Before We Hang Jonathan
Nigerians have argued about president Goodluck Jonathan's performance, some have argued that if not for security issues via-a-vis BOKO HARAM, he would have performed creditably well, some believed that BOKO HARAM is a political tool used by some mischievous politicians, some described BOKO HARAM as an affliction, some reminded me that Jonathan went to dance Skelewu in kano PDP rally after the Nynana bomb blast, some argued that some politicians have promised that the Nation would remain ungovernable if Jonathan remains in power, some went further to say that some people have promised that the dog and baboon would be soaked in blood and that's what is happening now.
Some have also argued that despite all travesty and prevailing odds that GOODLUCK JONATHAN have performed unsatisfactorily, some were not kind with their words, they said president Jonathan is a disaster to the country.
Either way, Jonathan has performed satisfactorily well or not, I owe Nigerians and the readers of this article the truth. We begin to count the things he did, from the innovative Agricultural transformation agenda under the watch of Dr Akinwumi Adesina, it's been said by the present Administration that they have stopped corruption in the distribution of fertilizers to farmers, that small holder farmers now receive fertilizers at subsided prices , the president and Minister of Agriculture, said that they give fertilizers and farm inputs to 14 million farmers every year, that they also have mobile phones given to them for easy communications between them and government officials, they have also talked about the e-wallet system for farmers, empowerment for fish farmers, they have stopped importation of rice and fish and by so doing it would firm up the Naira, create more Jobs, encourage farmers and enhance exportation. I have also read about other
Agricultural transformation going on in various Agricultural value chains, from rice to cassava to palm oil, livestock. The cassava Initiative been encouraged and crusaded by the Federal Government, I think it's no more news that some bread companies now include cassava flour in their bread.
I can talk about some kilometers of road been done by the FG across the six geo political zones of the country, the 14 new Federal Universities that translates to the fact that every state has a Federal University, the Alimajiri school in the North, the Youwin programme that gives deserving entrepreneurs 10m grant each, through a competitive process, the special interventions funds for SMES released by the president. It would be wicked of me to forget the miraculous halt of the killer, mysterious disease, EBOLA.
In all of these, many feel, the Federal Government has not done enough for its citizens, some people are so bitter, some have also argued that Nigeria is been said has the largest re based GDP in Africa but people have asked questions, how does this reflect in the lives of Nigerians, in the lives of the common man, one who searches desperately everyday for bread. Some said poverty still walks naked on the streets in Nigeria but the president once said Nigerians are rich, that they own and maintain private jets, that we only need income redistribution.
By and large, many Nigerians still live in penury, many are jobless, many are also underemployed, many have been contract staffs in companies for ages, promotion, no annual leave, no salary increment, and they have been subjected to servitude. Needless to say, poverty has eaten deep into the fabrics of many Nigerians, they live miserably every day, like a man said, every poor man is sleeping and only
waiting for his death.
These are not Jonathan's creations, it is a scourge that has lived with us for years now.
Please permit me to digress, I read sometimes in a national daily, senator Magnus Abe's interview, he was been asked by the Journalist that people have accused him of following Governor Rotimi Amaechi sheepishly and he replied that is he supposed to follow him like a lion, that those that are following Jonathan are they following like a lion, that what has he done for him and his family that warrants him to follow him. He said nobody cares about you; everyone cares about themselves and families.
In sum, Nigerians demand mass homes for 1st time home owners especially for the low income earners, mass decent jobs, youth and women empowerment, power to thrive the economy, food security that guarantees affordable food for all, incubation centers for training young Nigerians based on their interest especially in the Agricultural value chains and other sectors of the economy, free and qualitative education for all, social equity, politics of inclusion, security, immediate release of the Chbibok girls etc.
We must rise up for our generation because youth unemployment is a source for social explosion and poverty somewhere is threat to affluence elsewhere. This is not about patronage, partisan politics or been an irritating critic, it's about Nigerians basic needs and yearnings, because Nigeria is sitting on a time bomb and on the brink of collapse, now is the time.
Citizen Agbese is a public affairs commentator based in Abuja.
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