CNPP challenges OBJ, IBB to refund stolen loot

Former leaders, Olusegun Obasanjo, and Ibrahim Babangida, have drawn stinging criticisms for their remarks advocating community involvement in resolving the rising insecurity in the country.

The Conference of Political Parties (CNPP) said Messrs Obasanjo and Babangida, should return the billions of dollars stolen during their administrations first before advising the government on matters of insecurity.

“We wish to call on Generals Obasanjo and Babangida to fast-track intensive community involvement by returning the billions of United States Dollars {USD} stolen under their watch,” the group said.

The past rulers had said in a joint statement on Sunday they would welcome an opportunity to help bring a solution the escalating security crisis. They called on greater community involvement in negotiations the government may adopt.

Mr. Babangida later said on Monday they were asked to intervene by President Goodluck Jonathan.

In a sharply worded reaction, the umbrella body of the political parties said the comments smacked of hypocrisy as the billions stolen during the governments of the two leaders would have been enough to employ the restive youth.

“It is our candid view that if the billions of USD siphoned during the Gulf War Oil Windfall under General Babangida’s watch and billions of USD fleeced off under General Obasanjo’s watch are returned to the federation account, it is enough to fully engage millions of unemployed youths,” the statement signed by spokesperson, Osita Okechukwu, said.

Speaking further, the CNPP said “It is indisputable that the monies stolen under the two regimes are more than enough to complete the Mambilla Hydro-Power -Plant, Kano-Lagos and Maiduguri-Port Harcourt Modern Rail- lines and two Refineries of 500.000 barrels per day capacity” adding that “this could have stimulated employment and kept the Boko Haram insurgents, kidnappers and other scoundrels busy. This is real community involvement”.

The group said while it welcomes the “noble, patriotic and passionate” resolve of the two leaders to bring their wealth of experience to bear on the current prevailing security situation in the country, they said such “must be matched with action.”

“Is it not hypocrisy on the part of the two leaders who with their cronies looted the monies which could have changed the face of our fatherland and turned round the decayed social services, dilapidated infrastructure and gross unemployment to mount moral high ground and pontificate?

“It is fresh in our minds how Obasanjo rebuffed the entreaties of the Swiss government to include other looters of our commonwealth in his request for Sani Abacha’s looted fund.”

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