The Looting Machine is a book written by former Financial Times correspondent, Tom Burgis and describes how corruption has stopped Africa from rising. According to Bloomberg, the book explores how despite the huge natural resources available in Africa, the content still remains very poor.
The book also paid special emphasis on Nigeria and how our over reliance on oil for government revenue has proven to be the foundation of our problems. Bloomberg explains;
Nigeria’s reliance on oil for tax revenues also creates a perverse political dynamic: As Burgis puts it, “the ability of rulers of Africa’s resource state to govern without recourse to popular consent.” Instead of having to do right by taxpayers to win their votes, politicians focus on controlling and dispensing mineral wealth to bolster their patronage networks.
“Politics becomes a game of mobilizing one’s ethnic brethren,” Burgis notes – a contest with dangerous destabilizing effects in Nigeria’s fractious polity. In fact, as one Nigerian governor explains, if he failed to share the wealth, ill-gotten or otherwise, “I’ve got a big political enemy.”
Nigeria elected President Buhari in May 2015 mostly on the back of his promise to rid the nation of corruption. The president has gone ahead with his promise with the controversial arrest and detention of the former National Security Adviser, Sambo Dasuki his major move. He reiterated his opinion that Dasuki be remanded in prison despite several court pronouncements that he be released.