Soon after ex- President Olusegun Obasanjo launched his so called Coalition for Nigeria Movement (CNM), the media gave unfettered opportunity for those in support of Obasanjo to drop tantrums; but some of us said it would be a matter of this for the campaign to fizzle out, and we are right.
Nobody is talking about Obasanjo’s CNM and no elected governor or legislator currently serving has associated himself with the confusion.
No serious technocrat or even retired politician went close to the movement, meaning Obasanjo is a lone ranger and the media has since shifted its focus elsewhere. Buhari is therefore an enigma and those against him should allow him to be, simple.
Obasanjo’s association comprised of some elements whose persona would never leave peacefully under one umbrella. Up till now, the aim and the objectives of CNM have not been made clear to the majority of Nigerians even though, personally, I strongly believed ab initio that it was an amalgam bound to die on arrival. The founder asserted that it is not a political party, therefore it is nonpartisan or bigoted, and it will not be one.
I have no iota of doubt that a person like Obasanjo will not engage himself in aimless project, knowing that we don’t have provision for independent candidate in our constitution, and yet he has not come out to educate us clearly to which direction he is heading. This posture made many Nigerians to be doubtful and disquieted. I personally feel that, this kind of action lies beyond understood boundary. In other words, there is ulterior motive or hidden agenda in the issue. Really one cannot understand the reason behind this effort.
If it is not politics then what is it is it? Is it destruction aims at obstruction of the present government and hence cause its downfall in 2019? If Obasanjo and his cohort feel that this government is drifting or deviating from the set cause, they have every right to come out boldly and voice their opinion, as he, Obasanjo, has been doing by writing series of letters to all the presidents of this country. I opine that there is no need for them to resort to such seemingly surreptitious and clandestine behavior. President Muhammadu Buhari was elected to power by Nigerians; as such they are the only ones who have the right to remove him but not meaningless coalitions. If Obasanjo and his group are not satisfied with the achievements of PMB, majority people of this beloved country are satisfied. This feeling is evidently embodied in the overwhelming and cheerful receptions he was accorded in every state he visited in this country, both in the North and the South.
It is the media of some parts of this country that blemish the president maliciously. However, they cannot diminish the glittering image of Buhari in the eyes of Nigerians. The more his opponents strike, the more his accomplishments come to sight. We have all heard of the money recovered by EFCC from looters during Magu’s budget defence at the House of Representatives. One thing those against Buhari ought to know is this: They cannot contest his incorruptibility and patriotism which were acclaimed by the international community indisputably, and these are the traits lacked by most leaders of our country.
Those who migrate from one party to another desperately chasing power because they are obsessed, should endear themselves to Nigerians by nobleness, patriotism and incorruptibility. Skidding or skipping from one place to another cannot pay. One cannot rule this country by all means but you can only rule by the wish of Allah through the mandate of the people. Pertaining to those who call upon our youth to take over, certainly I am not against the young ones to come on board as leaders and rulers, but my questions are these: Don’t we currently have youths among our National Assembly members and the governors? What have they tangibly done to the country in general and to their state in particular? How many members of the National Assembly have office to entertain complaints of the electorate in their various constituencies? How do they spend their constituency allowances? How many of them drilled even borehole in their areas? How many governors spend their subvention and grants in the service of their state? Ironically, some of them cannot even pay the salaries of their workers.
How many chairmen of local government areas who most of them are youths use their grants in the service of the people? Therefore, drawing the new brigade into power at the apex cannot solve our problems or cure our headache, as long as looting of public fund is the order of the day, and padding in budget is allowed.
I was one time Acting Dean of Students at the University of Maiduguri in 1990s; most cases and complaints I received from students were of embezzlement of their association’s fund. Their leaders used to fraudulently appropriate the union money for their personal use. The monies were usually collected from the member students of the associations as dues and contribution. One day I asked the leaders that, now you are undergraduates. Some of you are even in Part 3, stealing the money of your colleagues which was meant for running the affairs of your union, as such what can you do if you become governors and ministers? As Nigerians, our problem is not in old brigade or new brigade, but about injustice, self-centeredness, corruption and lack of patriotism. This is where Buhari’s ability and capability come in.
He has done what no president has ever done in Africa; that is fighting corruption vehemently and successfully. By so doing, he has established a record in the continent, and this was attested to by African leaders during the January conference in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Our dwindling foreign reserve during the last regime has now gone up significantly. Based on my assessment what Buhari has achieved in the years, Obasanjo did not achieve same during his eight years. Goodluck Jonathan was younger, but what were his achievements? It’s therefore gratifying that most of the members in Jonathan’s coalition are people who are in oblivion, expired and irrelevant. They are now looking for recognition and relevance in the country. I know some of them cannot even deliver their wards in their local government.
Some of these lots are from my state. To my view, they are nothing but bunch of frustrated and disgruntled men. My advice to Nigerians is that this time they should make their choices of candidates to all the positions during the elections based on merit, more especially those that would be elected to go the National Assembly. It is only by electing credible leaders that we can avoid the extreme opportunists who always think the ends justify the means. I also advise religious leaders to stop engaging themselves in politics lopsidedly.
Prof Nguru is the Chief Executive of Nigeria Arabic Village, Ngala, Borno State.