Did Southerners Teach Nigerians How To Fill Their Pockets From Common Purse, by Ejike Okpa
For the apologizing, emotionally charged based on tribal sentiments but devoid of facts, southern NIGERIANS undermined NIGERIA more.
No Nigerians in the annals of public dipping into the national PURSE has caused more collateral damage than first Finance Minister of Nigeria – FESTUS OKOTIE-EBOH. At the time, the bookkeeper turned Finance Minister was cooking the books and lining his pockets as ignorant and naive Prime Minister Tafawa Balewa slept on the wheel. At a time when Nigeria national budget was in tens of millions, Okotie-Eboh was allegedly pocketed about 10%. The man has been the biggest thief.
Then President Nnamdi Azikiwe recognizing what Okotie-Eboh was doing didn’t raise alarm but instead got mixed up in dipping into ACB and diverting public funds for personal interests.
If not for fast moves by certain Igbos Azikiwe would have been indicted.
From Gowon to Obasanjo to Jonathan, the dipping has been legendary during their administration. Don’t forget Awolowo who as Finance Minister under Gowon engineered the biggest corporate takeover that favored Yorubas than others using nationalizing foreign corporations of 1972 to favor his clan’s folks.
Also don’t forget Yoruba Richard Akinloye – Chairman of NPN during Shagari, who in 1982, imported champagne from France with labels bearing his name to celebrate having made ONE BILLION NAIRA. Then that was nearly $2B.
Up until mid 80s, the northerners were mostly interested in the prestige of power not the trappings of power.
The southerners who projected the appearance and image of being more educated and smarter, aligned the levers of power to steal.
It was not until the likes of Umau Dikko entered the clan of Thieves and stole so much and ran to London, did a northerner showed “Monkey Can Do after Monkey See”.
And credit must be given to Buhari because he was the only sitting Head of State that authorized clandestine operations to have Dikko brought back for trial. Since then, no sitting Head of State or President has sought pursuing former officials who stole and ran overseas.
It wasn’t until 1985, entered IBB who brought to the fore “You Chop and I/We Chop culture”, officially endorsing dipping into the public purse. And IBB was surrounded by southerners who served as CBN Governors, Economic Advisers and Finance Ministers, which was evident during Abacha.
Any objective Nigerian who decides to look at the records, will reach a resounding conclusion that in Nigeria’s 62 years of independence, SOUTHERN Nigerians have caused more collateral damage to collective capital of Nigeria than northerners.
The Yorubas all things considered, were experts at having buildings burnt to destroy records.
All in all, the Monkey See Monkey Can Do, has deepened into the core of an average Nigerian. But the lion share of damage goes to southern Nigerians who think because they falsely think they are smarter than northerners have Institutionalized stealing while conveniently blaming northerners.
A people happily disposed to stealing from themselves will always act like dogs chasing its behind or one wanting to see their ears without use of a mirror.
Now challenge me on facts not emotional comments based on tribal sentiments.
FYI – I have actual records of stealing from Nigeria by whom dated to late 50s.
Ejike E Okpa
Global Affairs Analyst