Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador once opined, “to confront criminals, we need to finish with corruption. If we don’t do this, there is no hope.” On this note, we shall continue our discourse on the above topic, continuing with the HERDSMENGATE.
STILL ON HERDSMENGATE
This was one of his key electoral promises to lead from the front as a military General. Nigerians believed him. They are still waiting for that to happen. The security and welfare of the people being the primary purpose of government (section 14 (2) of 1999 Constitution), he has a duty under sections 217 and 218 of the same Constitution makes him the C-in-C of the Nigerian Police Force. Under these sections, the President can deploy the armed forces to suppress internal insurrection and external aggression, with a view to maintaining the dignity, cohesiveness and territorial integrity of Nigeria. This doesn’t seem to be happening.
From Riyom, BarkinLadi and Jos in Plateau State, to Demsa, Suwa and Burukulu in Adamawa State, Nigeria is a nightmarish theatre of crimsy blood. From Ntule, Donga, Takum to Shaakaa in Taraba State; from Nimbo in Enugu state, to Ekpoma, Igiode, Ugboha and Orhiomnwon in Edo State, blood-letting reigns supreme. From Agatu and Agaasha in Benue State, to Sokoto (over 39 just slaughtered in cold blood); up to Zamfara, Borno, Kaduna, Nassarawa, Delta, Imo, Anambra, etc, no state appears safe from these marauders. Then, the president suddenly said it’s politicians behind the killings. Why not fish them out? Perhaps, the president does not know that helpless Nigerians in the asphyxiating trauma of daily killings do not believe him.
As we were reeling under these conflicting excuses, Mr President told a bewildered nation that he has done his best in terms of security and that Nigerians should resort to praying! Good gracious!! But, the murderers are known. They own up. They thump their chests. They boast about it. No security agents arrest them. They are above the law, projected, serenaded, cocooned in the comfort of governmental protection. Those like General T.Y. Danjuma and Apostle Suleiman, who call for self-preservation is the first law of nature. Let it be known that the right to self defence is section 33 (2) of the Constitution, section 59 and 65 of the Penal Code and sections 32 (3) and 286 of the Criminal Code that are operational in the North and sections 32 (3) and 286 that operate in the southern part of Nigeria.
Then, the government talked about cattle colonies. It was roundly rejected. Then it brought grazing routes. We were told that the murders were occasioned by blockage of grazing routes. Then, we were informed that it was because of anti-grazing laws passed by some states. This did not add up. Then, the government told us to prepare for ranching. Fine. But, the catch here is that the government will fund it and states must provide land for it. In a federal set up?
What is the business of government in private business? The last time I checked, ranching is personal business. Like piggery, pottery, rabbitry, snail breeding, trading, cocoa, rubber, groundnut and palm produce farming. Will the government also produce special lands for Nigerians involved in these ventures and pay for them? What is going on with Nigeria, this otherwise beautiful country? Why are some being erected as lords of the manor and others as servile hoi polloi?
What about the “NAIRAGATE”, where PMB and his aids had promised to make the exchange rate N45 to one dollar? Today, the government is celebrating taking the naira from N185 –N195 to the dollar that it met it, to the present N460 – 365 per dollar. The naira has been so abused that it dances like a yoyo, nay, like the Esan Egbabonalimi acrobat. It is freely traded for scarce dollars at all airports on Nigeria.
Meanwhile, like Emir Sanusi once noted, some Nigerians are simply round tripping it, making hundreds of millions on a daily basis, while sitting in their gardens. In nearby Ghana here, it is less than 6 cedis to the dollar! Where, how, when, why, did we get it wrong? Baba God, are you hearing, hearing, hearing, my cries, Nigerians’ cries? The people are suffering, gnashing their teeth. Prices have gone beyond the reach of the average Nigerian. Corruption now struts about imperiously, on its hands, head, limbs, even buttocks, like a proud peacock.
Kingdom news of November 18, 2017, published the following from a “concerned citizen”. I cannot do better research than this. Read on.
“Below are forty-one promises contained in the APC Manifesto as published by the party prior to the Presidential election.
The promises below are extracted from the two official documents released by APC as their Manifesto titled ‘Securing Nigeria’s Future’ and ‘Roadmap to a New Nigeria’, all published by the APC and signed by the then Presidential aspirant, now President Muhammadu Buhari. Please note that some of the promises that do not require funds to be implemented are even yet to even be initiated.
SECURING NIGERIA’S FUTURE
“Initiate action to amend the Nigerian Constitution with a view to devolving powers, duties, and responsibilities to states in order to entrench true Federalism and the Federal spirit. (This simply means that the APC actually promised to restructure Nigeria and entrench true federalism if voted into power). Page 6; amend the Constitution to remove immunity from prosecution for elected officers in criminal cases. Page 6; require full disclosure in media outlets, of all government contracts over N100m prior to award and during implementation at regular intervals. Page 6; amend the Constitution to require Local Governments to publish their meeting minutes, service performance data, and items of spending over N10m. Page 6; consult and amend the Constitution to enable States and Local Governments to create city, Local Government and State Policing systems. Page 7; bring permanent peace and solutions to the insurgency issues in the North-East; the Niger Delta; and other conflict-prone states and areas such as Plateau, Benue, Bauchi, Borno, Abia, Taraba, Yobe, and Kaduna. Page 8; initiate policies to ensure that Nigerians are free to live and work in any part of the country by removing state of origin, tribe, ethnic and religious affiliations from documentation requirements in our identification of citizens and replace these with the State of Residence and fashion out the appropriate minimal qualification for obtaining such a state of residency, nation-wide. Page 8; make our economy one of the fastest growing emerging economies in the world with a real GDP growth averaging at least 10-12% annually. Page 9; 5 million new jobs by 2019. Page 9; put in place a N300bn Regional Growth Fund with an average of N50bn in each geopolitical region… to encourage private sector enterprise and to support places currently reliant on only on the public sector, to migrate to a private sector reality. Page 10; amend the Constitution and the Land Use Act. Page 10; create an additional middle class of at least 4 million new homeowners by 2019. Page 10; create a Social Welfare Program of at least Five Thousand Naira (N5000) that will cater for the 25 million poorest and most vulnerable citizens upon the demonstration of children’s enrolment in school and evidence of immunisation to help promote family stability. Page 10; provide allowances to the discharged but unemployed Youth Corps members for Twelve (12) months while in the skills and entrepreneurial development programmes. Page 10; …” To be concluded next week.
THOUGHT FOR THE WEEK
“Whoever is careless with the truth in small matters cannot be trusted with important matters.” (Albert Einstein).
Nigerians, please continue to engage me in the national conversation, whilst awaiting explosive topic of Sunday Sermon on the Mount of the Nigerian Project by Chief Mike Ozekhome, SAN, OFR, FCIArb., Ph.D, LL.D.
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