Since I commenced my column, there has been quite some flurry of reactions from members of the public, through some social media interactions, especially on Whatsapp, Facebook, Twitter, and through SMS. Some of the postings are hilarious, comical and inane. Yet, some others are very critical, dead serious, educative and entertaining. I have, therefore, decided to take time out of my unenviably crowded schedule to share some of these postings.
The earthquake of Atiku’s decampment from APC
APC may pretend that it does not care a hoot about Atiku’s earthquake and volcanic decampment from its fold. That surely will be the self-denying attitude of the proverbial ostrich. The truth is that APC is quaking and bellyaching about the loss of such a strategic material. Atiku is not just an ordinary politician. He is a generalissimo, effervescent, incandescent, voluminous and a battle-tested former Vice-President of Nigeria. Atiku has an incredibly large cult followers across the length and breadth of Nigeria. Very gregarious, he has the colour, panache and limitless financial war chest such that will give APC a bloody nose and a swollen face. Atiku is urbane and cosmopolitan without losing his provincial roots. APC will sooner than later see the ripples generated by Atiku’s decampment in the weeks ahead. Read the likely reactions of this government and its agents as captured by a brilliant but humourous political analysis:
•EFCC discovers N10 billion arms deal in Atiku’s bedroom
•CBN reveals the owner of N25bn in a secret account in one of the commercial banks owned by Atiku
•Osborne House, agents confirm that $43m discovered belongs to Atiku
•Boko Haram suspect reveals how Atiku gave him $20m to deliver to Shekau
•DSS confirms training of Boko Haram terrorists in Atiku’s school
•Atiku fingered in Buhari’s sickness – Tinubu
•Why Atiku spoiled all the roads in South East – Amaechi.
•Army discovered how Atiku is funding Niger Delta militants – Lai Mohammad.
•Atiku bribed me to poison Buhari – El-Rufai.
•Why Atiku provided private jet for IPOB leader, Nnamdi Kanu – IG
•How Atiku’s action aided RECESSION – Finance minister
•N300bn found inside Atiku’s bedroom – Jersey Sandra
•Atiku never paid TAX in the last 18 years – FIRS
•Pension fund traced to Atiku’s foreign account – Maina
•How Atiku sabotaged Lagos-Kano rail line – Minister
•How Atiku’s seizure of Shiroro Dam brought hardship to Nigerians – Minister of Power
•High cost of living caused by Atiku’s Abuja mansion – FCT minister
•Atiku’s absence caused Nwoye/APC’s failure in Anambra gubernatorial election – INEC scribe
•Atiku ordered the reinstatement of APO 6 DCP Ibrahim Danjuma into Nigeria Police – PSC
•Atiku fingered in the high cost of foodstuff in the country – Agric minister
The unprecedented level of patience shown to Buhari – the economist
Nigerians have never shown such level of patience and tolerance towards any of their past leaders for his record and strange policies as that shown to their current leader, Muhammadu Buhari – a former military dictator now self-confessed democrat who said he came to fight corruption.
Buhari, 75, is being plagued with failures across every single sector in the economy, the like as has never been seen before. Less than a year into office, the economy plummeted into recession, an economy, which had till then grown at an average rate of 7% in previous years (2011-2014). The nation’s currency lost 70% of its value, unemployment rose from 6.5% to 26%, commodity prices tripled across many quarters and the state-regulated premium motor spirit prices were hiked by 67% without practically anybody batting an eye.
There have been stern opposition to his policies, however, and to his very personality as well, notably in the South East and South South regions in the country, as they are called, where he both received less than 5% of the votes cast at the last presidential election and where he has always been sternly unpopular for his history of bigotry against the people, perceived incompetence and dictatorial tendencies. But in many other regions across the country the people have rather resolved to suffer patiently, drawing up excuses for him at will, blaming everyone, including his hundreds of political appointees, anything and anybody but never the man himself.
Buhari’s party, the APC, promised Nigerians unprecedented sweeping changes in government and the eviction of all corrupt individuals.
One possible explanation for this could be his party’s hope narrative in the 2015 general election, where citizens were promised an unprecedented crackdown on corruption and the abolition of all government waste by a man whose financial worth they declared to have been less than N30 million ($150,000 then), a historical low for a former top official in the country and most especially a former leader.
In a country plagued by acute corruption problems and with the unremitted crude oil revenue scandal of 2014 still fresh in the people’s minds, many were eager for an abrupt change, the like as never been seen before. He was seen an Army general, already experienced in government, with a great strength of will, tough to take on the nation’s cabal of hardened criminals. He promised to appoint only technocrats to head the country’s departments and to see out the lingering Boko Haram insurgency from the warfront. For a nation lacking basic amenities such as power supply in spite of its huge energy resources and with the lingering insurgency crises, the choice seemed easy to many – the general with integrity was the man for the country.
