While still whimpering and crying over the proposed fuel subsidy and how it will affect our country, and the possibility of a rising bank interest rate, as well as increasing dollar to Naira exchange, I heard this out-of-the-world story. It blew me away totally and I was at the verge of giving up on this country.
After the just concluded mirage called elections, over 6000 direct data capturing (DDC) machines were stored in the INEC office. Recently, we were told that about 1388 of the DDC machines were stolen, the internal hard disk of another 2986 units and batteries of 644 units were also stolen. Now to me, this is the greatest irony I have seen in recent times. I was listening to Inspiration FM and someone gave an analogy which I want to re-present on this platform.
In studio, there is always a studio manager who is responsible for everything in the studio. If something gets missing there, the studio manager will be held accountable for these items and if he/she had delegated authority for whatever reasons, the person delegated will he held responsible. Now, if this is the case, then there is someone probably called a store manager who was responsible for the safe keeping of the DDC machines.
In case you think the DDC machine is like the size of mobile phones, you are wrong. The DDC machines are those laptops that were used to capture your data during the elections. Here we are talking about 20 per cent of the DDC machines stolen and no one can lay a finger on who should be held accountable for this.
I am trying as much as possible to remove my mind from the fact that to steal this number of machines, a car or bus was probably brought into the premises and these machines were moved into them under the glaring eyes of as many as might have been interested; and if you argue that they were stolen one after the other, how long will it take to observe that machines are being stolen if there is a daily audit of the store house which is a given for any store where items are kept?
We were told at a time that a ship was missing at sea and now 1388 DDC machines were stolen. I would not be surprised to hear tomorrow that an airplane is missing in the air or Aso Rock itself can no longer be found. The police are still telling us that they are investigating and questioning people on this issue. An issue I would have gotten to the root of if I was given the responsibility to do so, in less than 2 days.