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Diezani Alison-Madueke,

Nigerians Blast Diezani For Saying ‘Yahoo’ Boys Have Become Role Models

Several Nigerians have criticised Diezani Alison-Madueke, a former minister of Petroleum Resources, for saying that online fraudsters, better known as “yahoo boys”, have become role models.

At a virtual conference organised by the umbrella body of Ijaw cultural associations known as the Ijaw Nation Development Group (INDG) on Friday, Diezani said the respect accorded to internet fraudsters is a reflection of the degeneration of societal values in the country.

The event was also attended her former boss, former president Goodluck Jonathan, with the video of the event published on Twitter by Jackson Ude, the publisher of Point Blank News.

The former minister emphasised the importance of mentorship for young people, saying only hard work could guarantee success.

She said:  “The ones that have swag, the Yahoo Yahoo boys as my son would say; these in short, are the role models they are looking at. These are the ones that reinforce negative societal norms and values.

“This is a travesty of an unfolding tragedy for us. Why have I spent time talking about fatherless homes and the impact it has on our children? The truth of the matter is that an irresponsible boy tends to become an irresponsible man and it is therefore a vicious cycle. If you plant yam, you cannot harvest plantain.”

Diezani added that there are no shortcuts to progressing in life for individuals, noting that people must in hard work in their endeavours.

“There are no shortcuts to working your way up the ladder of life. Progressing in life, in work and relationships – marital or otherwise – is always dependent on consistent effort and hard work.

“As we create more responsible young men, we will generate more responsible fathers which will in turn engender a more sustainable society and build a greater nation of successful Ijaw men and women.”

However, Diezani’s comments did not go down well with several Nigerians, who took to the social media and denounced her for what they perceived as hypocrisy.

Many of the commentators lamented that the former minister, who is being investigated by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, for alleged fraud running into billions of dollars, has been living in the United Kingdom since 2015 and refused to return back to the country to face trial.

The ex-minister had relocated to London shortly before former Jonathan handed over to President Muhammadu Buhari in 2015.

The EFCC commenced a process to extradite her but has been unsuccessful to this point.

See the comments on Nigerians reacting to Diezani’s comments on Twitter below:

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