RIBADU’S EXIT: MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHINGJerome Okoye – Jerome.firstname.lastname@example.org
The headlines screamed, newspapers sold out faster than they came, for once, everythingseem to stand still – RIBADU REMOVED!In all his years as the EFCC chairman, I have deliberately watched with reservation,trying as much as possible to discern the mindset of this man. This police officer who people told me is a threat to corruption. At first, I followed his actions and utterances withmuch enthusiasm. One for been a young man, and the other for been a police officer whomost considered not corrupt. An appellation not so common in Nigeria. As the daysturned to weeks and weeks to months, some of the body language changed as any open-minded observer would tell.It is a sometimes a problem with people who detest corruption to see beyond their noseswhen justice is sacrificed on the altar of anticorruption crusade. I must need enter acaveat here, I do not only hate corruption, I ABHOR IT! However, I am a student of Martin Luther king Jr. and do believe that injustice anywhere is a threat to justiceeverywhere.Time teaches that when a man becomes law unto himself, when a perceived liberator stays “too long” he becomes a bane. Have we forgotten so soon how members of stateassemblies were arrested by men of the EFCC and compelled to impeach Governors. Thecase of plateau state is still fresh where 6 members of a 24-member house signed animpeachment notice to remove a sitting Governor. What of the case in Oyo and Anambrastate. The list grows.From the moment Ribadu reduced himself to OBJ’s hunting tool, all modesty and thecourse for which he set out to achieve was lost. From the day he decided to be partisan,even declaring to us that he knows whom the next president will be, the scale of justicetipped.We can understand the Buhari’s regime trying to fight indiscipline with the might of amilitary government, but who would explain away the flagrant abuse of law anddisregard of its rule by the Ribadu led EFCC. I thought they said he is a trained lawyer.This Chairman of the EFCC has enjoyed an unprecedented record level in promotionespecially in the administration of his paymaster, former President Obasanjo. In fact, hewas promoted twice in a year, from Assistant Commissioner of Police to DeputyCommissioner of Police and then to Commissioner of Police and as a ploy to make himthe successor of the crime riddled administration of Ehindero, was promoted to the rank of Assistant Inspector General of Police.A friend told me the other day that Ribadu said is he is prepared to swear he has never collected bribe in his career. Very funny! Its so easy to swear when so much money and power is involved. Particularly in this age when God rarely administers instant judgment.If he is so clean maybe its time he stepped aside, and let us take a look at some of thethings he has done, then and only then can we know. It is so nice of him to want to stillremain as the EFCC chairman, even at the expense of resigning as a police officer.However, he should be reminded that he was not born an EFCC chairman. I do not think the hands trembled that penned him as the EFCC chairman, neither do I anticipate suchwould happen when a new EFCC chairman will be penned.