Having helplessly watched corruption over the years eat deep into the fabric of our society, with its devastating effects on our economic, political and social lives as a country, to the extent that public officers who are supposed to fight corruption are themselves corrupt, it now appears that the only man who can help win this war against corruption in Nigeria is the hangman at Kirikiri Prison.
I lived in the prison barracks for many years and after speaking to friends who are still residing there, I got to understand that the hangman at the prison is not happy. He is not happy with the fact that he has been idle for so many years since the military era. A man so good with his hands and can do a lot with ropes and human necks shouldn’t be idling away, especially at a time when the country is in need of someone with such expertise. Mr. President, you just have to find a way of throwing the corrupt public officers at him and let him perform wonders with their necks. It is the only way we can deter these public officers from dipping their hands into the treasury again.
It doesn’t make any sense that we have a hangman who goes to work every day just to idle away. This is a man who loves his job and is willing to work for the country. He doesn’t like the fact that he is being paid salary monthly for doing nothing. He is a patriotic citizen of this country who doesn’t want to be seen as part of the corruption in the system. He wants to put in the work for the salary he is getting paid.
Mr. President, the issue whether Nigeria should adopt capital punishment for treasury looters is non-negotiable. Countries such as China suffered immensely from corruption, but today are thriving because they got their hangmen involved in the fight against it. China has proven to the rest of the whole how capital punishment is the best mechanism for curbing the cankerworm of corruption.
Those who argue that capital punishment should be for only killers are forgetting that treasury looters are themselves killers. So, it is simply common sense to give capital punishment to those who sentence innocent people to their early graves. Only God can quantify in numbers how many Nigerians have met their untimely death through the corrupt practices of many public office holders. We have to understand that it is not only direct shedding of someone’s blood that amounts to murder.
We should consider how many people have died as a result of widespread poverty in the country.
Nigerians die daily in the course of struggling to get daily bread for themselves and their families, which ordinarily should not be so in a country that is flowing with milk and honey. We should also consider how many soldiers and civilians have died as a result of the $2.1bn that was supposed to be used for the purchase of arms for the military which was diverted to the private bank accounts of a few individuals. Let us also put in mind the millions of people who have died as a result of bad roads in the country.
Treasury looters are murderers and their negative attitudes have done so much damage to Nigeria. How many Nigerian youths have committed suicide because they couldn’t find job after years of graduating? Or have we forgotten so soon how many youths met their untimely death during the immigration recruitment exercise which took place under the administration of former President Goodluck Jonathan? Are we supposed to pretend that it isn’t corruption that is responsible for these and other problems our country has been facing all these years? It was recently disclosed to us by the Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, that all the money that could have been used to develop the country ended in the pockets of just 55 individuals.
Those who have denied freedom to others do not deserve it also. And under a just system, they should not be walking free. So, for the looters of our common wealth, nothing but a visit to the hangman at the Maximum Security Prisons in Kirikiri will suffice as the appropriate punishment.