FEATURE ARTICLE

Monday, June 3, 2024
[email protected]
Toronto, Canada
UNITED IN FRAUD (?): PERVERSION OF A CHERISHED IDEAL

he Federal Government Colleges were established in 1973 and the stated central objective was to foster national unity among the children of Nigerians whose parents survived the agonizing experiences of the fratricidal war which ended in 1970. The belief informing the establishment was anchored, firmly, on the expectation that these schools would produce not only children who would grow into patriotic adults. The Government invested in material and human resources to realize this noble objective. The focus was also on nurturing citizens on the best values. Pro Unitate: For Unity, was adopted as the motto of all the newly created schools.

As a product of that school, indeed a pioneer student of Federal Government College, Ogbomosho, Nigeria, which was founded in 1977, and also one of the founding members of the old students' association, I owe posterity a sacrosanct duty to always stand by the precepts of our nurture. As a political historian, public commentator, human rights, civil society and democratization specialist, I will be failing in my responsibility if certain happenings are allowed to pass unchallenged.

We must be bold enough to confront any act which suggests, even remotely, a certain predilection for dishonesty, regardless of where such a reprehensible disposition emanates from. We must not be seen to be condoning any corrupt tendency even if this comes from very close quarters. All decent people should rise in unison to condemn shameful deeds wherever and whenever any aberrant behaviour surfaces. Let it not be said that we are guilty of gross moral cowardice due to our timidity or complicity.

There must be an irreducible level of acceptable conduct expected of those who lay claims to some training. Greater is the expectation from anyone who shares affinity with us on the basis of alma mater. We must protect the dignity of that heritage as forcefully as any situation demands. We must shun all attempts at prevaricating on issues that are so clear. We must not be tired of asking questions at all times. We must confront any clique of principalities working against our collective interest. Neither ambivalence nor equivocation should be tolerated. We must challenge perfidy and brazen acts of shamelessness and damn the consequences.

My narratives boil down to the corruption and fraud that was perpetuated by the erstwhile leadership of my Alma Mata, who were the Global Executives in collaborations with a past President, who is the executive director of Zenith bank, and some social nuisance ladies, who are always hobnobbing with people in government for cash and carry. These shenanigans are unable to account for the sum 15million Naira which they invested in two banks, GTB and Heritage bank without any authorization by members of the board of trustees. They have been making provocative and incendiary comments despite under investigation by the police. So dubious are their messages and styles that no serious analyst from FEGOCO0SA will waste precious time in discussing with them to allow these comedians to engage them in their immoral bankruptcy.

We must pursue the case of fraud perpetrated brazenly, allegedly, by some members of the Executive of our Alumni Association, FEGOCOOSA. Granted that the matter is under investigation by the Police, it must be made clear that nobody can intimidate members from pursuing justice until all those found guilty are punished and every Kobo of the misappropriated, embezzled, converted and misapplied funds is recovered. This intervention becomes necessary because of the reports of harassment and threats against those perceived as constituting an obstacle in the path of infamy. In a matter of probity, such as this one, anybody who chooses to sit on the fence is either a traitor or an accomplice.

As we await the outcome of the investigations by the Police, we must be clear on the need for the recovery of monies misappropriated by those entrusted with the affairs of the Association. We owe generations yet unborn this onerous duty. We must not fail. Anyone who supports this disgrace, either by conduct or conniving passivity is worse than a criminal. We must be ready to confront attitudes which cast doubt on our claims to have partaken of the quintessential nurture by our great alma mater.

"Failure for a nation-state looms when the greed of rulers overwhelms their responsibilities to better their people and their surroundings." - LA, Political Historian, Human Rights, Civil Society and Democratization Specialist.