Of sophisticated corruption cartels and schemes

I have, since 2004, fervently listened to Capital Gang, a generally political radio talk-show hosted by Capital FM every Saturday. For anyone keen on keeping well abreast with political or similar issues apparently unfolding or prevalent, Capital Gangsters: seasoned politicians, special guests, and experts in choice fields normally discuss topical issues thereof.

Last weekend, Saturday, December 3, 2022, Inspector General of Government—IGG, Beti Kamya was the show’s special guest.  She eloquently articulated the synopsis and significance of commemorating this year’s International Anti-Corruption Day slated for next Friday in Ibanda, despite incessant corruption in the country and citizenry apathy about such an event.

I had silently held similar misgiving until the host, Simon Kasyate, brought it out as a ‘common joke’: that [paraphrased], it is feared that even resources set aside for such an event are misappropriated by corrupt organising officials. I still think so. Do we really need to spend more resources to commemorate such a day? It is a Catch-22!

My wonder came mainly from the fact that it has become increasingly cumbersome to effectively deter or even catch especially the big thieves—fish, so they are called, owing to their most sophisticated ways employed in executing their crime.

To lend credence to Chinua Achebe’s, thoughts in ‘Things Fall Apart’, “Eneke the bird says that since men have learned to shoot without missing, he has learned to fly without perching”, it is only the ‘foolish’—and ‘novices’ that are caught.

 The Masters-of-the-Game will be somewhere in luxury relishing on their loot! But while still agonised by this harsh reality, I was, the following day—last Sunday, treated to a sobering Church Sermon by Pr Henry Ssegawa of The Way to Heaven Church, Ntinda, that, except for hope in repentance and divine pardon, would have left me pondering hell’s imminence! Themed, “The Secret Sin that So Easily Entangles”, this Sermon, without bias, ought to be pondered by every citizen—even non-Christians, in this our country for which, “For God and My Country” is national Motto!

Anchored on Genesis 38:12-26; Ezekiel 33:1-11; and Revelation 18:1-9; etc., the aforesaid sermon centred largely around the analogy of how sexual immorality ruined great cities—the Great Babylon, being common reference.

Pr Ssegawa explained that sin is compared with sexual immorality in cities because the latter is usually committed—and concealed between two people, except, of course, when such consequences as pregnancy compel otherwise.

Corruption, in all its forms: theft or misappropriation of resources—monetary, material or time; nepotism; sectarianism; etc., is pervasion from expected good moral conduct.

This article focuses mainly on corruption with regard to theft or misappropriation of national monetary and material resources for selfish gain—individual or coterie, injurious to national development and/or transformation.

As sexual immorality concealed between two people eventually affects innocent spouses, friends and families of the culprits, corruption, too, ultimately spills grievously over to, and affects innocent citizens.

It stalls progress, exacerbates poverty and disease, and in extreme cases, costs us precious lives pivotal to socio-economic and political sanity. It must be uprooted shoot and branch!

My unforgettable take-home from the aforementioned sermon is that although we have for long smartly successfully concealed our mischief [sin] and evidence thereof from people around us: family; work colleagues; spiritual leaders and brethren; law enforcers; etc., God can no longer stand the stench from our wickedness. He wants us change lest as Scripture warns in Nahum 3:5, He ‘lifts our skirts over our face[s]; shows the nations our nakedness and the kingdoms our shame.’ He, however, assures us in Ezekiel 33:11, that He takes no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but in their repentance so they may live. For all our corrupt ways, that is our message!

Patrick Katagata Jr

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