Every Nigerian tend to express dismay over the level of corruption in the country. But as time unfolds, it turned out that those who express dismay over leadership failure in Nigeria soon become what they criticize. Jason describes Nigerians ac hypocrites who lament corruption in government because they are not the one stealing.
Major Assumption of Jason’s Law
The major assumption is Jason’s Law is that all Nigerians in government and those outside government are same thieves as those not in government are not better off.
The decibel of an average Nigerian’s public outcry is directly proportional to his distance from the opportunity to do exactly what he condemns.
Jason held that Nigerians outside government are only biding their time, waiting to displace those in power so that they can ‘out-steal’ them.
By inference, Jason mean that the difference between many pontificating, sanctimonious and vociferous Nigerians and the itchy-fingered, villainous and kleptomaniac is probably the absence of the opportunity to steal.
Jason also inferred that the farther the distance between a Nigerian (African) and power-authority position, the higher the noise he makes against acts of corruption. However, the nearer he is to the position, the lesser the noise he makes. And when in the position, the noise ceases.
Jason held that in any circumstance where such opportunity presents itself, the moral crusader of yesterday is likely to do the same thing, crumble and disappear in the forest of corruption.
In comparison with what have happened in the paste under military rule when Jason propounded this law till today’s civilian rule, now twenty four years after, Jason now buttressed his earlier theory that “I have hinted at what I call the ambivalence of Nigerians about corruption. Indeed, what I mean is that we are all hypocrites about our concern over corruption. Otherwise how is it that very often those who are ostensibly in pursuit of transparency or those fighting corruption are invariably caught in the very act of corruption? What I see most times are people who are incensed that someone else is doing the stealing, and not them. Given half a chance, they out-steal the people they were criticizing yesterday.”
The recent Magu indictment in corruption cases awakens Jason and his law back from the grave to be part of the conversation on how to outlaw corruption in Africa.
From Jason’s Law, we can infer that as long as a sitting government lives only for its members and their families and hangers-on, all of whom are perceived to have exclusive and unrestricted access to the public treasury, there won’t be a death blow to corruption. Therefore, the Nigerian government must operate an all inclusive government.
An understanding of Jason’s Law of Corruption therefore teaches that to tackle official and unofficial corruption and earn us an honourable place in the league of nations, we must halt the graft competition sparked by a government that runs an insular philosophy. We must have policies that accommodate every citizen in the spread of society’s boon.
When we are all close to the wealth of the nation and generously exposed to what will keep body and soul together, no one will complain or resort to corruption to make ends meet. Conversely, when we are placed far away from the scene of prosperity, “the decibel of our outcry” outmatches that of the loudest disco music.