By Erasmus Ikhide
IT’S exactly three years today since the self-confessed grand patron of the terrorist Fulani herders organization — Muhammadu Buhari took office — as Nigerian president. His presidency at the time was mainly prated on three prongs: security, anti corruption, and jobs created. Nigerians, except a motley of Aso Rock bootlickers, a few law makers and pockets of poster governors know that Buhari’s government is a disaster.
One thing remains constant after listening to President Muhammadu Buhari’s Democracy Day speech this morning: institutionalization of falsehood. Beyond mere gloating and empty sloganeering this government has further shot itself on the foot.
The APC’s electoral promise against corrupt folks, in and outside its government, degrading the Book Haram militias, the government obvious enactment of ethnic cleansing organized by the terrorist Fulani herders and the collapsed primitive economy have all combined to make President Buhari’s administration a dismal failure.
The opening paragraph of the APC manifesto on which President Muhammadu presidency was prosecuted in 2015 stated inter alia: “To initiate action to amend our Constitution with a view to devolving powers, duties and responsibilities to states and local governments in order to entrench true Federalism and the Federal spirit.
To strengthen INEC to reduce/eliminate electoral malpractices. To attract the best and brightest into our politics and public service by aggressive recruitment of private sector people, academics and professionals within Nigeria and in the Diaspora through internships, fellowships, executive appointments and special nomination to contest elective offices.
To prevent abuse of executive, legislative and public offices through greater accountability, transparency and strict enforcement of anti-corruption laws whilst strengthening the EFCC and ICPC. To amend the Constitution to remove immunity from prosecution for elected officers in criminal cases.
To restructure government for a leaner, more efficient and adequately compensated public service. To require full disclosure in all media outlets of all government contracts over N100m prior to award and during implementation at regular intervals. To reform and Strengthen the Justice System for efficient administration and dispensation of justice along with the creation of special courts for accelerated hearing of corruption, drug trafficking, terrorism and similar cases of national importance.
Furthermore, to ensure full implementation of the Freedom of Information Act so that government held data sets can be requested and used by the media and the public at large, and then published on regular basis. Lastly, to seek to amend the Constitution to require local governments to publish their meeting minutes, service performance data and items of spending over N10M.
Above prescription for nation-building would have been a solid foundation upon which a new Nigerian should have emerged vigorously if the APC was prepared for leadership and President Buhari is not carried away by triumphanist epiphany to revenge persons and institutions that delayed his return to power, early enough.
This morning, President Buhari, as usual lied to Nigerians on the improvement of security architecture in the country: “Today, the capacity of the insurgents has been degraded leading to the re-establishment of authority of government and the release of captives including, happily, 106 Chibok and 104 Dapchi girls, and over 16,000 other persons held by the Boko Haram”, he said.
In another breathe, the president inturned: “In order to minimize the impact of the insurgency on Internally Displaced Persons, Government has established secure IDP Camps and has improved the mechanism for the distribution of basic aid, foods and essential commodities using various strategies in collaboration with local and international Organizations”.
The question now is why did Buhari’s administration elect to borrow a whopping sum of $1 billion if truly that Boko Haram insurgents have been degraded as claimed by this government? What’s the achievement of Buhari’s government when 16,000 people held by Boko Haram has been allegedly released from captivity and 60,000 Nigerians have been made destitute in the IDPs camps in the M/Belt? What strategy has Buhari’s government put in place to checkmate the rampaging Fulani herders that have butchered over a 100,000 Nigerians nationwide since he took office?
The APC, PDP or whatever names they’re called cannot provide solutions to Nigerian legions of crisis because electoral democracy merely engendered emotive prescription as much veiling the real issues of nation-building. I have hazarded this thought elsewhere that what Nigerian need at this critical moment is auto-restructuring where Nigerians themselves will be the ultimate drivers of nation-becoming. Until then, we will continue to chase black goat in the dark.
Erasmus A Public Affairs Analyst writes from Lagos
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