When i read the much publicized Ribadu’s civil approach at tackling corruption, i knew fear had gripped the commando. Indeed he was a commando of the Rambo style, James Bond and Arnold Schwarzenegger rolled into one; defying court orders, re-arresting suspects granted bail even in the court premises, before the aged and helpless hooded men of the judiciary, whisk them back to the waiting black-Maria.
He became deaf and went on rampage.
He swooped on the governors, threateningly, bayed only by the immunity clause, but promised to wait until they are stripped of immunity after the May 29th election. Many of us thought that he need not wait. A man who defies court orders, a man who allocates unto himself fictitious powers in the constitution, need not revere any aspect of the same constitution.
He hustled for power and got the president’s backing for any piece of impunity extracted from the back-page blurb of the constitution. When he started screening candidates, the court told him he was stepping over the board, but he held on. Mallam Ribadu was part of the whole stock that made Nigeria a laughingly lawless nation.
His arrest of Mike Adenuga, the mega millionaire, Globacom Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, was like the last-fight conquest of Bruce Lee, that Chinese metaphor of fisticuff.
So when he growled at IBB, many took him seriously, to demystify the icon, held in awe by the teeming population of politicians, that model of an untouchable looter!
We have heard him thunder: ”I will jail Atiku….”
Created by the law, he became lord of the law. He was fervent at justifying the extra-Act of creating EFCC alongside ICPC, perhaps.
No doubt, looking back, EFCC was created to smokescreen Nigeria with anti-corruption crusade, while the nation was besieged by the swooping masquerade of massive looting, the type never before witnessed in the nation’s over 40 years of independence from Britain. No president had so grandly designed a structure of deceit, entrench it in the statute book, and fund it with tax-payers’ money as ex-President Olusegun Obasanjo.
IBB was nicknamed evil genius. Obasanjo will pass as a thieving genius!
May 29 had come and gone. So people now ask, i have read variously too, what happens to Ribadu’s promise of “No corrupt Governor will go scot-free with a loot…’
But Ribadu had better sulk at the loss of being the nation’s number 1 police chief than bark. He knows, perhaps more than any naija man, that the corrupt ex-Governors are friendlier to President Umaru Yar’Adua than they were to Obasanjo.
Under Obasanjo’s regime, EFCC was instituted to queue the governors behind unpopular decisions, policies and deals. But these are real chums at the Governors Forum. I am sure President Umaru Yar’Adua may have had cause to shiver a bit over Ribadu. He was such an indiscriminate instrument of coercion.
But the days of Rambo are over, Ribadu must have realised. Otherwise how can Ribadu lose the IG appointment at the seemingly inconsequent fact of not having attended the War College, even after the obvious preparatory promotion to AIG.
This may have humbled him. If Ribadu dreams of the crouching figure of Balogun, the entrapped and immensely disgraced former police IG, disheveled in the black-Maria that brings him to court for stealing , then fear too will grip him at the thought of another deaf-mute commando taking over from him to take a witch-hunting political order in the name of fighting corruption.
So Ribadu is presently mending fences. His barks have been immensely reduced to the face-saving, tea-taking and note-taking question-and-answer session with the invitational visits of the corrupt ex-governors. Perhaps now his boys will don the toga of the scary red vest and hit the streets to hunt the yahoo boys in neither-here-nor-there cyber-cafe raids. Romping on roaches is safer than a toothless bark at the ex-governors. After all, some big dudes in the fraud deals can settle like politicians. And raiding cyber café provides just as much media hype, as any commando will wish, while bidding his time for another political opportunity.