RIBADU - NO GOOD DEED GOES UNPUNISHED

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Far too often, those who stand up and do the right thing end up being severely punished. So many have been destroyed for stepping outside the status quo, even though doing so is the honorable and proper thing to do. While such is not germane to Nigeria, it does appear that punishment for a job well done is increasingly becoming a Nigerian trademark. One need look no further than the rise and incredible fall of Nuhu Ribadu to confirm that in Nigeria, when it comes to doing the right thing for the country - no good deed goes unpunished.

'ATTACKING' THE FORMER ANTI-CORRUPTION STAR
Once a shining, and arguably, untouchable star, Ribadu is now fighting for the preservation of his legacy and the accomplishments he made from being flushed down the drain. There were signs that his position in the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) was in jeopardy not too long after Yar'Adua came into office, what with the constant comments and even acts of deliberate interference by the Attorney General of the Federation, Michael Aondoakaa.

The whittling away of Ribadu's 'shine' happened over a period of time but kicked into high gear when he was removed from his position as chair of the EFCC and sent for 'required training' to the National Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies (NIPSS). During that 'training', Ribadu was demoted from Assistant Inspector General to Deputy Commissioner of Police, an act for which he later sued the Police Service Commission (PSC). The case was eventually thrown out of court.

Just last week, he was prevented from graduating from the 'training' course by armed SSS officers who forcibly removed and arrested Ribadu at the NIPSS ceremony. As of today, his graduation certificate is yet to be given to him, prompting President Yar'Adua, who typically avoids interfering in various domestic issues, to publicly deny that Ribadu's arrest and other woes were prompted by his office. The President went on to 'order' NIPSS to confer upon him his certificate and institute a 'probe' into the graduation incident. Despite that, the list of problems Ribadu faces only continue to grow. Now, the PSC is set to 'query' Ribadu for improper dressing and misconduct for recently showing up with other NIPSS 'students' to meet with Yar'Adua in civilian clothing.

PUNISHMENT FOR A JOB WELL DONE
In the quest to investigate the theft of Nigeria's money by some unscrupulous citizens, Ribadu, undoubtedly, made enemies. His meteoric rise to the second highest position in the Police Force, AIG, must have been hard for many of his peers to swallow. However, considering his accomplishments as head of the EFCC, such as the incredible retrieval of $600 billion in stolen public funds, and the investigation and trial of many previously deemed untouchable individuals, his promotions, though atypical, should not be shocking.

What should be shocking is the unfortunate suffering at the hands of the PSC and indeed the Federal Government (via Yar'Adua's silence) that Ribadu and his family are forced to endure simply because he did his job. I hope Ribadu does not regret rejecting the $15 million bribe, surely one of many, that he was offered to not investigate a certain individual. I hope he does not regret doing exactly what he had been greatly criticized for - finally investigating former President Obasanjo and his friends/family/allies because once he took the EFCC down that road - announcing that it will look into OBJ's activities (which Yar'Adua and the new EFCC have now squashed), investigating Ibori, and OBJ's daughter Obasanjo-Bello - his troubles really began.

THE UNFORTUNATE PRECEDENT
But what is more disconcerting, is the precedent that Ribadu - as a man, as a concept - sets for Nigeria's present and Nigeria's future. By allowing Ribadu to be subjected to such treatment, Nigeria - its government and its people - have failed to protect those that have worked for the betterment of the country. Clearly, in the performance of his job at the EFCC, Ribadu was not perfect, but for serving the people's interests, he should be allowed to exist in relative peace without the fear of constant attack and even physical harm as he himself has asserted to. Given Ribadu's situation, why would any Nigerian volunteer to assist the government in its proclaimed battle to limit corruption? In fact, why would any Nigerian assist the nation in doing anything good, if it will ruffle feathers and potentially put one and their family at risk? How can we not protect those charged with going to battle for the people? The failure to understand the importance of protecting those, like Ribadu, when things get rough is a failure that we all are guilty of.

Instead, we all watch, seemingly powerless, but hoping that something good will come out of all this. But we cannot escape the unfortunate precedent set by these series of events, nor can we ignore the reality that for his service to the Republic, Ribadu will be punished. The only question that remains is how will it all end. For Ribadu's sake, the sake of his family and indeed the future of Nigeria, I hope that in due time, focus will turn away from Ribadu and he will be allowed to live in Nigeria (if he so chooses) in peace. If not, if Ribadu is forced to leave the country or something sinister happens to him or his family, it will be one more shortcoming Nigeria will eventually have to account for.

UPDATE: Ribadu finally got his graduation certificate.



