadu, as EFCC chairperson did not fail neither did he get a pass mark because he turned his eyes away from the cronies of his boss, OBJ. What we don't know is if indeed Ribadu, enriched himself under the pretence that he was protecting the allies of OBJ. As a small child, your mother would have repeatedly told you that you cannot swear for anyone except the child in the worm who is absolutely innocent. However, what we don't know now is if that adage is still true because with the level of corruption in Nigeria, chances are that Nigerian women may be carrying corrupt babies in their worm. Furthermore, the people of Nigeria cannot presently trust Mrs Waziri's actions and speeches as the EFCC is no more the supposedly corruption czar. Again because she (Waziri) reports to the president and the issue of favor can never be ruled out. Agreed, every body above 21 years is accountable for his/her actions. But the reality is that the performance of the EFCC is entwined with the presidency. It's best to let each person stand on his/her own records without any iota of doubt from any quarters. If you don't execute this solicited plan, Mrs Waziri's personal corruption can always be interpreted or traced to your office. Kindly get rid of this unnecessary baggage. In management, your followers have to believe in you and one of the ways to do that is to create a believable atmosphere such as taking your hands off sensitive areas like the power to remove the EFCC chairperson.

      The importance of education cannot be over-emphasized. Education has made human existence enjoyable. There has been mass transformation in every aspect of mankind due to improved standards of education at all levels. Mr. President, you're a pride to the nation because you are the most educated executive president in the history of Nigeria. It doesn't matter whether your doctorate degree is in politics or any field of study. What matters is that your level of education has circumcised your mind in order to see things clearly and be able to evaluate and appreciate human existence. Please let the people of Nigeria and across the globe see these unique worth in your thoughts, decisions and actions. The immediate hope for Nigerians is to drastically reduce corruption and usher in the air of orderliness. You certainly have nothing at stake if you embark on the EFCC deal mentioned above. It will pave the way to properly fight the endemic corruption that has plagued Nigeria for too long and which brought poverty to the masses.

God bless you. 

Tosan Okotie

Lives in Texas, USA.