Monday, 31 August 2015

Okogie - Buhari should invite looters for talks so they can return the loot

Former President of the Christian Association of Nigeria, Anthony Cardinal 
Okogie, advised President Muhammadu Buhari, to invite suspected looters
 of the country’s treasury for talks.

He said that since the President is working to retrieve looted funds,
 he advised the president that it would be easier if looters were allowed
 to return their loot without castigating them publicly.
Okogie, said:
“I agree with the National Peace Committee that the President 
should tread softly and should set criteria that he is going to use. 
Corruption is endemic in Nigeria. That is why they are asking for caution:  
‘Look at it properly,’” he said.
The cleric urged President Buhari to invite those suspected to have looted
 government treasury “to speak to their conscience.”
He said that it would be difficult for the government to retrieve the loot as 
the suspects would use their financial resources to create legal hurdles for
 their prosecutors.
Okogie said:
“People like that, when they go to court, they don’t look right and left 
before they do things. If I have a man like that and I know he has the 
money, I will weigh the options; ‘will it profit the nation if I take this 
man to court. If I take him to court, he is going to get a lawyer. 
The lawyer will be employed with part of the money I am looking for.
“The lawyer will now start to ask for adjournments and all what not. 
I may not get this money until after four years. And the judge too, 
in the mean time, is getting (part of the loot); you will not know. 
He won’t just adjourn anyhow.
“The lawyer will invite his brother (the judge) to come and get part 
of the cake until half of it will be gone. We have to look at the issue 
from that angle. And you may end up getting nothing.”
When asked if such would be possible in a sanitised judiciary, 
he asked, “Is it sanitised?”
He said these are the areas the President ought to have started his anti-graft
 war by “sanitising and purifying” the judiciary first. “At least, you will know
 that three-quarters of the place is tight, and then you can start (the probe),” 
he added.
He further said that parents were no more disciplined as like in the old days.
He said:
“These days, they don’t care anymore. That is not right; that is not 
how they were brought up.” 
“Look at the probe that is going on now, for example; how can one 
person manage to get (steal) one-point-something billion; not even 
million but billion, and very soon you will hear of trillions? Where did 
he get it from? That is how it is going on, and he is from a family.
“And if his conscience worried him, he will run to his pastor to say 
‘I want to pay tithe-; this is my tithe.’ The pastor collects the tithe. 
Seeing that it is huge money, the pastor will ask him, 
‘what can I do for you?’ ”

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