''YES I STOLE THE MONEY'' (By James Onanefe Ibori)

''YES I STOLE THE MONEY'' (By James Onanefe Ibori)

Yes I stole the money!
But I've already asked God for forgiveness, and that's the most important thing.
I know you'll also find space in your heart to also forgive me.

Yes I stole the money!
I know they've already exposed billions of naira, in cash and property;
But that is still a tip of the iceberg!
And so I had to quickly halt further investigations and revelations, by admitting to the ones they've already found --- end of 'discussion'!

Yes I stole the money!
I know that Warri is now one of the most dangerous towns in Nigeria.
Yes I stole the money meant for youth development, youth empowerment, vocational and skill-acquisition trainings for youths, job creation!
If there was anybody who had the power to turn Warri right-side-up, I was the one!
Eight years mandate, fresh from military rule - What an opportunity!
I could have easily rallied the youths around me, and re-directed them to more profitable ventures!
They really believed in me, their yearnings, their aspirations, the desire in their eyes!
Their heart-beat for change! 
Their desire to cast away that evil image of 'Warri no dey carry last' in negative matters!
I'm truly sorry!

Yes I stole the money!
One of the richest States in Nigeria! 
My good friend once advised me, to raise the standard of health care in the State! 
To build at least one state-of-art Hospital, with cutting-edge technology!
To partner with Indian and American hospitals for appropriate technology transfer!
To halt the travelling-out of the wealthy to India, leaving the poor masses to their fate.
Indeed, I was approached by a number of Indian hospitals; 
We could have become a world-class health-destination hub in West Africa and the whole Africa!
Our doctors and health care professionals could have become better trained!
I'm so sorry!!!

Yes I stole the money!
Maternal and child health could have received a major boost from extensive Primary Health Care and Public Health Care investment!
We could have really achieved the United Nations Millennium Development Goals if we had made the least of efforts!
We could have cut-down drastically, maternal-mortality and infant and child morbidity and mortality.

Yes I stole the money!
Our university-trained mechanical engineers cannot produce engine blocks!
Some of our electrical engineers will not see a capacitor before graduation ~ except as diagrams in textbooks!
The handouts and mimeographs in our universities are 15years old ~ simply recycled year-after-year!
I had the opportunity to partner with a university in Dubai, for a drastic revision of curriculum for the Delta State University, but I missed that opportunity! 
Some Chinese universities also offered practical transfer of technology;
But at the time, I did't think it was a priority! Now I know better!
Delta State University could have easily surpassed any other in the country!
May God forgive me!

Yes I stole the money!
The money meant for Infrastructural development, Rural electrification, Pipe-borne water, good Road networks in the hinterlands; 
Electricity!!! How could we be complaining of lack of electricity, under the most intense sunlight in the world!!! 
My friends from other countries, during UN meetings, simply cannot believe it!!! 
Solar energy - free of charge - everywhere you look! 
Agricultural-production boost ~~~
Sesame seeds and GMDs! Palm produce that can grow in one year and start yielding by the second year!
Vast acres of unused land wasting away - God-given fertile land! A blessing from Heaven!
Cassava production, starch manufacturing, rubber plantations!!!
I simply lost it!

Yes I stole the money!
But the worst of it is that I'm not alone;
The lieutenants are not left out, sham contractors, inflated projects and kick-backs, the senior civil servants, the politicians and political god-fathers, the legislators, the judiciary, our girl-friends!!!
What is left for work? What is left for the poor masses? Tell me what is left?
Yes I stole the money! But at the time, I didn't seem to have a choice!

This idea of 'National Cake' and 'Cut as much as you can - while you can - even if you can't finish it', is really a cancer, I must confess!
It has ravaged me, it has finished all of us!
Who will deliver us? 
Who will save our future!!!

I'm truly sorry, and I urge my current successors to re-consider and be wiser.

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Comment by Fenzuu Sports on March 12, 2012 at 2:49pm

joing us here at legwork.com.ng - A meeting place for Nigerians

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