JJ. Omojuwa: How to Defeat the EFCC or Die Trying

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission “carry” you? What’s there? It simply means you have arrived! Whatever you do, never plead guilty! The EFCC’s budget is not even up to N15bn, yet as a bonafide big thief worth N25bn, you already know you can match the EFCC naira for naira. Remember that its budget will not even be used to fight you alone, it has to fight other big thieves like you. When broken down per capita thief per thief, the EFCC probably has just about N100m to fight you. Before the battle gets started, your advantage over the EFCC cannot be over-emphasised but you must do more.

This is the time to remember you are a Christian and do not forget that the President is a Muslim. Every political battle is a battle of narratives before anything else, so you must make sure to sponsor analysts to critique the President’s inclination towards only going after thieves who are Christians. Some “oversabi” people will try to point out to you that he is also going after Muslims but that is not your business; your business is to focus on your agenda and spend and spend until you believe your narrative is actually the truth. In this game, the truth takes the shape of the glass you want it, the truth is not absolute here. Remember to let people know that the EFCC is coming after you because you are not from Daura. Have you not noticed that nobody from Daura has been charged by the EFCC? So, scream until Nigerians believe you. Let me tell you something about an average crowd, they do not exactly care for the truth, they care for who is able to dress their own truth best.

This is not the time to be wearing suits up and down; wear your traditional attire. You will need to be seen as being persecuted because of the “continued marginalisation of our people!” Who cares? It is not your business whether there is federal character in the comity of thieves. You will need to hire ethnic entrepreneurs whose nuisance value amounts to political value at this time. They are the ones to organise widows with husbands at home who just need the N1000 you pay to their wives after a successful protest against the government for “witch-hunting” you. I suggest you do not even use “witch-hunt” because it has been over-used and is now faded. Don’t say, “I am being witch-hunted,” because people will say that is all the big thieves say when they are caught; so, you must differentiate your brand from those other thieves by saying, “I am being isolated for persecution.”

You cannot do this on your own. The easiest way to perish as a thief in Nigeria is to try to eat alone. You eat alone, you go down alone! So, organise some money for social media, you need people using your photo on their profile pictures and the #FreeBigThief (replace your name with Big Thief) hash tag will come in handy. This one is not expensive, you can give some of those people N5,000 and you are good to go. See, spare some money for analysts who cannot defend you directly but can scatter the conversation so that people can no longer understand if President Muhammadu Buhari is even fighting corruption or he is abusing human rights. These analysts are easy to identify; just look for the people that are quiet when people return stolen money or people who never bother to speak about human rights when the poor are abused. They are very loud when the conversation is about human rights and the rule of law but only when this rule is about how it applies to big yet-to-be-convicted thieves. Your media agenda will not be complete without some strategically placed articles in the newspapers.

Nigeria is a complex country; you must use that complexity to your advantage. Tweet about how you just finished hosting another student group and some tweets showing the visit to your house by Nigerians of other ethnic coloration does your national credibility a lot of good. Power is nothing without control, a Nigerian politician equals to zero without a sell-out crowd! Do not be naïve asking how to get a crowd screaming your name. N1000 times 2,000 is just N2m. So, with N5m, you can have a crowd of 5,000 people welcome you home on your return having secured a N500m bail. See, no one dares a loud crowd motivated by money!

Your job is not done! You need an international agenda to do with your local moves. You know Buhari used to be known as a dictator, all you need now do is wear him that cap again! You should be smarter than to think he will agree to wear such in this modern world where being a dictator is being regarded as being the modern Mussolini. He won’t agree to wear the cap but you can dress him in absentia. There are many willing foreign media consultants especially in Washington and London who will help you pen strategic, “Is Nigeria’s Buhari Really the Born-Again Democrat He Claims To Be?” or even more direct ones like, “Buhari Is The Reason Nigeria Is Failing!” Look, the credibility of the author does not matter, it does not matter if even in his or her own country, the author is worth the price of two used tissue papers; what matters is that the article is on a foreign platform. Nigerians may not buy whatever you sell but once you package it inside a foreign attire, we “go buy am samsam!”

Your job is still not done. To whom much is given, much is expected so to whom Baba Daz sent too much money, much he must do, to survive the onslaught of the law! If you do all these and you don’t get the best lawyers, you will amount to a big fool who spent millions of naira trying to host a party but without good food and good music. It will only end in a disaster! Whether you are a Christian, Muslim or a mixture of one of them and some African religion, you must know that once the EFCC is after you for stealing, your prayer must now go straight to your lawyer o! That prayer will of course fail if not backed by the right billions. See, lawyers never lie; they only want to win in court. Meanwhile, do not steal N25bn and then hire a N25,000 lawyer, you will go to jail faster than it takes Usain Bolt to finish a 100m race and you’d have deserved it. Because not only are you a thief, you are a dishonourable thief! LOL. No one steals to “chop alone”, you steal most of it for yourself; you leave some for a possible refund or where you don’t want to be seen as a chicken that budged easily, you leave some for all of the above.

All of these would be useless without an illness. It does not matter that you have been hale and hearty through all your years of fruitful stealing, an illness is your fastest route towards getting a bail and possibly an opportunity to go see your doctors abroad. You are the only one who needs to know your doctor is simply the person in charge of helping to move your loot to safe havens.

By the time you do all of these, Buhari’s tenure would be closing in on its full mandate. Who knows, the next president could even apologise to you, return the money collected from you and even top it up with a national award. Except of course Buhari institutionalises the war and makes it hard for the next president to reverse the gains against unrepentant thieves like you. You do not want that, you must begin to identify the thief you want to run as president even now. See, uneasy lies the head that wears a crown, your own head will carry fire! Corruption must fight back, it needs you as a soldier! A Looting Continua!

PS: This sarcastic piece can also be found on Nigeria’s Punch Newspaper of 13th July, 2016