Stealing and Corruption: The Big Difference


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First, it was President Goodluck Jonathan that said there’s difference between stealing and being corrupt.

“People have been confusing corruption with stealing. If public officers steal money they term it under corruption.”

Yeah, the truth is there are more than enough differences between the two terms: stealing has eight letters while corruption on the other hand has ten letters, that’s one.

Two, my WordWeb defined corruption as ‘lack of integrity or honesty (especially susceptibility to bribery); use of a position of trust for dishonest gain‘ while stealing is ‘the act of taking something from someone unlawfully.’

Before going further, the two points above affirmed that there are distinct differences between the two terms. Enough said; besides the president is a doctor for crying out loud.

Even the chairman of the Independent Corrupt Practices and other related offences Commission, Mr Ekpo Nta is with the president on this that there’s different between the two.

“Stealing is erroneously reported as corruption. We must go back to what we were taught at school to show that there are educated people in Nigeria. We must address issues as we were taught in school to do”.

Just as we use to say in secondary school in concluding a debate, the president and the ICPC chairman have succeeded in confusing us and not convincing us. As my people would put it in Yoruba, ‘oro ti akuwarapa ba so, orun lo ti wa’ that is ‘statement from an epileptic patience is from heaven,’ that’s literary translation tho Smiley. And we are talking about the boss of an anti-corruption agency here abi.

That might even be the reason the former Aviation Minister, Stella Oduah is not in the custody of ICPC or her sister agency, the EFCC.

The bottom line of the ICPC chairman’s speech to our elected officials is that they are free to steal, they should just make sure that they are not corrupt about it – interesting!

Let’s face it; our leaders are scamming us, BIG time. Stealing as defined above is taking from someone unlawfully, and corruption is using a position of trust for dishonest gain.

We entrusted the affairs of the nation into some hands and they are doing away with the nation’s resources without our consent. I think that’s using a position of trust for dishonest gains as well as taking from us without our consent.

I once read that someone bagged life imprisonment for ‘stealing’ N17, 000 cash and a mobile phone worth N4, 500 – a theft of approximately N21, 500. And an assistant director in the Police Pension Office defrauded the nation of N27.2 billion and gets just two years’ imprisonment with an OPTION of fine of N750, 000.

I rest my case here, please use the comment section below for your thought. Meanwhile, there’s love in sharing – that’s why the sharing button is below Smiley.

Image Credit: Naija Nani

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