- Prof Richard King accuses governors of not being supportive of the presidency's battle against corruption
- He feels the country is still in recession as the common man is living below the poverty line
- Richard believes that 2018 may not really have an impact positively on the Niger Delta
Professor Richard King, a chieftain of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and chairman, Presidential Committee on National Book Launch in an interview with The Nation accuses governors of being generally not supportive of President Muhammadu Buhari's crusade against corruption.
When asked what is his assessment of the anti-corruption fight of the federal government, he replied:
"The anti-corruption fight at the federal level is very good, but it should go down to all the states of the federation. For now, it appears like the anti-corruption fight is centred at Abuja, which is the central administration.
But to make it a national issue, it should go to all the states, whether PDP of APC control states. Corruption should be tackled head on. The fight against corruption is not supposed to be an APC affair alone. It is supposed to be a national fight."
The professor, in his opinion feels that governors are frustrating the efforts of the presidency to eradicate corruption.
He said: "It is just like in my state, Akwa Ibom, where the government went to court to stop EFCC from investigating the account of state. It therefore means that they are abetting crime, if the governor himself is stopping EFCC from carrying out their responsibility, it means, he is encouraging corruption.
"It is not only Udom Emmanuel, other governors are doing the same thing, so if the hands of those governors are clean, they should open up their various states, let anti-corruption agencies come and do their jobs."
According to Richard King, the country is still in recession, since the common man out there is still hungry, while struggling to survive. He remarked: "As far as I am concerned, so many people are still lamenting of hunger. In that sense, at the macro level, the economy must have improved, but at the micro level.
It has not really touched the lives of the people, else, hunger wouldn’t still be there in the villages. So the federal government should ensure that the economy also improves at the micro level."
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As to whether the 2018 budget will impact on the Niger Delta region, Richard said:
"First of all, you know the Niger Delta has been a very special development area, since 1958, that was when the colonial administration fashioned out the Niger Delta for special development and it is left for the federal administration to make sure that initial plan stays.
"We have always had problems in the Niger Delta because of marginalisation...the current administration has not really invested enough or earmarked enough funds for the development of the region."
On if his intention to run as governor is due to his low estimation of his governor, Udom Gabriel Emmanuel, he replied:
"No, it can be because of my ambition, the generality of the people know that the governor is not performing well, my coming into the governorship race is to bring the needed development to the state.
"So at the end of the day, Akwa Ibom people will speak on who to be the next governor of the state.
"It is not just enough to stay and do nothing, then all you say, i am the governor of Akwa Ibom state, yet you are unable to deliver to the people. I have what it takes to rule this state and ensure that hunger and poverty are driven out of the boundary of Akwa Ibom state."
NAIJ.com reported that that the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) had said that the attack on a farmhouse belonging to commission’s acting chairman, Ibrahim Magu, will not deter it from its resolve to rid Nigeria of corruption.
Unidentified armed persons on Tuesday night had attacked an unoccupied residence belonging to Magu, located on a farm in Karshi, a suburb of Abuja.
Meet Sunny Ofehe, the new face of Niger Delta development on NAIJ.com TV