Give Jega the 72 billion Naira!

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If Professor Attahiru Jega, the Chairman of INEC says he needs 72 billion naira to prepare for the new voters register in preparation for the 2011 general elections, please release the money to him to do this very important job which we all need to salvage Nigeria . This is because I am persuaded that the biggest problem facing this nation is our inability to search and fish out leaders with strategic intelligence at the Federal, State and Local Government levels to rebuild and transform Nigeria . I remain fully convinced also that if you brought all the money in the world and give it to majority of the leaders we have today they may not know what to do with the money because they lack the finesse, the capacity and the vision to get things done. I am totally in agreement with Professor Chinua Achebe that our problem is squarely a failure of leadership. I read this morning that the Deputy Senate President, Senator Ike Ekweremadu have advised INEC to scale down the budget he requested for a new voters register, and if it is true, I may be forced to conclude with due apologies that the Deputy Senate President cannot get it, cannot figure it out and does not understand the enormity of our problems. I am sure the 101 senators have shared something greater than this every year in the past four years. I am sure the near 400 members of the House of Reps would have shared the same every year in the past four years. I know that some of our rudderless and visionless governors would have stolen ten times that amount of money in the past four years. So what is 72 billion naira? If our budget for 2010 is 1.4 trillion naira and Jega needs 72 billion naira, it is just about 5% of the budget. A good President, a good Vice President, high profile Governors, and 36 Deputy Governors and competent 774 Local Government Chairmen are worth this amount of money.

  The truth of the matter is that we need to pay the price, we need to spend the money, and we need to lose something tangible to get what we want. I do not even care if we spend 72 billion now to get the best President for Nigeria in 2011. A good President is worth that kind of money to fish out. But money alone cannot solve all the problems facing INEC.

  Professor Attahiru Jega will succeed if we all help him. It is going to be a collective responsibility . All the well meaning Nigerians must help Jega to succeed. All the Professional doctors, engineers, lawyers, journalists, accountants, architects, pharmacists, builders, economists, all the teachers, workers, the diaspora, must put hands on deck. The police, army, navy, air force, SSS, DIA, NIA, Civil Defense , Red Cross, NBA, Civil Societies, Rights Activists, the press, the internet publishers and warriors must get involved. Let no one be left out. It is a clarion call, a duty to fatherland, a duty to posterity. Anybody who calls himself a man must help this nation to find her feet once again. Anybody who calls herself a woman of virtue must line up now to help create a better Nigeria for our children.

  50 years in the life of a nation is not 50 days. We have danced naked enough in the market square and the cycle of stupidity, the display of political immaturity and arrogance must take the back seat.   Joe Igbokwe Lagos