THE Immunity for Thieves in the Nigerian Constitution

 Adeola Aderounmu

The part of our constitution that grants immunity to governors, presidents and other thieves that have been in public positions or power in Nigeria is very appalling.I can imagine that that part was written be some thieves too.

So in essence, our constitution gives room for stealing and looting of public funds without liability to prosecution.This is very ridiculous and it is the height of madness in public service.

There are many reasons why public officers should resign from office or be dismissed. Tax evasion and falsification are 2 examples among numerous scandals in the Nigeria Political terrain. Looting is the greatest crime. Invariably, almost everyone who is expected to serve in Nigeria turned out to be a thief of some sort. 

In other places, people can be probed immediately they are alleged to be involved in financial misappropriation and they can be prosecuted immediately and disgraced out of office. In Nigeria, that is not the case. We have to wait until they have left office. In the end, many of them get away with the looting.

There is no way we can make progress in Nigeria unless we start to ask for honesty and sincerity in public offices. If we continue to look the other way because our family and friends are beneficiaries of this looting, the majority will continue to suffer and that is not fair. The life of the citizens should not be based on “lucky chances” to get into privileged positions, it should be based on equality, mutual consideration and the good of all.

I am looking forward to Nigeria been able to delete completely (not amend) that part of the constitution. A new section should be written to state that anyone found wanting with public funds should go to jail. There should be no questions about that. What is bad is bad, it has no alternative name.

If we don’t do that, then I am afraid that the war on corruption will continue to be a fruitless chase. It will only exist in our imaginations.

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