Don’t compare yourselves to Obama, Mandela, Akanbi tells Nigerian political leaders

Former chairman of the Independent Corrupt Practises and other related offences Commission, Justice Mustapha Akanbi yesterday cautioned Nigerian political leaders to desist from comparing themselves with world leaders on the basis that they have failed short of the sacrifices set by such leaders.

Akanbi spoke at the annual Daily Trust dialogue just as Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, Prof. Attahiru Jega, at the same occasion reassured Nigerians that reports of the purchase of Permanent Voter Cards, PVCs by politicians would amount to nothing as it would be a useless venture. Jega assured that results of the forthcoming elections would be electronically transmitted from the spot to avoid rigging.

Former chief of army staff, Gen Abduraman Danbazau also present at the occasion revealed the existence of several political armies maintained by politicians for electoral advantage.

Speaking on the occasion, Akanbi who did not mention anybody, but adverts on President Goodluck Jonathan on television have compared him with world leaders such as President Barack Obama of the United States and South Africa icon, Nelson Mandela.

“Today some people are comparing themselves with Li Kwan Yun, Barack Obama, Martin Luther King and Nelson Mandela.”

“If youhave read about Li Kwan Yun, those who were corrupt in his country when he decided to fight corruption, they preferred to commit suicide than to face Li Kwan Yew. Mandela spent 27 years in prison and yet that man spent one term in office and decided to step aside.

“These are people who suffered for the people. People who did not plunder the people and when you are making comparison to get votes you must tell the people the truth. What did they do? Are you doing the same thing?”

He said that Nigerian leaders failed to make necessary sacrifices that other world leaders make and that if Nigerian politicians were actually out to serve, “there will be few people to compete”.

He added, “The reason is that we don’t make service to the people our goal. Take Kwara for instance, for the governorship election for one party, 14 people wanted to be the governor and if you look at the curriculum vitae of some of them they are not even qualified to be messengers.”

The retired justice noted that Nigerians could “make or mar our future through this election. The die is cast. The challenge is true. There can be no retreat, no surrender. The history of our generation can only be the measure and of our loyalty and devotion to the right ideals of our nation”.

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