By Yemi Adebowale
Obiageli Ezekwesili, Nigeria’s former Minister of Education, and former World Bank vice president for Africa has questioned the credibility of former anti-corruption czar and EFFC Chairman, Mallam Nuhu Ribadu in an interview with Aljazeera.
Questioned by Head to Head on Aljazeera host, Mehdi Hasan about endemic corruption in Nigeria and Ribadu’s assertion (allegedly revealed via Wikileaks) that Obasanjo was more corrupt than Abacha, Oby refused to condemn her former boss and mentor President Olusegun Obasanjo, who ruled between 1999 and 2007. Rather, she questioned Ribadu’s credibility over the comment credited to him in a Wikileaks revelation, asking; “Why did you (Ribadu) wait until after the fact?”
Under pressure by Hasan, she conceded Obasanjo was “aware of the elements of corruption, and it was his responsibility to tackle” them, but categorically denied he was corrupt himself. Oby lamented that the government she was part of was not able to “succeed fully” in tackling corruption, and defended her own track record, saying she had not been “window dressing” for a corrupt regime and insisting – despite holding two ministerial positions in the Nigerian government, being an advisor to presidents and holding high office at the World Bank – that she was not a politician.
Below is a link to the full Aljazeera video clip where Dr. Ezekwesili spoke about Boko Haram, the failure of the Nigerian political class, corruption under Obasanjo amongst other issues: