Buhari: Chasing rats when Nigeria is on fire

Valentine Amanze

‘In a society that values life, no president will abandon the corpses of his bodyguards and jet out to Liberia for celebration of the country’s independence’

By Valentine Amanze


In 2011, after Nigeria’s general election, theIndependent  National Electoral Commission (INEC) declared Dr Goodluck Jonathan winner on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

The declaration did not go down well with the Muhammadu Buhari-led Congress for Progressive Change (CPC), one of the numerous  opposition  parties in 2011.

I recall watching General Muhammadu Buhari weeping publicly, lamenting his loss on the Nigerian Television Authority (NTA) 9pm network news.

It was a sad moment for me; watching a retired military general in tears, not for losing a battalion of soldiers in a battlefield; but his inability to win election after several attempts. Then, I said to myself: “This could be the best president Nigeria never had.”

As destiny would have it, Buhari bounced back in 2015 to win the coverted trophy – the presidency.

On the mantra to fight corruption and end insecurity, he aroused the feeling of many Nigerians, including the international community, who called him, “The messiah we are waiting for.”

Seven and a half years after, the country is worse off. Corruption and insecurity have hit the roof; even on the corridors of power without serious challenge.

Those, who called President Goodluck Jonathan then a weak leader must now apologise to him with the current state of the nation.

Not that the president is not working; he is not getting his priorites right in the midst of sycophants and political jobbers cum aides, who do not remind him of his promises to Nigerians, who loved him.

He must shun the sycophants and aides, who did not even inform him that the terrorists threatened to kidnap him and the Kaduna State Governor, Nasir el-Rufai, until the governor briefed him. It is as bad as that.

Nigerians, including me, are not happy with the rising insecurity in the once peaceful nation. Farmers can nolonger go to farms, the roads are bad and unsafe, while inflation has risen to an unimaginable level in the history of Nigeria, an oil producing nation.

There is no sector of the economy one could pinpoint now that is doing well.

Even with the current rise in oil price caused by Russian invasion of Ukraine, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) under Buhari regime still continues to devalue the national currency, Naira, N700 to a dollar, yet the president keeps mute. Remember his promise of one dollar to one naira; a story for another day.

What of the plight of the nation’s gallant soldiers, who had been

reduced to “Boys Scout” by the rag-tag terrorists? It is nolonger news that they are poorly funded and ill-equiped to fight insecurity. A poorly motivated security officer is a danger to the society.

I recall, when the Information Minister, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, gave us a false hope that the terrorists had been technically defeated. Less than four years after the assurance, Abuja, the capital on Nigeria, is under the mercy of the same terrorists that were “technically defeated.” Abuja is nolonger save. Some lawmakers have relocated to their constituencies, while schools had been forced to close by insecurity.

Members of the Presidential Guard are not left out. In fact, they lost some of their brilliant soldiers to the emboldend terrorists, who had earlier freed their members from the Kuje Prison.

In the South-East, the Fulani herdsmen /terrorists and the state-owned security outfit, Ebubeagu, have made it a war zone – kidnapping and killing innocent citizens.

The story is the same all over the country, with the soldeiers and police complaining of inadequate funding and sabourtage.

In the midst of all these, our president, Muhammedu Buhari, is still empowering his “relations” in the Niger Republic, who were forced out of Nigeria by the colonial masters.

I don’t understand the reason for the Buhari’s donation of 10 Toyota Landcruser SUVs, worth N1.14 billion, to the Niger Rebublic, when Nigerian Police and soldiers are fighting criminals with poorly maintained vans.

Recall that the current government had borrowed money from China to build a railway linking the two countries, while poor funding of infrastructure persists in Nigeria.

Our undergraduates, the leaders of tomorrow, have been at home since February 2022, while the Buhari-led government continues to ignore their lecturers’ demend for improved welfare and funding of the nation’s umiversities.

It is also saddening that our president had earlier dolled out $1 millions to Afghanistan Taliban administration. Add the amount to the N100 million paid by each of the APC presidential aspirants, and N40 million paid by their PDP counterparts, it would have gone a long way to solving the ASUU crisis.

As the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) strike lingers, it is laughable that some ex-ministers of a regime that claims to be fighting corruption also bought the N100 million non-refundable president election form. How much was their salary to save such an amount of money? They also allegedly bribed

the delegates during their party’s convention with millions of dollars, yet the president kept mute.

In a society that values life, no president will abandon the corpses of his bodyguards and jet out to Liberia for celebration of the country’s independence.

Why is it very difficult for the president to address the nation on the rising insecurity and continued closure of universities?

Already, governors are planning to arm their subjects to defend themselves in a nation with a strong military history. What will then be the work of the soldiers, police, air force, navy and other para-military groups?

In as much as the federal lawmakers’ call for the president to be impeached is ongoing, it is coming too late unless they promise Nigerians that Buhari would be made to account for all the lives lost and money stolen during his tenure.

The lawmakers must not be spared for approving “anything” sent to them from the presidency.

Nigeria needs urgent international attention now before it is too late. All is not well with a country of more than 200 million people. A stitch in time saves nine.



August 5, 2022


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