There is hardly a day that passes without one hearing of someone somewhere looting the treasury.
The cliché is that virtually any public office holder is a potential thief. Such a public office holder can be termed a crook or one that has embezzled or one that has used his/her office to enrich himself/herself.
Welcome to the new Nigeria, where media trial is the thing.
One is judged guilty even before a real trial begins and such a person is condemned before a law court gives its verdict. It gets so bad that it takes a miracle for one to extricate himself from the allegations, even if he was proven innocent by a competent court thereafter.
At the rate allegations of corruptions are being brandied around, many right thinking and haters of corruption may find it difficult to serve their fatherland.
This is because anybody, and I mean anyone, can wake up and allege that Mr. A is a thief. And only the grace of God can exonerate such a person. His name would have been rubbed in the mud and his integrity would not worth the paper it is written.
Allegations have been flying here and there. Many would not be accurate in the dates, but it started gradually and now it is like torrents, and if nothing is done to curtail it, it might be difficult in the near future to see genuine persons that would want to serve their fatherland.
And those outside the shores would not be happy with what is happening to those who are selflessly serving their fatherland and are being described as rogues and high grade thieves.
The truth is that there is no highly placed person today in Nigeria that has not stepped on toes of some people and these are the people who shout to high heavens that their boss is a thief.
And not forgetting of course, those eying the position, they can and would do everything possible to disparage the occupier of the seat. And I think that is what is playing out in NEDC.
We have Magu, Maina, Niger Delta Development Commission and now the attention is shifting to North East Development Commission, and the common denominator is that they are all corrupt.
No one is saying they are saints, but the hatred being shared in the media would be difficult for any of them that might be declared innocent hereafter to wash himself clean of these allegations.
While Nigeria was still trying to wrap its fingers around the allegations of financial recklessness going on in the Niger Delta Development Commission, alarm was raised of another round of alleged corruption uncovered in the North East Development Commission.
The NEDC, established by President Buhari in 2017, is charged with the responsibility of coordinating funds accruing from the Federation Account and donor agencies for purpose of rehabilitating and resettling victims of insurgency, reconstruction of homes and infrastructural development, tackling poverty and illiteracy in the North East states of Adamawa, Bauchi, Borno, Taraba and Yobe.
The Boko Haram insurgency in the North East has resulted in the massive internal displacement of persons, loss of lives and destruction of properties.
The House of Representatives has waded in and a special committee has been mandated to find out about the allegation. It has 8 weeks to submit its finding to the Green chamber.
But the commission has already been judged guilty in the conventional and social media, even before the committee had begun sitting. N100billion is alleged to be missing.
Haba! With the massive development being embarked upon by the commission, buying machinery and vehicle to ease the work of the security agencies, and yet the people alleging said nothing has been done.
While not speaking for the management of the commission, the job of the commission has been spelt out in the law establishing the commission.
The commission was established with a mission of coordinating funds accruing from the federation account and donor agencies for the purposes of rehabilitating and resettling of victims of insurgency, reconstruction of homes, infrastructural development and tackling of illiteracy in the Northeastern part of the country.
The allegations include the high handedness by the managing director Mohammed Goni Alkali, haba, let us fear God in our utterances oh.
If a public officer at the helm of affairs does not allow mediocre to hold sway, he is accused of highhandedness, over inflation of contracts, this remains mere allegation, awards of non-existent contracts, massive contract splitting and flagrant disregard for the procurement laws in the award of contracts.
As of today, nothing to show these are true but are what they are; figment of imagination.
The accusation included that the N100 billion so far disbursed to the commission by the federal government has vanished under a year without any visible impact on the refugees nor any infrastructural development credited to the name of the commission in the whole of the Northeast.
Yet from the money is what the commission used to pay salaries, allowances and buying same vehicles they are accusing the commission of.
The truth is that those throwing the stone may be the people that might have been denied one favour or the other at the NEDC headquarters. Lies may be on the prowl for long, but the truth would soon catch up and destroy the fallacies being bandied around.
Mohammed Abdullahi Gyamas wrote in from Abuja