The Publicity Secretary of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Bolaji Abdullahi, has said that the best way President Muhammadu Buhari can end systemic corruption in the country is by providing basic necessities for the people and not just selecting individuals to be prosecuted by anti-graft agencies.
He said this in an interview with Osasu Igbinedion on TOS TV that was monitored by newsmen.
Abdullahi said that when people have access to basic amenities such as good transportation system, adequate Medicare, excellent education system, and stable power supply from the national grid; they are most unlikely to engage in acts of corruption.
He also said it is insanity for people to ‘steal’ billions from the national treasury when they don’t necessarily need all the money.
The former minister expressed his displeasure at the recent discovery of $9.2m found in the house of the former head of NNPC, Andrew Yakubu.
According to him, he was embarrassed to be part of a system where such grand theft among others took place.
He acknowledged that President Buhari has succeeded in defeating the Boko Haram terrorists as promised during the campaigns but will need to create more jobs through agriculture and solid minerals, and fight corruption holistically.
He said: “I’m telling you that apart from the corruption of greed which almost borders on insanity when people take billions they don’t need. There are people who engage on systemic corruption who pilfer and distort financial records just because they want to be able to get by.
“I am not making excuses for anybody, but I strongly believe that if we are able to build an effective transport system that makes it also unnecessary for everybody to want to own a car. If live in the UK especially in London, you will know having a car is a burden. You build an efficient medical system thatyou don’t have to have cash to access medical care, and it is guaranteed your child can go through good public school without having to pay through your nose. You don’t need to buy generator just because you want electricity; I think systemic corruption would have been cut by 70 percent.
“If you’ve seen a man whose wife is on the hospital bed in need of operation and he desperately needs cash, that’s not the time to preach to him about corruption.
“Wherever a government tries to implement its own understanding to an existing problem there will be losers and gainers; there will immediate pains and immediate gains.”