Related Articles of Interest:
- Ribadu's Removal
- Ribadu Demoted; Likely To Be Arrested
- Sabotage: Aondoakaa vs. Ribadu Et. Al.
- Political Soap Operas: Nigerian Style





AddThis Feed Button

15 Curiosities. Add Yours.:

For the love of me said...

I honestly do not know what to say about this ibadu case. Slowly, Im starting to give up on Nigria, perhaps there is no hope.

SOLOMONSYDELLE said...

@ FTLOM: Sorry, i own;t let you give up on Nigeria. No ma'm.

There are problems, of course. But no problem is unsolvable. Continue to focus on the issues that are passionate to you and do the very best you can. That way, you leave a legacy behind that others can improve on, no matter how small. We can never allow ourselves to become defeated by the complexities ahead of us.

Take it easy, my sista. There is great beauty in Nigeria, as you already know. How is the family?

Beauty said...

Why would any Nigerian volunteer to assist the government in its proclaimed battle to limit corruption? Perhaps, that is a whole blog with its own issues. Why would any Nigerian assist the nation in doing anything good, if it will ruffle feathers and potentially put one and their family at risk? Now that is the other question that can begin to address the signs of the times. A climate of fear in spades! My problem has always been with those that do not get the point. For example, those people were saying Ribadu deserved his treatment for doing the same thing while in office. It hurts to read those. They have forgotten that regardless of the issues if might is right then life has no place. Defending the weak or the powerless is the only state of mind.

Please note that I have not gone into the philosopy of plato's republic and other rethorical discuss including the infamous PPP. The oxy/moron is in asking for justice in the land of wrongs. we all watch, seemingly powerless cannot be correct since posting this is your best for now. This is history and everyone contributing to this has played a part. Powerlessness is a state of mind and even those we think are powerful simply do not have a clue but that is not to say they are inept. Nigeria is sadly sliding towards a failed state status as informed. How else would common teething powder kill children sidesepping for a moment the injustice in the land?

Retirement sucks, don't give up, never give in, die trying your best even if it is only using the web to screem within. We are but a tiny few moments in the scheme of the whole and that is the full picture.

SOLOMONSYDELLE said...

"die trying your best even if it is only using the web to screem within. We are but a tiny few moments in the scheme of the whole and that is the full picture."

I agree, wholeheartedly. The frustration is what creates a sense of powerlessness - the inability to destroy the frustration with more concrete action. But like I noted to For The Love of Me, we just can't give up or else that 'failed state' prediction will come true, and we can't afford for that to happen.

Thanks for the reassuring words. Greatly appreciated.

NIGERIA POLITRICKS said...

The AUDACITY of trying to fight corruption in Nigeria is D.I.E!....
RIBADU dared to step on some powerful toes while trying to do what is right and just for millions of Nigerians. The likes of Ribadu are despised in Nigeria by the multitudes of corrupt leaders who parade themselves in the corridors of power!
And Yardua turned his back on Ribadu and has given him up to the dawgs of his godfathers...Yardua is just a puppet, spouting a gibberish mantra of rule of law. THERE IS NO RULE OF LAW IN NIGERIA!

NIGERIA IS A LAWLESS COUNTRY! - PERIOD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

princekay123 said...

I was opportuned to meet Ribadu some years back when he was invited as a guest speaker at Police College, Ikeja (Lagos). From my observation of his behaviour that day, Ribadu is too ambitious. I strongly think Ribadu's case is nemesis. He played god when he was the anti-graft warlord, and this is because Nigerian overglorified him. He fought Atiku (a sitting VP) to a standstill. He indicted people who were against OBJ's policies without going to court. He was used as an instrument to cow the opposition. He was fully in support of OBJ's third term. He was used to frighten technocrats with potency of political administration.

Have you forgotten Adenuga and Momodu's ordeal? Have you forgotten that Ribadu never followed the rule of law during the prosecution of suspected corrupt politicians? What of Ribadu's illegal arrest of people and his unguarded comments? What about his arrogance? If Ribadu laid a good legacy as anti-graft czar how come OAU students damaged his car when he went to the school for a seminar? Why was Keyamo and other anti-OBJ activist against him during his reign? Enough of this sympathy!

Let me tell you this, EFCC is one of the most corrupt organisations I know in Nigeria today. If you doubt me, pick the top hierachy of the commission and probe their assets before and after the formation of EFCC. Mind you, you must check the assets of their relatives, friends and neighbours because they use people to cover their loots.

However, one cannot overlook the leadership qualities in Ribadu. He is brave, undaunted, committed, loyal (100% loyal to OBJ) and well-educated.