Talk was cheap then but now reality has taken its course. His earliest opponents pointed out to his track record and not to his speech, noting that the last time Nigeria fell into dismal failure, currency woes and commodity shortages was when he seized power as a military general in 1983 and stating that the facts of that record contradicted the poems of his image brokers.
Many, however, just wanted “change” as it was then called and so voted the General and sat to wait for the sung promises. But from the onset of his government, the course was as his critics had predefined: Incompetency, bigotry and dictatorial tendencies plaguing the country.
He ignored the newly-born genocide in the middle belt of the country perpetuated by the Fulani herdsmen of his kindred against the Christian communities in Benue, Plateau and later on Kaduna. He breached the Central Bank’s 2007 Act of independence, telling it to suspend forex disbursements to steel importers and other manufacturing sectors in a bid to defend the naira, a disastrous action, which kick-started a spiral of recession.
He took three months to appoint his Chief of Staff, six months to appoint a cabinet and now 23 months and yet counting to appoint heads of agencies and board members he was so eager to fire upon his assumption into office and rose import duties on the most basic of commodities in a bid to raise government revenue.
And as for the corruption fight, the facts on ground do not show any one at all. Apart from a few officials harassed or imprisoned without court order, the country is yet to witness the first victim of the said campaign at the court stands.
Government waste is on the rise, officials publicly caught in graft acts were swiftly excused, the 2016 budget year passed without implementation and, most worrisome, the Central Bank’s foreign reserves were being shared among unknown bureau de change operators at variable rates to the detriment of critical manufacturing, business and banking sectors.
The government continues to praise itself but the people seem to be increasingly tired of the paraded self-righteousness. The President’s recent illness was greeted with cheers by many. Many are just tired of the government. But the remarkable level of patience shown so far has been unprecedented and many a times the general reactions towards acts of constitutional violations was one of calmness or insensitivity.
If the “Change” narrative of the 2015 election and the songs of man of integrity are to account for this, then Nigerians may have just certified themselves on the world map as a nation easy to fool with propaganda. An adult should be judged on his track record not on his tongue.
Is this Buhari’s Nigeria?!!
#North gets 11 judges recommended as Appeal Court Justices, South gets two?
#Recommended 13 Justices for Court of Appeal
1. Hon. Justice P. A. Mahmoud – Benue
2. Hon. Justice F. Ojo – Kwara
3. Hon. Justice I. G. Abundaga -Nasarawa
4. Hon. Justice M. B. Idris – Niger
5. Hon. Justice A. M. Talba – Adamawa
6. Hon. Kadi M. M. Alkali – Adamawa
7. Hon. Justice A. I. Adenyangtso – Taraba
8. Hon. Justice A. S. Umar – Kebbi
9. Hon. Justice O. Z. Senchi – Kebbi
10. Hon. Justice A. M. Lamido – Sokoto
11. Hon. Justice B. B. Aliyu – Zamfara
12. Hon. Justice E. Tobi – Delta
13. Hon. Justice G.O. Kolawole – Osun.
1. Hon. Justice O. Itodo – Benue
2. Hon. Justice M. A. Abdul Gafar – Kwara
3. Hon. Justice D. D. Adeck – Nasarawa
4. Hon. Justice D. G. Mann – Plateau
5. Hon. Justice D. G. Goji – Adamawa
6. Hon. Kadi U. B. Umar – Adamawa
7. Hon. Justice Y. A. Bashir – Taraba
8. Hon. Justice Z. B. Abubakar – Kebbi
9. Hon. Justice I. M. Sani – Kaduna
10. Hon. Justice F. L. Adamu – Kano
11. Hon. Justice I. B. Ahmed – Katsina:
12. Hon. Justice M. Y u ftsha’u – Zamfara
13. Hon. Justice P. O. Affen – Bayelsa
14. Hon. Justice O. A. Ipaye – Osun
South – 2
Nigerian political party clubs transfer window is open!
*APC United signs Obanikoro for an unknown fee. The former Real Eko striker was central to PDP Rovers runners-up position in Lagos Gubernatorial Cup!
**PDP to sign Atiku on free transfer as APC United refuses to renew his contract based on personal terms.
This mercurial Yola Wolves midfield maestro is known for his skills. A veteran of many Presidential Champions League semi-finals, he is known to have nearly won the Presidential Cup before OBJ edged him out in the penalty shootout.
***Rumour has it that Mama Taraba is on her way to PDP Rovers for a record signing, just as former PDP Rovers National Chairman’s wife signed a 4-year deal with APC United with an undisclosed amount. This Mpabbe of Nigerian political parties club has very promising raw talent.
THOUGHT FOR THE WEEK
Lighten up, just enjoy life, smile more, laugh more, and don’t get so worked up about things.
God bless Nigeria.