FEATURE ARTICLE

Thursday, July 5, 2018
[email protected]
Dublin, Ireland
BUHARI'S FAILED POLITICAL ODYSSEY

"It's time to care; it's time to take responsibility; it's time to lead; it's time for a change; it's time to be true to our greatest self; it's time to stop blaming others." --Steve Maraboli

"Be with a leader when he is right, stay with him when he is still right, but, leave him when he is wrong." --Abraham Lincoln

resident Mohammadu Buhari was then categorised as few remaining extinct leaders of his generation that will rescue Nigeria from the jaw of an impending doom. Unfortunately, he got himself emasculated, which dimmed and dented his immaculate and enviable track record.

The beginning of Buhari's Presidency in May 2015 was seen as a sigh of relief to all lovers of the democracy across the nation despite the anomalies which mauled the Presidential election. What the entire nation needed at that moment, was a change from the then President Jonathan's chauvinistic style of corrupted leadership.

In persona, Jonathan ascension to power and his parvenu was seen as providence starting from the time he was a Commissioner in Bayelsa State till when he became Deputy Governor and later the President. He was said to be among few Nigerian leaders with sound academic credential and also the only president to emerge from the minority group since after independence.

The era of Jonathan witnessed insidious and pernicious economic future which was saddled with corruption. His government was drenched with profligate spending as a result of greedy, callous men and women which formed his cabinet. His ludicrous political weakness gave Buhari a direct ticket to Aso Rock seat of power without much struggle.

Buhari's Presidency was a calculated and well-orchestrated plan by some political power brokers to put him into power after many attempts he tried to find his way to the Aso Rock failed. He believed that his moral ethics will give him an automatic ticket to Presidency but then reverse was the case. As he realised, that sincerity, honesty and probity weren't enough to make him a President rather it's only cash and connection that speaks in the present day Nigeria politics. Buhari joining the APC party was a wrong choice. He was used as a milch cow by some APC members just to fulfil their political ambition in his administration.

The formation of APC Party was the beginning of another sorrow for the country after 16 years of obnoxious, brutal and corrupt leadership of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). The same old recycled politicians who raped and strangled the economy were the same sect of people who formed the APC Party thus refused to let go so as not to allow fresh hands run the affairs of the country instead, they become obtrude.

Buhari second coming into power was ecstatic by his followers who strongly believed in his moral ethics but sadly, the euphoria faded away in a transient. His onerous task to run the country effectively was characterised in his relationship with some corrupted politicians in the likes of Rotimi Chibuike Amaechi, Bola Ahmed Tinubu (a.k.a) Jagaban, Lie Mohammed, Audu Ogbe, Chief John Odigie Oyegun and host of others which perhaps will cause him a perpetual political setback.

Buhari finds himself in infested water due to the breed of politicians he got himself involved with. These cabals with much influence in the nation's politics shouldn't have been around the President or closer to Aso Rock political establishment if Buhari wanted to succeed in his political odyssey. Many schools of thought argued that without these political juggernauts such as Tinubu and Amechi, Buhari wouldn't have ascended to Aso Rock seat of Power. They are the godfathers of Nigeria political establishment. These political czars believed that they made him and perhaps he should be accountable to them. And another school of thought refuted such argument and opined that Buhari could have done well without these individuals if he wanted to but, because he was so ambitious for re-election, unfortunately, this might turn to be his worst political miscalculation.

Right from the advent of Buhari's presidency, there was this mixed feeling about his administration incompetence. It could be recalled that it took his government some months to form an administrative cabinet. This lacklustre perhaps was conclusive evidence that his leadership is taken the country to nowhere.

The lopsided appointments of northerners in his cabinet key positions show an ethnic dichotomy he created in his government. The Premium Times of August 28, 2015, reported that only 25 per cent of the President's appointments were all from the South while an overwhelming 75 per cent was the North. Also, the paper states that North West geopolitical zone has the largest share of 43 per cent, while the South East has no appointee. Many viewed Buhari as the most provincial and divisive leader the country ever had.

