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Nigeria and her 18th Century leadership

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Nigeria and her 18th Century leadership

In 2015, if I was told that Nigeria will degenerate to this level of rot, want, poverty and decay under the All Progressives Congress (APC), I would certainly not believe such narrative. When President Muhammadu Buhari was packaged to Nigerians in 2015 as the messiah that was being awaited, a lot of us bought the market because we wanted something new. Not because we didn’t have an option, but the option was also not an option.

So, Nigerians felt they needed change to alter the ugly narratives that dominated the administration of former President Goodluck Jonathan in the area of insecurity, unemployment and gloomy economy.

They yearned for something new, something that would reinvigorate their energies and create opportunities for them to utilise their God-given talents and potentials. “Change” became the sing-song on the lips of many Nigerians to the extent that they didn’t tarry a while to ask what type of change was being served on the menu list.

Three full years have been concluded, but the story presents an uglier narrative from what the people craved for. Exchange rate has skyrocketed. It serves the interest of the colonial masters better; seeing a weak currency to exploit. But for the deliberate intervention of the Central Bank to open up the Chinese- Yuan currency window, the story would have taken a different tone.

From the first day in office of this administration till date, it’s been a snail-pace approach to governance by a President whose age presents its own setback. There is a limit at which you can push tired and aged bones around, especially ones that don’t enjoy good health. Admittedly, President Buhari told a nation in dire need of 21st century leadership that his age will limit his performance, the only problem is that he prefers Nigeria to remain at the level of his limitation than take an exit door in the interest of Nigeria. He also honestly told Nigerians that his doctors advised him to eat more and sleep more.

That’s a statement of fact from the President and he has been eating more and sleeping more in a country buffeted with a plethora of developmental challenges needing urgent intervention.

The major albatross on the neck of President Buhari is the gross scale of insecurity in the country which has led to ceaseless bloodletting and wanton killings and destruction of property.

Every day presents its own kettle of fish. And rather than take decisive action to mitigate the frequency of these killings, the President says his security chiefs are “racking” their brains to think a way out of the pogrom.

That is what old age does to the body; the soul is willing, but the flesh is weak, and the nation suffers deprivation. Those who have become parasitic have continued to exploit the weaknesses of the president in their numerous indulgences to wreak havoc on the system through dubious patronages. To them, President Buhari remains the “best” thing to have happened to Nigeria.

Since they enjoy unfettered access and patronage from a system that shows signs of weakness, they must continue to ginger him to seek re-election to service their own selfish end. Those who are occupying the front roll in this administration are largely persons who seek protection from prosecution due to corruption charges and illicit acquisition of wealth. The more they shout to the roof top, the better they enjoy protection and the more they receive presidential endorsement of being pro-Buhari. Once the President is aware that they support him to seek re-election, they get clean bills of health from prosecution.

President Buhari is not only tired and needing retirement, he’s the oldest presidential aspirant in the country as at date. Yet you hear the leadership of the APC saying some “tired legs” are the ones fomenting trouble for the president and trying to secure third term through the back door.

How wrong? If anyone has to be sincere and honest, Buhari deservedly needs a rest accompanied with well-packaged holiday to any of the Islands to catch a fresh breath of nature. As a grandpa, he should be in the warm embrace of his children, grandchildren and members of his family exchanging tales by the moonlight, recalling old memories to relax his nerves and energise his psyche.

It will be a good alluring moment for him at this time than be on the firing line of incessant abuses, blames, condemnation and reprimand from Nigerians who are feeling the excruciating pain of bad leadership. We have become a country of mourners and condolences.

President Buhari has grown to become an 18th Century leader with faint understanding of contemporary issues of modern governance. He has localised our governance process to the level of nepotism rather than globalising public discourse and placing Nigeria on the global stage through interactive leadership that stimulates enterprise and opportunity. What is our policy on 21st century education for contending with the ever changing dynamics in development and reforms? What are the policy options in building an economy that will possess the shock-absorbing capacity to cope with storm and stress in the system? What are we doing about building world class infrastructure to provide the conducive environment for businesses to thrive? What’s our housing policy in a modern world with increasing cases of displaced persons who have been rendered homeless by needless killings across Nigeria?

What are the narratives to place Nigeria at the epicentre of new thinking to redirect Africa destiny with robust crossborder relationship for proper integration and cohesion? What has the Buhari-led government done to strengthen our unity in diversity in Nigeria especially in this season of wanton killings and religious dichotomies? All of these should worry any modern government with the right tools to redefine leadership and set it on the part of growth and development.

A government that continuously preaches anti-corruption crusade with telling signs of selective application of the law is not one that is cut for success. It is utterly confounding to note that a federal court of competent jurisdiction would grant an accused bail, then government chief prosecutor will be running his own analysis on the pages of newspapers to deny such bail.

Nothing can be more ludicrous. Needless to mention that when a case is put before a court of competent jurisdiction, all parties to the case are expected to present their arguments based on the issues before the court. It is the duty of the court to give verdict based on the evidences before it, the arguments presented and the supporting evidence having listened to both parties. It is also the responsibility of the court to give judgement on point of law and not point of sentiments.

It is therefore laughable that the Attorney General and Minister of Justice would constitute himself into another court to deny Col. Sambo Dasuki bail even when the appellant has fulfilled all his bail conditions spelt out in the judgement. This is the level that 18th century leadership has brought Nigeria and the Vice President, a law Professor remains helplessly helpless on these infractions.

So as the country moves towards the 2019 electoral compass, the option before Nigerians would be to vote out this government and enthrone a leadership that will usher in a new perspective for appreciating our collective challenges.

We need a man of energy, tact and uncommon zeal to galvanize our opportunities into edible whole for the overall interest of all. We cannot continue this feudalistic leadership that promotes nepotism as opposed to nationalism in our deliberate effort to find solutions to our myriad of problems. Nigerians must unite to show this government the exit door in 2019 because it has failed to deliver on its promise to Nigerians.

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