Friday, January 01, 2010

Maryam Babangida: An Icon Of Corrupt Good Cause Dies


In 1960, the British colonial government that straddled Nigeria from the mid-eighteenth century gave up their place albeit reluctantly, to the indigenous people. Regardless of how much we accuse the colonialists of stealing from us, it is shameful to accept that they left us in a better state than the country is in today, 50 years on.

As the 'indigenous' people embarked on a more clever stealing due to local knowledge, the crippled giant of Africa continues living in the nightmare of one corrupt leader after another. Due to this, a few Nigerians, frustrated to survive, were to embark on greed through fraud, drug smuggling, money laundering, etc and tainted the rest of us in the eye of the international community.

These corrupt leaders succeeded each other through the evil system of military coup d'├ętat. Along this line came General Ibrahim Babangida. In the 8 years of his rule, Nigeria went down the abyss faster and only comparable to the era of his successor, General Sanni Abacha who was also a constant behind-the-screen architect of all the evil leaders before him.

Now, as General Babangida's wife, Mrs. Maryam Babangida passed away on December 27 2009, it is detestable to see the storm of praise their fellow corrupt elite are raising in her memory; nauseating.

While her pet project, the Better Life Program (BLP) for Rural Women would have been a wonderful vision, it is a regret to remind us that it was used to steal from the state. Mrs. Babangida glamorised herself with the wealth of the same poor she claimed to help. It is obvious that BLP left far less good than the Satan would offer anyone in hell.

Thanks but no thanks to Maryam Babangida. She swindled the state, created an unelected office and ran an account that was not available for audit even to the state. The evidence lies in her assets. But it is only in a country like Nigeria that such amount of corruption is condoned and praised because majority of billionaires in Nigeria cannot give a proper and honest explanation of their pathway to wealth; and Maryam and her husband are in this league.

She was a woman with a great vision, but like the vision of the Devil, she happily achieved this vision through corruption. It leaves her a loathsome than respectable woman for aiding her husband's undemocratic rule.

Before we forget and start to praise the Babangidas today, it is crucial to remember that their regime casted Nigeria into the worst dark days only below the period of the civil war when he annulled the 1993 election. Babangida and Maryam built a dynasty completely based on corruption. Otherwise, how can a military man and a housewife, end up in charge of wealth running into millions of dollars. But if ever Nigeria gets an honest government, a roll-call will require them to return their loot.

But no, Nigeria has not lost an icon, we have only become one evil less... and more of such could finally save the country from the doom that faces her.

image: General Ibrahim and wife Maryam taken from this link

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