Beauty said...

@princekay123 re Have you forgotten that Ribadu never followed the rule of law during the prosecution of suspected corrupt politicians? What of Ribadu's illegal arrest of people and his unguarded comments? What about his arrogance? If Ribadu laid a good legacy as anti-graft czar how come OAU students damaged his car when he went to the school for a seminar? Why was Keyamo and other anti-OBJ activist against him during his reign? Enough of this sympathy! wow. Such vernon seemed to be killing us slowly. Do you think the babies that died recently due to bad business in Nigeria cared about Ribadu or anyone else? All of these words are about our future. We must look forward to justice and the rule of law. A little bit of it goes a very long way. Poverty has created our dependence on mobile phones yet people labelled that success. How about simple fixed fine access? The 1:40 ratio is a national disgace which equals jobs for the people.

That background has created an uneducated class that runs our civil service headed by a backward government. Now, poverty has been renamed extreme poverty where a total collapse of virtue is the result. So you see, this is not just about bad boy Ribadu. It is about justice and compassion in the true sense of its meanings. We can only begin to turn around our situation by developing a simpler way of looking at the issues. Everyone has an issue but it does not mean the ongoing Mumbai seige mentality. Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a great battle

webround said...

you're right, my fear is "the precedent being set". it looks like nigerians are being told "if you do your job correctly, the state will not protect you."

Sherri said...

Thanks Solo!

while i have issues with the motive behind the creation of the EFCC and Ribadu's style of selective prosecution, his commitment and boldness is laudable and reassuring of the possibility of a semblance of accountability in Nigeria.

i daresay, that Ribadu is a victim of the law of unintended consequence(s) and it's quite ironic and sad to see him being punished and discredited.

you are right, we can't give up! we won't give up!

RE Ausetkmt said...

isn't he just following Policy. Yardy wants him in a cage so there he will stay, sitting on his graduation paper, in civilian clothes. LOL

btw remind me again, why are we investigating bribes in Naija ? ahhhhhhh so they can find the money they haven't stolen yet.

now they are investigating why he wore regular clothes to see the prezzi ? co'mon, investigate why the prez isn't wearing His Military Uniform since he's obviously still the top general in the bunker. Fela Said It Now I'm Saying It,

'OOOOOOOO Sweet Nigeria Land I Love'

guerreiranigeriana said...

...well surprise, surprise...this reminds me of a former president of liberia...i'm forgetting his name now...lives in new york though...completely ridiculed by his children and other liberians for NOT stealing money and becoming uber-rich...they say he is stupid...his son won't send money because of his honesty...a whole ex-president of liberia living on welfare in new york...when asked if he could do it again, if he would steal, he says yes, although in his demeanor and way of doing things, you know he wouldn't...and then people want to get mad when kids say things like crime pays or want to emulate thieves...this world isn't set up to reward those that do good and honest things...but that doesn't mean you don't try anyway...

...can you even imagine what we are reading?...arrested for wearing civilian clothes to meet the president?!...for Christ sake!!...i don't even support what i'm about to say but this is when i start to wonder if maybe it wouldn't be better to have some help in ruling our country...in fact, baboons could probably run the country better than yard-head and friends and the other bobos before...i have my money on the generation working their way up...i really do...or we could go with my alternative, just kill off all these old-heads and start anew:)...j/k, a little...;)

azuka said...

Logic doesn't work in Nigeria. I'm beginning to think it's normal to be given punishment for doing right, and accolades for doing wrong.

bumight said...

I was actually wondering when you were going to blog about this.
Granted Ribadu allowed himself(and the EFCC) to be used to witch hunt OBJ's enemies, but that should not cancel out all the good work he has done.
Nigeria has a history of biting the hands that feed her: Okonjo- Iweala, Soludo and the like. Which is why I just laugh when people say we should go and "change Nigeria". yeah right!

incoherent said...

o darn! here i was going to pour all the vitriol i have in me into thos post, and you had to go and ask me to be "civil". KILLJOY!!

lol anywho. I was pretty annoyed about the whole Ribadu thing. and this happening fell right in line with my usual gripe about nigeria.if you are honest, upstanding, and principled you are considered a pariah. its really sad. you are praised and hailed for stealing and looting just as long as you are "settling" your cronies. my father insists everyday that we should follow ghana's example. get all the old guard in a building and blow it up!! i'm beginning to agree with that sentiment.......so erm guerrierianigeriana IF YOU'RE DOWN ;) HOLLER!

my blog said...

wow! why is yar'adua not intervening

Post a Comment

Get curious...share your thoughts, long and short. But, do remain civil.