It is insufficient that Britain bars a few ministers of state, who are transparently corrupt. For more than half a century, Britain has harbored and insulated from deportation and prosecution, kleptomaniacs and enemies of economic solvency in Africa. Remember Umaru Dikko and Yakubu Gowon, who appropriated millions of Nigeria's monetary and mineral resources and bankedthe same in England, to which they fled, later. Such resources still produce substantial profit,re-investment fund, employment, and product research in the United Kingdom, at Nigeria's expense, 30 or more years, after!
To earn any accolade for the ban on minister, ChrisMurungaru, Britain must proceed to launch immediateaccounting of looters of African, state treasuries andtheir cohorts -- British banks, corporations, stateofficials, and private individuals -- who must beforced to disgorge the stolen lucre!!
Britain must return the loot and all interests and shares of profit they have generated over the years!!!
I wager that, Britain will not be as bold to act in this direction!!!! Why? Because, 1) billions of Euro, which are stolen from Africa, energize Britisheconomy; 2) Piracy is a part of British value,tradition, and legacy. Remember the Crown-Knightpirates? And 3) many ENGLISH, political princes anduntouchables are connected with the ethnoculturallyacceptable ethic of dispossessing others, especiallynon-European others, to enrich the English treasury.Remember John Major; what about Mark Thatcher, and acavalcade of extra-colonial peons, and modern daygalleons, who and which subserve Englishbullion-interests? These are the reasons why!!!!!
Recall Kenneth Kaunda's "Britain is a toothless bull-dog barking around Ian Smith but fearing likemad..."? Unlike the mass, English citizenry, those, who rise to economic and political prominence in Britain tend to be they, who are bereft of moralfervor to spite theirs or the English face, how muchmore, cut a nose to achieve a modicum of decency. InEngland, accumulating wealth is such an over-poweringethos that, a person's economic worth at time ofdecease is published as a part of the obituary. It issocially reductive and paltry, for an obituary to read"S/he left two thousand pounds...."
In any case, while ENGLAND remains a welcoming port for corrupt Africans -- politicians, public servants, and other categories of thieves, the problem of graftis an African problem, and has to be solved in Africaby Africans. But, can it, when Africans -- virtuallyone and ALL -- lionize anyone, who steals publicresource. In Igbo and Yoruba culture, such robbersearn public adulation and praise, not opprobrium.Nearly every Nigerian singer has produced a song, notin praise of a committed scientist, physician seekinga cure for Africa's myriad diseases, an engineerstruggling to invent a solution to an African problem,or social scientist trying to elucidate a communalissue, but always a kleptomaniac, who succeeds inlooting funds from an employer, be it a government orpublic/private corporation. A few years ago, a cousinof mine looted his own employer's treasury, acommercial bank. Not a member of the clan who assistinvestigators, although, several knew where he hid, inTogo. When he returned to Nigeria, two years later, hebecame a social star and was encouraged to seekchieftaincy, in a tradition, where succession to sucha rank, office, and title had always been inherited,not BOUGHT! His father died on his way from one of thehundreds of court appearances occasioned by his son'santi-historical claim to an undeserved title. One yearlater, to the day, he too, died on his way fromanother hearing.
Even as I write, at least one colleague in the academe longs to gain appointment to a commission, in his home state, in Nigeria. He travels home several times and, if he is truthful, brings to the US, his relative's loot, which he banks in a US bank. He, too reasonsthat, "this is the only way to make it in Nigeria...."
In my formative years, in Lagos and among my people, the Igbo, I witnessed and heard my elders pour libation at clan gatherings. An incomplete wording of such libation included invocation of our ancestors to "guide us, as we seek and attain possession of ourshare of wealth from the public space and "orun beke"(white man's employment); may the "white" man be blindto and inept at interdicting our scheming; may we besuccessful at bringing the loot home; may our homebecome prosperous therefrom; and may our ancestors behonored by our triumph."
The essence of an invocation, such as the foregoing, is an assumption, which may be powerful in African consciousness, that employment outside the homeland, is forced, unrequited, and exploitive labor; that it favors the employer, so much more than the laborer,that employee counter-action, such as pilfering, is justified chivalry; a bold, risk-taking, to sabotage an enemy's machinery of exploitation!
Is it? Is such ethic grounded?
This may have been understandable, when Africa bled under ruthless, colonial jack-boots. Is it, now?
What imperatives, social, political, and cultural support graft? What forces compel Africans to descend into corruption? Why did former, moral crusaders, such as Lateef Jakande, succumb eventually, to joining a government?
When one considers the level of inequity in compensation schemes in public service and privatesector employment, in Nigeria, graft and stealing appear to become just recompense. Are they?