It’s the election season in Nigeria, and a number of parties and their own aspect of human resources, the politicians are in top gear to once again sell their merchandise to what i may call a never suspecting electorate on how they intend to dot the L’s and cross the T’s on the numerous challenges facing us.
As always, one recurring feature in the forthcoming polls will be the fact that a number of incumbents, save for those denied tickets for a second streak in office and those who cannot seek an extra term beyond the stipulated two terms of four years each, as stated in the 1999 Constitution, will be seeking to court the voter for another term in office. The voter should be ready for a new set of theatrics from these politicians; they may this time, in addition to frying akara, eating corn and buying banana, might attempt to breastfeed babies, you never can tell what lies in their bag of tricks.
Another incumbent, who will be seeking to return to office is President Muhammadu Buhari, love him or hate him, Buhari’s place in our nation’s history is indeed settled for the mere fact that he has on two occasions presided over the affairs of this great but wobbling nation. But, before history and historians will have the chance to pass their verdict on him, the electorate, like the American Jury System, will attempt to pass its judgement on Buhari, when they go to the polls next year.
All over the country and outside its shores, a series of mock trials have already begun, with supporters of each presidential interest releasing a flurry of staccato signals to an already bewildered electorate. Emulating their presidential hopefuls, these foot soldiers are shouting themselves hoarse on why their candidate is better than others, yours sincerely is also guilty of this act.
Thus, I intend to conduct my own trial on the pages of newspaper and series of blogs, here, I shall be both the accuser and defender, jury and judge, now do not be alarmed, for it is the benevolent tyranny of my column and if you do not agree with mine, I am sorry, I cannot help you, write yours!
Does President Muhammadu Buhari deserve a second term in office? Has he and his party, the All Progressives Congress, the APC, fulfilled all righteousness to deserve the people’s mandate for another stint of four years?
Has Buhari been able to achieve anything, ‘somethings’ or many things in office, or like the children of perdition have alleged, has he just spent the four years drinking nunu and reading cartoons as well as taking medical checkups abroad only?
Before I strike the rod, while it still seems to be hot, may I draw my reader into a number of facts about the man in the box, being President Buhari, I may be wrongly accused of flattery, but so be it. Buhari is one man whose legend will continue to awe Nigerians; strict, stubborn, prudent and incorruptible are words that can be used to describe the man. He does not possess the flair of a politician nor the avuncular nature, he is blunt to a fault and would not trade his honesty for anything else. Even his traducers agree with this as can be seen from Saraki’s recently leaked telephone conversation. Also, a number of Nigerians very much agree that a number of attacks being received by Buhari can be adduced to those who begrudge his electoral victory in 2015, as well as his style of leadership, thus, the resumed form of wailing, backed with nugatory shrills for almost every issue that has arisen since he, Buhari assumed the presidency. Like the parable of the children in the market place, who called to one another, these set of wailers seek to find a fault in every step of the Buhari administration. They are attack dogs and gate keepers at the same time!
This is not to say that President Buhari is infallible, far from it, he too has made his mistakes, but these mistakes are honest ones when viewed from the prism of how they were made. For example, I still hold the view that President Buhari’s failure to appoint a cabinet, no sooner had he emerged as President contributed a bit to pushing the country into recession, but was such an error the overlying factor for the recession we entered in 2016? No is the music here!
Again, the Fulani herdsmen killings witnessed under his watch was rather unfortunate, and Buhari as president and commander in chief had it as a duty to protect the citizenry, but rather than take him on these lapses, these fuss pots have rather spun a conspiracy theory that because the president is of Fulani stock, then he is aiding and abetting them. Thankfully, the arrest of Tashaku Aliyu has helped confirm that though the herdsmen challenge is real, it was exacerbated by fifth columnists.