Wednesday, 19 June 2024 04:44

Editorial: Here’s a toast to the President as he goes after cable thieves, rail track vandals

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In a stunning display of keen insight, President Bola Tinubu has pinpointed the true architects of Nigeria’s economic woes: the small-time cable thieves and railway vandals. While some naïve souls might suggest that our troubles stem from corrupt leaders, wasteful public spending, bad policies, and fraudulent elections, Tinubu knows better. It’s the petty criminals, scraping by in poverty, who are sabotaging the economy.

During a visit from a National Assembly delegation in Lagos on the occasion of Eid-el-Kabir, Tinubu urged Nigerians to change their mindset. He passionately described the havoc wreaked by citizens who dare to steal electric cables and dismantle rail tracks. “Yes, there is poverty; there is suffering in the land,” Tinubu acknowledged. But clearly, it’s not the N15 trillion coastal highway awarded without transparency or the systemic corruption involving ex-governors and public officials that’s the issue. No, it’s the desperate acts of survival by the destitute.

The President, surrounded by the epitome of integrity – the leadership of the National Assembly – called for a shift in values. Imagine the nerve of those hungry souls, daring to smuggle and engage in economic sabotage. The real crime is not the trillions siphoned off by the elite or the fraudulent elections undermining democracy. No, the true sabotage is stealing a piece of wire.

Tinubu’s unwavering determination to address these “saboteurs” is commendable. Why focus on the entrenched culture of sleaze or the corrupt judiciary when you can target the marginalized, those with no choice but to engage in petty theft? After all, solving the issue of hunger, lack of infrastructure, and banditry is secondary to teaching the impoverished a lesson.

Meanwhile, a newly released global report from the Open Society Foundations highlights the endemic corruption hindering Nigeria’s development. But who needs global consensus when Tinubu has it all figured out? While the report suggests that deliberate strategies to combat ingrained corruption are necessary, Tinubu’s focus remains steadfastly on the small-time criminals.

And let’s not forget the accolades for the coastal highway – a shining example of due process abuse and misplaced priorities. Who cares about transparency when there are cable thieves to catch?

In conclusion, we must salute our President for his clarity of vision. While the world may scratch its head over Nigeria’s economic decline, he knows the real culprits: the downtrodden and desperate. Here’s to changing mindsets – but only for those who can’t afford to dine at the table of grand corruption.

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