Like a piercing beam in the pit of sleaze, the oft-touted crack shot and veteran of many infamous battles can only shoot breeze. That is the lot of Olagunsoye Oyinlola, military bully and embattled “governor” of Osun State , in the aftermath of the swoop of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on his graft-soaked government.
As at the last count, it had been a tsunami all over. The Secretary to the State Government (SSG) was holed up in Abuja, in the EFCC grilling room. So were two errant commissioners, which petitions to the commission alleged had some cases to answers. Back at Osogbo, it has been fleeing galore for many others, who like common criminals have taken to their heels, now convinced that they have, as Chinua Achebe said in ‘A Man of the People’, stolen too much for the owner to notice. But for the immunity attached to a noble office occupied by a power cad, the controversial governor too would probably have been on the run!
Like darkness before light, the general has watched his troop of alleged scammers vamoose before the anti-graft agency and he cannot do a thing. It has been a chastening experience indeed! So, many would naturally sympathise with the embattled but impotent chief executive, condemned sooner than later to ending up in ignominy.
Still though many sympathise, hardly does the brazen vote-stealer possess the dignity to realise how his electoral steal has so rubbished the high office of governor. A more introspective character would just have quietly licked his wound, hoping that the disgrace would quickly blow over. Not this proud and unrepentant scion of ruinous military rule in Nigeria, now back to infect the current democracy with the greed and steal that have turned millions of Nigerians into beggars in their own country!
So, instead of keeping a dignified quiet, he has resorted to shooting breeze – with his outlandish statement concerning the Action Congress (AC) lawmakers who blew the whistle on his corrupt practice of purporting to pay funds for constituency projects into personal accounts.
By the classical Oyinlola corruptive strategy, the unwritten code was perhaps for everyone to quaff the money, leave the project undone and none the wiser. That way, the beneficiaries would have been morally and fatally weakened to be deaf, dumb and blind when the professional scammers in the Osun government go on, as they are wont to do, with their jumbo stealing.
So, by a mess of pottage worth a measly N5 million or N10 million as the case might have been, they would have been compromised and shut up forever when billions start developing wings and zooming out of government till. Could there have been a more complete but stupider blackmail?
Well, it didn’t exactly work out – to Oyinlola’s chagrin. When the EFCC swooped on the state and the allegations were found to be not without foundation, the corrupter-in-chief has attempted to shift the goal post just to be seen to be saying something – isn’t silence ever golden?
He has now come up with a supposition that suggests that the legislators who ab initio blew the whistle on his graft empire had actually spent the money – or, in any case, part of it. His reason? That they had allegedly started implementing the projects before the scandal blew and therefore had made some withdrawals from the cursed lodgements.
So, the fecund mind (a monumental disgrace to the high office of governor) posited that some imaginary sources from elsewhere had helped to reimburse the amount. As usual, his programmed mind pointed to “aliens” in Lagos , who in his usually overwrought imagination, have been trying to do his government in.
Perhaps these were the same forces that helped him to steal the vote so brazenly in April 2007? They were the same forces that mobilised the military to mow down innocent people in Ilesa and Osogbo during the crisis that greeted the stolen vote? Those were the same forces that make him such a character without vision, who did everything to steal power but after realised he had absolutely no idea what to do with that power, except blind hedonism and crony corruption!
This embattled governor, for the very short period that his doomed reign remains, had better face his problem like a man that he often brags he is. He had better have sound explanations for his reckless corruption of the Osun system.
Otherwise, he would just find himself in the cold, as helpless as his scammer cabinet now in disarray, when eventually the courts throw him out of his stolen gubernatorial cocoon. But then, that would be excellent news for our long suffering people of Osun State , would it not?