Although this did not come as a surprise, unfortunately, since the country's post independence no successive administration both in the period of military adventurism and the civilian government has ever exhibited patriotism and quality leadership instead, what the country witnessed was ethnic tension, communal rivalry and bloodbath. A true leader is impartial and upright at all times not minding on whose cow is gored. A true leader is been tested during the time of national crisis which President Buhari has failed to exhibit.

The heinous and the brutal killings by the Fulani herdsmen in various part of the country have scored his government low. Buhari being a Fulani extract should have been more pragmatic in handling the crisis instead, he allowed apron string of ethnic influence and religious sanctity to possess him. Such leadership misconducts suppose not to have cut across the fabric of our political threshold. Dr Martin Luther King Jr. postulates that "The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy."

The recent mass killing of 120 people in Plateau State and that of 19 persons in Benue State which include 2 Reverend Fathers who were holding morning mass in Mbalom village at St. Ignatius Quasi Parish Ukpor -Mbalom has demonstrated incoherent and lack of leadership by the current government to secure lives and properties. It's obvious that the world sees Nigeria presently, as a country that is in religious war but it will be hard for the government admit. According to THIS DAY newspaper of 1st of July 2018 captioned "Nigeria has recorded nearly 20,000 deaths under Buhari, says US body." The United States Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) says it has documented at least 19,890 deaths in Nigeria since June 2015, just after President Muhammadu Buhari assumed office on May 29, 2015. This is quite a staggering number which the government has failed to disclose to the public.

President Buhari was much vocal on the killing of Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar.

On Tuesday, September 19, 2017, the President addressed the 72nd session of the United Nation he condemned the ongoing ethnic cleansing of Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar. He said, "The international community cannot remain silent and not condemn the horrendous suffering caused by what, from all indications is a state-backed programme of brutal depopulation of the Rohingya inhabited areas in Myanmar on the bases of ethnicity and religion."We fully endorse the call by the Secretary-General of the United Nation on the Government of Myanmar to order a halt to the

ongoing ethnic cleansing and ensure the safe return of the displaced Rohingya to their homes in safety and dignity."

This was a fine speech and appeal made by the President of a country whose house is on fire, a President whose own country, is witnessing same, ethnic cleansing like that of Rohingya. But Buhari kept blind eyes while hundreds of Nigerians are been slaughtered daily. This is a political hypocrisy of the highest order.

The mass killing of Christians and Muslims by Boko Haram and the herdsmen are beyond proportion if such killings continue by the next few years Nigeria will depopulate. At moment, the country is passing through one of her most difficult period in history coupled with a moribund economy which government supposed to find a solution; instead what they care about is 2019 general election.

In Nigeria, it is the mindset of people that even in the midst, of melee people will pretend to put up smiling faces. But the narrative is that the country is no longer safe for anyone again.

These days people are fearful to speak out especially, the corrupt politicians so as not be picked up by Economic and Financial Crime Commission (EFCC) for probing. They've been threatened and intimidated each time they try to voice out against Buhari's policies. At least, that serves them right because according to Igbo proverb "he who fetched infested firewood with ants invited lizard for a feast."

The current government has lost its credibility and trust even in Buhari's stronghold of Northern zone many no longer believe him because of his failed policies.

President Buhari's ambition for re-election precise will not be easy due to the excess baggage he has gotten himself into. At the moment, the insecurity situation in the country is quite alarming, youth unemployment, the weakness of Naira, presenting the Nigerian youths to the world as lazy, ethnic tension and polarisation. All these will play out during the next general election.

Sadly, the opposition party, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has no foothold in the Nigeria political setting at the moment due to weakness and lack of credibility to challenge the current government. Because most of the aspirants are dirty vessels and unfit to run for any political office of land as a result of their past corruption records.

Nigeria should define its mission objective as an indivisible entity or the rest will be history. The killing of innocent civilians irrespective of any tribe be it Hausa, Yoruba, Igbo or the ethnic minorities has no moral or religious justification anywhere in the world. The paramount objective of any government is to secure lives and properties and not to abandon its citizens. Nigeria cannot continue with the journey of retrogression rather they should emulate the civilized societies on the path they've journeyed which brought them to success and progress. No country can solve Nigeria's problems except Nigerians. President Buhari should remember his mantra of 2015 inaugural speech "I belong to everybody but I belong to nobody." Every Nigerian should be treated equally. God bless Nigeria.


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