The Chairman of the Presidential Advisory Committee Against Corruption (PACAC), Prof. Itse Sagay (SAN), said on Wednesday that former President Olusegun Obasanjo’s administration was one of the most corrupt regimes in Nigeria’s history.
He said Obasanjo acts like a saint when he is the “most stained” person around.
Asked if the ex-President should be probed over the $16billion he allegedly spent on the power sector without result, Sagay said: “Honestly I think he should be probed. You see, President Buhari has been very generous and mild towards his predecessors, not wanting to cause discomfort and embarrassment for them out of respect for the positions they held.
“But, Obasanjo is a man who does not respect himself, who thinks he’s the President-General of Nigeria for life and has a right at any time to wade in and be very caustic and publicly insult his successors just because he’s envious of the same position he held. He cannot detach himself from the presidency.
“I think he needs to be brought to order. He has been tolerated enough in this country. The President’s remark was very appropriate and more and more should come because Obasanjo ran one of the most corruption governments this country has ever seen.”
On if the Federal Government can prosecute Obasanjo, the PACAC chairman added: “It’s possible but not likely. It’s possible in the sense that there are issues like Siemens, Halliburton, funding for his library, and not to talk of this electricity thing.
“But, because people decide to be quite and let bygones be bygones. He won’t let peace to prevail, he must raise dust and behave like a saint when you’re the most stained person around. He may bring it on his own head if he’s not careful.”
Another Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Chief Emeka Ngige, urged the anti-graft agencies to do their work no matter who is involved.
“I believe there was a report of the House of Representatives Committee on Power that indicted President Obasanjo in 2008 for various infractions on power sector contracts during his regime. The committee recommended that EFCC or ICPC should do further investigation and possibly prosecute him if found culpable. That report was kept in a deep freezer till date.
“So, the remark of President Buhari is not new. I still believe that the EFCC or ICPC should do its job as recommended by the House. The earlier we start jailing our present and past leaders who made Nigeria a fantastically corrupt nation the better for our democracy,” Ngige said.
A former president of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), Dr. Olisa Agbakoba (SAN), called for strong measure against all those found culpable over the $16billon spending.
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