Obstacles before Ribadu


In life nothing remains permanent except change. That explains why thing become dissimilar or people change their attitudes or behaviors. That dictum could aptly be used to describe Malam Nuhu Ribadu’s records during and after he served as the anti corruption czar at the dreaded EFCC. His awe inspiring reign was characterized by hunting down disreputable and immoral persons that lined their private pockets with huge public funds and were condemned to longer jail terms and subsequently suffered the loss of their dignity and respect. Malam Nuhu discharged his responsibilities at EFCC creditably and earned public recognition and praises for that remarkable achievement. He was also decorated with several laurels locally and internationally for his gallant fight against the corruption monster.  Nuhu’s escapades as a predator that hunts criminals turned him into a prey of highly placed villains that succeeded in bringing him down. In that case his good services remained unrewarded by his original employers and also unrecognized by succeeding bosses who harassed and intimidated him until he fled to foreign shores where he sought refuge. Malam Nuhu’s exploits in dealing with corruption monster are legion. His sterling qualities for fighting corruption had once propelled him to deposit millions of dollars bribe money from one of the South-South Governors to the Central Bank and obtained a receipt. That remarkable and unprecedented feat passed unnoticed and unacknowledged by those who systematically subjected him to unfair treatment because of his transparent honesty and unimpeachable integrity. On his return from self-imposed exile from abroad Malam Nuhu became a favourite of all sundry and was courted everywhere like a beautiful bride. He ultimately found it expedient to join politics and to also pitch his tent with his principal adversaries who never see anything good about the region he hailed from or his ethnic stock which was reviled by unscrupulous politicians in the southern part of the country.  These fair-weather politicians rallied round Malam Nuhu and prompted him to run for the presidency under their clannish party.  Malam Nuhu eventually lost after his sponsors had forsaken him on the spur of the moment, making him a poor sacrificial lamb. He remained undaunted and resolute in his determination to fight corruption to the finish, and because of that he identified himself with the new All Progressive Congress which had created a remarkable impact on the downtrodden electorates.  Malam Nuhu naturally fitted into the party’s systematic plan of action to dethrone bad government and enthrone an all-purpose administration that will wipe out corruption. While Malam Nuhu was enjoying his privileged and exalted position in the party that values him highly, then the unexpected happened and his credibility was questioned. The incorruptible Nuhu was tempted by his erstwhile adversaries with the coveted position of Adamawa State governorship. That would require his defection from the masses-backed party, the APC to a notorious and tarnished PDP.  It was indeed an acid test for Malam Nuhu’s ability to resist any temptation. Alas! Nuhu failed woefully to adhere to his unwavering moral principles and surrendered to the whimsical demands of tainted politicians. People who received the news of Malam Nuhu’s defection were originally apathetic, but Malam Nuhu himself confirmed to the bewildering masses that he had committed hara-kiri, or simply put a political suicide. But how could Malam Nuhu be said to have committed such a costly blunder when he was enticed by the powers that could easily influence his victory? He was confident about the ability of a behemoth party to rig its way to power at any level of authority and was not, therefore, bothered by the barrage of criticisms over his ‘regrettable’ decision to abandon commitment to fighting bad governance especially as that involves supporting the party he had previously opposed. For that reason, therefore, Malam Nuhu could be in for a big surprise!  But a leopard will never change its spots. The PDP stakeholders are no fools and may accordingly never contemplate supporting a candidate who can impede their plans to loot the treasury after his victory.  Considering Malam Nuhu’s antecedents in the past, it would certainly not be possible for him to capitulate to any design that will compromise his integrity. His handlers are fully aware that he is bestowed with all the qualities of a winning candidate but they are unsettled with the prospects of his shutting the doors of the state’s treasury firmly to prevent free-for-all looting by party hags. It was generally believed Nuhu’s commendable attributes and good character could enable him to step into General Buhari’s shoes as his worthy successor and continue the struggle against corruption and allied vices, but with that development it is not clear if he would retrace his steps and fall in line with the forces that revere him highly. From all perspectives Malam Nuhu’s journey to Adamawa Government House would be arduous and tortuous. He would also need to overcome so many hurdles deliberately set before him by those he had trusted. Malam Nuhu has now crossed the first obstacle and may need tones of goodwill and providential intercession to reach his destination.


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