Wednesday, 13 June 2012

The Integrity Coup & Other Stories...

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1.    To save the king, sacrifice the far Rook.
No doubts I am not the only one who ever thought Farouk and his Integrity Group were rather insufferably self-righteous. My view was not helped by the measured, deliberate gait and knowing smirk that always plays around the diminutive Rep’s lips. So, ordinarily, I should laugh and scoff at another reminder that in the “fallible realm”, we are all casualties (apologies JP Clark).  But I’m not laughing. I am merely shaking my head at the absolute lack of subtlety employed in a bid to bury yet another revealing Report. The intended logic is crisp: no noble end can be achieved through a flawed process. And typical of Nigerians, we are already falling over ourselves in condemnation and counter-positioning; relegating the very grave implications of the ‘subsidy fraud’ to the trenches. A chess-man’s master-stroke, this: play the far Rook in for the king. However this ends, I will not be bothered anymore. But we should take home a lesson to guide future Probes. A temporary cloak of immunity should be vested on every quasi-judicial panel, to curtail distracting allegations, true or not, at least for the duration of their assignments.  If all the judges in the country routinely answer imputations to their character, we will not move a step forward in justice delivery. And the Probe Report should stand as it is, on the facts available. Let every indicted party escape on the strength of his evidence, not on the morals of the arbiter. I rest.

2.    Rochas & the 4-tier National Cake
Irrespective of what his adversaries say, I think the affable Imo state leader is interestingly progressive. He doesn’t just think outside the box, he thinks beyond the room as well.   How else can you describe his dynamic interpretation of “growth in governance” expressed by birthing a younger sibling for the much maligned 3rd tier of government. He named this 4th tier, “Community Government”. By the time this gentleman is through with a possible 2nd term, Imo state will become a city of leaders, literally. There will be no ‘followers’’ left.  The next steps should include town-hall and kindred governments vested with the noble mandate of settling family disputes and drawing budgetary allocations accordingly. Pure genius!

3.    Death to Paedophiles!
Sickening story; but a perfect ending! A man in Texas caught a grown man fondling his 4 year old daughter and delivered lethal punches to the paedo’s head and neck. The man died. I double-dare the Law to as much as raise a single charge against this father, and it will expose itself as a blubbering ass after all. The dude should be awarded a hero’s medal and we do not even need to wade into fine legal lines of his duty under law to defend another from assault, or extreme provocation as the case may be.  Child sexual abuse is the lowest of the low, and death is even too easy a way out! The torture-experts in China fashioned a perfect legal regime to curb the evil tendency: Chemical castration. Yes, a bottle of bad fluids is injected into the abuser, and his cookie crumbles for life.  And this, from a country with a record of the most, well, modest lower-chambers.  Now you talk of Texas where everything is big! There’s no way that man was surviving the father’s ire. No frigging way!

4.    The Customer is always right (here to be played)
I ran into a friend the other day and he showed me an SMS alert stating that his Bank had deducted N3, 500 from his account in order to conduct a legal search on his company. He had just opened a corporate account for the said company. I stormed into the bank and let loose wildly. My position: At the time of opening the account, the customer tendered all requisite documents and references which the bank demanded, and the account was opened on the basis that the documents were presumed regular. Any extra act of due diligence should be borne by the bank! It is like telling the vendor of a piece of land to bankroll the buyer’s investigative search at the land registry.  I was making headway in my tirade, but oh dear! Trust Nigerians, the murmurs of an impatient queue met me headlong.  “Oga, na because of common 3, 5 you dey take our time?’’ This emboldened the hitherto cowering Bank Manager and he superciliously crooned “it is standard banking policy, sir. And if you don’t mind, please make way on the queue”.  Standard Banking policy? To sneakily pilfer a customer’s money without advance notice?  It is theft, theft! Theft!
Promising fire and brimstone, I turned to storm out of the building with my ‘client’...he was flirting with the Customer Care desk-lady, all smiles.
Good luck Nigeria!

Also published in THISDAY Newspapers, Tuesday June 19, 2012

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