Nigeria is in despair and distress. The nation is sick and like a Covid-19 patient in dire need of oxygen for survival.
Truth be told, the components which constitute the ‘lungs of Nigeria’ have become frail and weak. And except oxygen is quickly administered to them, difficulty is the road to survival.
The question, therefore, becomes which Nigerian leader as at today has the capacity to not only be the oxygen needed but also have the capacity to effectively administer this?
From the North, South, East and West, there is a general consensus that the country is at a precipice and hence desperately yearning for a new order and leadership.
To posit that life has become unbearably difficult, miserable and despairingly lost its huge value in the most recent years is to state the obvious. Indeed, aside the Civil War with its attendant consequences never has the Nigerian state and its people experienced the turmoil and hardship being experienced across the nook and cranny of the country.
The three pillars of security, economy and social welfare upon which the present administration campaigned and came into power has become a mere mockery of the words themselves. While the nation grapples with an all time worsening insecurity as never contemplated before, the economy and social welfare on the other hand is in shambles with no hope on the horizon.
As the dollar continues a skyrocketing trip against the naira in terms of exchange on a daily basis, inflation continually trips on a seeming strangle spree making cost of living drive hunger and crime to never expected levels in our dear country.
More saddening is the level of disunity, distrust and outright resentment that clearly calibrates the despair and agitations across regions of the country. To posit that Nigeria is a nation at a precipice is to, as much as painful, also be generous with the real state of the country. Like a surgery gone badly, the country clearly yearns for quality leadership, one that is genuinely reflective of the spirit of the once ‘giant of Africa’.
Indeed, giving the worsening state of kidnapping, banditry, terrorism, secessionist agitations, hunger and unemployment, it has become necessary that a leadership with vision and capacity to not only to deliver, but understands the complex and diverse nature of the country be given an opportunity to lead the country out of the woods. And this is possible.
We don’t need to look too far for such possibilities. Rwanda, gives a clear cut understanding and image of how a country can be ‘healed’ and made to become the envy of many. Within a few years of emerging from what seemed like an irredeemable situation, Rwanda, under a visionary leadership has become the cynosure of all eyes and the envy of Africans.
Rwanda illustrates how capacity in leadership and governance when blended with vision and national interest can make any country of the world become dynamic regardless of its past challenges.
As the situation in Nigeria looks dire, one Nigerian leader who undeniably has the capacity to turn the tides around and can be trusted by the Nigerian people to lead them in redirecting the ship of state is Atiku Abubakar, the Waziri of Adamawa and former Vice President of Nigeria.
Across the country, the former Vice President cuts the perfect picture of a trustworthy leader. His cosmopolitan nature radiates and reflects in his reach and spread amongst friends, associates and following across the country. From the North, South, East and West, Atiku’s acceptability is premised on a mien that is encompassing, welcoming and long tested.
A leader that can never be faulted on the basis of religion or tribalism, the twin factors that are the underbelly of our politics and governance, his true character, just as it is cast on stone, is one that is presently needed to pull the nation from the brink.
His record of excellent public service coupled with a stint in the private sector in which he distinguished himself building companies delivering profits and much-need jobs is well documented. Known not to play to the gallery, Atiku Abubakar is equipped to lead and heal the nation.
There is no doubt as stated from the beginning that some measure of relief is needed in the ‘lungs of Nigeria’ as in all fairness to the Nigerian people, they have continued to exercise patience and understanding in this tortuous journey, but have perpetually been served the short end of the stick.
However, 2023 gives Nigerians hope. Whether in the streets of Kaura Namoda, those of Obowo, Ojuelegba, Maiduguri, Ogoja, Otukpo, Bukuru, Ilorin, Sapele, Benin, Kano, Ife, Okrika, Karu, Kano or indeed any part of the country, we can collectively change the course of this ship for our sake and the sake of our future generation.
Given Atiku’s track records of public and private service, his reach in friendship and goodwill across the country, it is time we stand united in our collective demand for a change of baton to a tested and trusted leader who will galvanise us to national integration and economic rejuvenation.
We all as citizens have had it rough. But like Michael Jordan, the great basketball legend says, “Obstacles don’t have to stop you. If you run into a wall, don’t turn around and give up. Figure out how to climb it, go through it, or work around it”. It is time we did this collectively with a new dose of oxygen; one Atiku depicts and clearly has the capacity to administer.
– Balogun, a political analyst, writes from Ibadan