Nobel laureate, Prof. Wole Soyinka, yesterday said the anti-graft war of the current administration is on course and would not be swept under carpets.
Addressing reporters when the Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, paid him a visit at the Freedom Park, Ikoyi, Lagos, Soyinka said he was confident that established cases of corruption would be brought to logical conclusion.
He said government’s determination to give Nigerians a breathier atmosphere was fully manifested in its resolve to tackle correction headlong, noting that the President Muhammadu Buhari administration remains determined on this score.
He added that no corruption case would be foreclosed this time around.
On his optimism, Soyinka said: “The reason is that we have not had corruption being exposed on this scale before.
“We haven’t had a situation where it is being alleged and proved that the money supposed to be spent on defending ourselves, nation and neighbours has been shared among individuals.
“We have never had a case of critical emergency where children are being kidnapped under our noses, we are helpless and our soldiers have been sent to the front to defend our very existence and we are not backing them up. It has not happened before.”
Soyinka further said the fight against corruption is going to be a hard one, noting that it has already started.
He maintained that the administration has advanced the country beyond where it took over from the last administration.
“There is no doubt the country has made progress. We are not where we were before this new administration took over.
“Again, we just have to be very careful and I make this remark again and again. Corruption fights back and the hardest fighters are those already within the cesspit of corruption.
“So, the fight is on two levels; one, directly against corruption and the second is that you are going to prepare for a counter attack. That is where we are at the moment and there is no retreat.”
The Nobel laureate explained that anybody who has anything against him is free to prove it, stressing that it was libellons and act of desperation by some mischief makers to link him with such act.
“I am a great respecter of the law; if you go properly I will answer you.
The minister said government was working round the clock to showcase Nigerian culture across the country, noting that his office has drawn up a compendium on Nigerian festivals.
He said the festival would be packed to drive government’s youth employment and empowerment programme.
“There is going to be a festival of arts and crafts and by the time we finish it, we are going to have at least 365 festivals, which means we will be celebrating one festival per day. This will boost employment drive.
“We are going to work with all the states so that we can ensure its success. The most important aspect of it is actually the job creation.
“I am told of a particular masquerade in the Southeast, it takes over 100 people to dress it up and another 100 to undress it. So when that masquerade goes out, you are employing 200 able bodied men,” he said.