Tinubu's Certificate Chicago State

I don’t Envy Asiwaju Bola Tinubu

First, let me wish all Nigerians, especially those who are at the lower rungs of the economic ladder, happy survival. After what is without doubt a ruinous eight years reign, the regime of President Muhammadu Buhari has finally come to an end. Thank God. Wasted eight years!

Where do we start from? How do you judge the performance of a man who clearly was aloof to his responsibilities especially as regards securing the nation, which is the primary responsibility of every government?

Today, Monday 29, would afford the nation another fresh start to retool, rejig and reset the state of the government and the nation. What the Buhari government had done in the last eight years was to simply smash to smithereens all the delicate fibres that bind us together as a people. After eight years Nigerians are at daggers-drawn, living in mutual suspicion and in abject poverty. Everything that makes a nation and people hope for a better future were simply smashed.

It is particularly painful that, whereas some of us openly warned against a President Muhammadu Buhari presidency, but many, blinded by tribal and religious bigotry and selfish interests just refused to see beyond their noses. The result: a broken nation and people. We have never known poverty and deprivation like this before. Nigerian lives have never been as worthless as they are now. The nepotism and corruption of the last eight years will never be equaled, at least not in my lifetime.

In eight years of disaster, Buhari elevated nepotism to the highest level. He destroyed the economy and literally opened the nation’s treasury for a reign of free looting and despoliation by his cronies, allies and relations. His so-called fight against corruption was at best for comic relief. His aphorism of belonging to no one and belonging to everyone was a charade as he vigorously sought the comfort of cattle and his kith and kin herders at the detriment of a united and cohesive nation.

There was huge optimism when Muhammadu Buhari was first elected in 2015. He was designated as the messiah the nation desperately needed. As he steps down today he will be leaving Nigeria in more debt, divided along ethnic and religious lines, less secure, poorer than when he came to office in 2015.

His APC campaign prior to 2015 was based on the need to check insecurity, fight corruption and build a more economically prosperous nation. After eight years in the saddle, all the indices today suggest otherwise.

Under Buhari the dollar now exchanges N780 from N190 in 2015. By 2015 Zimbabweans required plastics full of Zimbabwean dollars to buy basic needs; today, even the Zimbabwean dollar is stronger than the naira. Inflation rate is 22.04 percent as Buhari leaves office; unemployment and under-employment increased geometrically under his watch.

You must be a millionaire to feed a family of six with three decent meals a day. The middle class is eliminated. It’s either you are rich or poor.

On security the government continues to point at its perceived success in checking the incursion of Boko Haram terrorists in the North East. However, whatever gains that may have been recorded in the north-east against the Islamist militants have been eroded by the emergence of equally violent groups in other parts of the country under his watch. The killings in the North Central, North West, South East and parts of the South West and South South remain unprecedented.

It must be noted that the Buhari government’s approach to the fight against insecurity, especially in the North Central, is the very same reason the challenge has remained intractable. For instance, rather than go after those behind the killings, the government was more preoccupied with explaining away the evil acts in manners that are not only unconvincing but silly.

While farmers were daily being killed by herders, the federal government continued to describe these one-sided and unprovoked attacks as farmers/herders clashes. This is a lie from the pit of hell. How will a well-balanced person clutching a cutlass or a hoe engage herders with AK 47?

For instance, when he visited Benue after another round of killings in the state, the president was admonishing the indigenes to learn to be good hosts to their killers. The FG rebuked eyewitnesses who identified their attackers as Fulani herders and accused them of ethnic profiling. They also advised the victims to flee from their villages rather than get killed by herdsmen. This is in spite of the fact that the federal government admitted that many of these marauders are not Nigerians.

In the same vein, while the government was ready to come hard on agitators like Sunday Adeyemo (aka Igboho) and Nnamdi Kanu, the same government was giving insurgents and bandits warm receptions and rehabilitation in the north.

On its touted fight against corruption, the government concentrated efforts in pursuing those in the opposition while those close to the presidency and the APC who were caught with their hands in the cookie jar, were at best relieved of their jobs and simply left off the hook to go and enjoy their loot; that is usually after sustained and continued condemnations from the people. For instance, Nigerians woke up one morning to be regaled with the story of a flat on Lagos Island stacked with millions of dollars. What happened to the money or those behind the mystery money is still left for all to conjecture.

So, with this gloomy reality, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, must brace up for the task ahead. The elections are over, the circumstances around the elections, notwithstanding, there will not be any excuse for failure. This is especially so because Tinubu cannot extricate himself completely from the failure that is the Buhari’s regime, because he contributed to his emergence as president.

If Tinubu must succeed, he will do well to identify all the pitfalls of the Buhari’s regime and avoid making similar decisions, especially, Buhari’s abysmal handling of the nation’s diversity. He must identify competent and able hands to deliver the goods. Appointments must not be reduced to partisanship, nepotism, religious and tribal considerations alone.

In fighting insecurity, he must be ready to follow any lead to any suspect who may have any link with bandits or insurgents. Buhari’s government retained a minister whose open link with insurgents was not in doubt. Rather than relieve him of his duties, they kept making up excuses for him.

How Tinubu will achieve this with a Vice President, Kashim Shettima, who has not deemed it fit to explain to the nation his reported link with insurgents, remains to be seen.

It’s only the right choices that Tinubu makes that will spare him criticisms, and he must learn to see critics as partners in progress who want him to succeed rather than as enemies.

Given Tinubu’s antecedents, Nigerians are rest assured that his government will be far better than Buhari’s. If he chooses to follow in the footsteps of Buhari, then he should blame himself and nobody else when criticisms begin to come.


Once again, happy survival to us all.


Northern Nigeria Education

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