Nigeria, Our Surname Is Corruption…

Posted: December 2, 2012 in Uncategorized

By Prince Charles Dickson

A woman has a child by you and you still say you do not see her inside “know her mind”; would you have her expose her intestines?

Today, my admonition is targeted at the people of Nigeria…when I say we, let me use it as it appears in the Nigerian constitution…

“We the people of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, having firmly and solemnly resolve, to live in unity and harmony as one indivisible and indissoluble sovereign nation under God, dedicated to the promotion of inter-African solidarity, world peace, international co-operation and understanding, …for the purpose of promoting the good government and welfare of all persons in our country, on the principles of freedom, equality and justice, and for the purpose of consolidating the unity of our people; AND ENGAGING IN ALL FORMS OF ILLEGALITY/­LAWLESSNESS AS IT IS PROFITABLE IN OUR SYSTEM UNDER THE BROAD NAME NIGERIA and ‘CORRUPTION’ AS SURNAME.

The last take of the above paragraph in capital is mine. Many including this writer have argued that Nigeria’s problem is largely that of leadership, bad governance, electoral malpractice, feeding bottling federalism, ethnicity, religious conflicts, lack of good roads, poor healthcare, et al, all anchored on corruption.

But the truth is that corruption in Nigeria is not a political affair or leadership matter. Corruption in Nigeria is a case of all of us.

A woman has a child by you and you still say you do not see her inside…In my alumni, the University of Jos, it cost several thousands of naira to get admission whether you are qualified or not. It varies from as little as N20-200k depending on the field of study or the link-man/woman, is he or she ASUU or NASU, an ordinary lecturer or professed professor?

Its not a Unijos thing, it is across most federal and state universities, polytechnics and even unity secondary schools…hands are greased, all manner of frauds are perpetuated, students are asked to pay all manners of bills ‘acceptance’, ‘caution’, ‘language’ and ‘computer’ fees incorporated into tuition.

You buy handouts and you pass whether you opened it or not, it is often the tutors’ gateway to passing his subject.

In 2012, bail is still not free, and women cannot be admitted to bail a suspect or accused. You report a case, you are responsible for purchasing stationary or fueling the patrol van, and from complaint, in a minute you could be the accused.

Taulpaul Oselen captures it when he shares… “I make N200,000/daily from ‘collections’ at the TINCAN port–that’s a Custom Officer.”

The LASTMA chap makes more money every week on the streets of Lagos from drivers, than his monthly pay. From adjusting of meters and reconnections of wires, the PHCN official makes several thousands on the side for services not provided.

Do you how much people pay for redeployment to NYSC officials, how much it cost to get ‘posted’ to lucrative states and parastatals and how our daughters engage in ‘sex for marks’, step up to ‘sex for service’ and finally ‘sex to be retained’.

The male folks just pay for or rather buy the marks, posting and job. Its a big business called ‘corruption’, an organized crime with willing buyers and those selling.

Recruitment into the Nigerian Police cost about N150k as a constable. Its applicable in the Civil Defense. Just like the various armed forces, civil service, and several government agencies.

Applicants for jobs in University College Hospital Ibadan have to pay N1k with the bank teller attached to the application for jobs. Millions of naira ripped from desperate unemployed populace by her very own in acts that is nothing but corruption.

The official cost of the Nigerian passport is less 10k but visit an immigration office, you must pay ‘facilitation fee’ if you need it properly done and in good time.

“To speed up the process, applicants have to put ‘small something’ in an envelop for me, so their documents can reach my boss.” That’s the MD’s secretary.

If you don’t ‘sort’, your file will simply disappear and reappear only at the right price. ‘Supposedly’ responsible parents buy ‘exam leaks’ for their kids irrespective of class/status.

“I know your story is of utmost importance to Nigerians but if you are not willing to share the ‘brown envelope’, I’m sorry I’ll have to cover something more profitable for me.” That’s Mr. Journalist talking. If the envelope is heavy, lies can sail.

You are faced with a queue either to board a cab, use an atm, purchase fuel–you pay to jump the line or to prove you know the boss, you break the rules. We are almost all guilty.

We don’t run a monarchy so leadership largely stems from citizenry. So even the very patriotic few almost take the surname because ‘his people’ will encourage him to ‘please steal o’, it is our turn to benefit from the surname corruption.

An EFCC suspect paid tithes with stolen monies. Off course private jets must be flown.

Affidavits are hot cakes because lying about our age is lucrative, you must be 26 as of your last birthday with NYSC discharge certificate and have not less than 3 years experience. So after deducting several years on the resume we still include Muslim/Christian on it as faith.

The ‘big boys’ don’t do carrying of ballot boxes, they don’t kill directly, they give ‘us’ peanuts, they know us, they were once one of us. The problem is us…with a little prodding we take on the surname corruption.

Corruption has no religion, an imam and reverend collaborated to swindle faithfuls in Taraba, we fight each other in the name of natives, non-indigenes but deep down we only await our opportunity to ‘chop’ from the national cake.

‘Pay’, ‘collection’,’runs’, ‘sorting’, ‘kicks’, ‘pay’, ‘facilitation fees’, ‘drop’, ‘chop money for the boys ‘are some of the few terms used to denote corruption.

A woman has a child by you and you still say you do not see her inside “know her mind”; would you have her expose her intestines? Let’s forget those stealing billions, how about you looting a few hundreds, thousands, and millions. Are we really ready to do a change of name from corruption to integrity. Time will tell.


  1. Every country on the face of the earth encourages tips and gifts as well as gratification. It is just that Nigeria’s own is endemic and too obvious..

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