Here are 12 absurd steps to get rich quickly through the Nigerian budget:
STEP 1: Get elected into the National Assembly – you can either go to Senate or House of Representatives. It doesn't really matter which one.
STEP 2: Be a good friend of the Speaker or Senate President, and the respective chairpersons of appropriation committees. That is the legislative committee that vets the budget.
STEP 3: Think up some flimsy projects – say, boreholes to provide water for your poor constituents. It is called constituency project.
STEP 4: Look for a Government agency or Ministry that can smuggle that project into the budget for you and lobby the target Minister or DG. Of course the respective committee chairman in the National Assembly must know.
STEP 5: Set up a company. Or get your spouse, brother, sister, or loyalist to register a company that can execute your chosen project.
STEP 6: Plead with the chairman of the Appropriation Committee to edit the budget and include your project under the agency or ministry that you lobbied. Because budget figures are usually large, this may seem like adding a cup of water to River Niger. If appropriation chairman refuses to play ball, move up and lobby the Speaker or the Senate President.
STEP 7: Say ‘aye’ on the day the budget is put up for debate. (This step is not very critical. You can decide not to show up and it will be bundled with the entire budget and passed)
STEP 8: After the Ministry of Finance has released funds, approach the head of the agency to award the contract for your project to the company in STEP 5. Most heads may require their share upfront. You can’t trust anyone in this business!
STEP 9: The company gets cash deposit from Ministry or Agency. It is withdrawn and handed to you. You can share with anyone that helped the process, but you’ll sure retain the bulk of it.
STEP 10: Sink a borehole in your community with a very tiny fraction of the money and call national TVs to come cover the “commissioning of your constituency projects”.
STEP 11: Plan for next year.
STEP 12: Repeat STEP 1
Who else will not agree that the Nigerian type of democracy, in this sense, is sweet?