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Why grant asylum to economic and political criminals?

August 14, 2009

 

Take look at history and you will realise that several people who have plundered various African countries with or without the complicity of western, fellow African and Asian country leaders either in the domain of politics and the economy, have either died out of their country of origin or been granted asylum in some “safe havens”.

 

On the contrary, the real people who need protection, who have been or are being persecuted by the system organised by dictators, many are refused the right of asylum or protection be in permanent or temporal.

 

Internal conflict, war and even genocide are often directly linked to bad governance, embezzlement; impunity and injustice. These are the products of failed regimes and failed systems.

 

 

However, various head of regimes and their accomplices who often steal their nation’s wealth and starch in foreign banks, shuttle in and out of their countries with their families and friends as they want and are always able to get asylum some where to enjoy stolen wealth when the tides seem to turn against them.

 

I strongly believe that inasmuch as we have always advocated the need for many western as well as Asian countries not to make their banks acts as safe heaven for stolen wealth, then turn around and condemn corruption; it is high time these countries stop acting as refuge for economic and political atomic bombers who have ruined most of Africa.

 

The Congolese (Zairian) dictator and one of the highest economic thieves of our time, Mobutu Sese Seko died miserably in Morocco, despite haven embezzled billions of dollars and starched in French and Swiss banks as well as having assets in these countries among others. This is the same person who with the help of outsiders including the UN killed the man, Patrice Lumumba who would have changed the fate of Congo Kinshasa from the bloody and world cake we have today.

Mengistu Haile Mariam of Ethiopia is in Zimbabwe; Hissen Habré of Chad is in Senegal, Charles Taylor who successfully brought down the monster in the person of Samuel Doe seeked asylum in Nigeria though now meditating his fate at The Hague. Didier Ratziraka who has contributed in no way small way in ruining Madagascar economically and politically is in France, so too was Henri Konan Bedié former president of Cote D’Ivoire.

 

According to my Nigeria friend, almost all past and present state governors, presidents, ministers and other senior government officials in Nigeria, have at least a bank account and a house in the UK and US and most especially, in the UK. These assets are from ill-gotten wealth and these people with their family can live in any of these countries as long as they want whereas poor Nigerians are shown the way out.

 

The mismanagement, embezzlement and complicity of the same clique have contributed in no small way to the political strife, frustration, poverty, anger and all kinds of ills within the Nigeria society.

 

There are some perpetrators of the 1994 Rwandan genocide living freely in various countries in Europe and other parts of Africa. Such political criminals should be sent back to Rwanda for judgement though they would always argue that their judgement would not be fair. This is same for several people who during the Mobutu era, killed several people in Congo Kinshasa. They have left the country and are enjoying their stay outside.

 

In July 1992, the former vice president of Sierra Leone Abdulai Conteh who had held several ministerial posts in that country fled to Britain. He was accused of having embezzled millions of dollars from the country.

 

Even the British Home office described him as corrupt as he seeked asylum but again the same Conteh is today a strongman in the British Canary Islands.

Of course, he fled to Britain in 1992 where he had amassed much wealth and bought a house in Finchley. He even had the audacity to vie for the leadership of the AU Commission.

 

The case of Cameroon is not different. Though we have known just two presidents since 1960, President Amadou Ahidjo though can be said to have ensured a rather more economically stable Cameroon, cannot be spared to have political destroyed the country through his one party system, changing of the constitution and silencing of his opponents.

 

His successor, Paul Biya, is worst in all domains but for the pseudo freedom of expression in Cameroon. Surrounded by monsters, they have destroyed Cameroon in all dimensions and of course, most of these people are one way in one way out of the country.

 

In the late 90s, a certain Robert Messi Messi who was accused to have embezzled several billions CFA of Cameroonian savings in the SCB bank fled to Canada and was granted asylum.

 

Again, the former Minister of Public work Dieudonne Ambassa Zang’s parliamentary immunity was lifted on August 7, 2009 to investigate corruption charges levelled against him. However, before that was done, he had fled the country to the West and now seeking asylum too it is alleged.

 

There are so many of the criminals who conscious of their atrocities have taken double nationality in a country like Cameroon and ready to escape at any time. Personally, I do not even support the issue of dual nationality. People can choose between taking one nationality and opting for a permanent residence in another country.

 

Why should these people/leaders who destroyed their countries and caused millions to suffer economically, politically and socially be granted asylum for them so stay and enjoy the stolen wealth?

 

Fast developing nations have to review the issue of granting what so ever asylum to those who have destroyed their countries in all domains. Why must they be given the chance to enjoy stolen wealth and raise their children in peace when they refused to give the same opportunities to others while in power? All those who have held or are holding posts of responsibility in public offices must be held responsible for the atrocities they commit.

 

If laws in several countries could be changed to make sure that past leaders, dead or alive, guilty of corruption have all their assets seized even the houses in which their children live, that would be good. The only assets they should boast of given their children should be education and not stolen property.

 

African leaders and ministers who fall sick should not be treated in Europe. Let them build worthwhile hospitals in their countries. It is unacceptable to accept them do treatment there often with taxpayers money when the very taxpayers back at home not have a dime to treat mere fever.

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