The Americans have been treating Donald Trump's billions like a curse, a headache. Where will he put his wealth? How will he avoid this and that conflict? How will he do this? How will he do that? It's almost like his wealth is a liability for their democracy, their Presidency.

They have evolved a democracy in which government is not an advisable destination if you seek wealth. That is why the White House has such a high turnover of staff. Once they enter, they discover that they are bound to their salaries by all kinds of rules and ethical imperatives. They cannot make money. They cannot build personal wealth.

They hold a rapid dialogue with their feet and go back to the corporate world to make big money - time spent in the White House then increases their earning power.

Ari Fleischer, Dave Axelrod, etc, etc. The list is long. They get to the White House and discover that the place is not compatible with serious money, they pick race.

About ten thousand kilometres away, in Abuja, it is the opposite. You go to the Villa to build great wealth. You invite pastors, marabouts, and babalawos to help secure your wealth while you build it from scratch in full public glare in the Villa. You send witches to weaken the balls of your competitors so that their wives and concubines will become dildo-dependent. If their wives are grumbling about having to use dildos, how will they enjoy the peace of mind to disturb your wealth?

And if you enter the Villa a pauper and do not exit a billionaire, we advise your family and your kinsmen to go and wash your head. Some will say that you did not carry the head of wealth into the world and that is why you could have gone to the Villa and exited the way you entered. Some will say that the possibility of anybody in your lineage and family ever "making it" again is a function of "boya". (Boya ni molebi ati irandiran won le la mo).

Then they will conclude: Epe ko, won o le la mo. No be curse, dem family no fit make am.

Obasanjo entered the Villa in 1999 with about N5000 in his account and exited 8 years later as one of Africa's most formidable billionaires. Had he exited without stealing everything in sight and building great wealth - part of which included looting our electricity funds to ensure that we have remained in darkness till today; had he exited without becoming a billionaire, his hometown, his ethnic nationality, would have become the subject of national snide remarks and stereotypes.

These Owu people sef. See as their son comot for Villa naked.

Na so we see am o. I hear say dem wicked well well for Ogun state o. How can their son have been President for 8 years and left without money?

From Ibadan to Ilesha via Ogbomoso, you will hear that only Ogun state is like that o. They are different. Won ti buru ju. They "did their son" so that he could not make money.

This national psychology is partly responsible for why government house is a do-or-die destination for building personal wealth and fortune in Nigeria. This is why access to government house involves witches, guns, machetes, and dildos.

You need to work on your attitude. You need to stop expecting government house to be a factory for manufacturing overnight billionaires. This is the attitude which predisposes you to justifying and rationalizing corruption.

And this is why you, ordinary Nigerian, are a valid alibi for the thief in government: if he comes out of government a pauper, you will blame him, you will say that he is cursed. He knows this. You shape and condition his psychology. He is already a thief. He already has corrupt genes. But you activate it because there is no way he can come out of government house to face your contempt and stereotyping.

Since Nigeria was created, you will say to him, people have been going to government to make money, why is your own different? Are you cursed? Who did you offend in your village? Then you will hiss, spit, and say shior to him for not having stolen from you. So he steals to prevent your contempt.

Genuine democracies are incompatible with building personal wealth. That is why the White House does not know what to do with about Donald Trump's billions. It's a unique situation.

Pius Adesanmi

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