The Assistance Buhari/Bakare Needs
As a concerned non-partisan Nigerian, I feel obliged to firstly transmit the CPC Presidential candidate - Gen. Muhammadu Buhari's (rtd) call for financial assistance to enable their campaign organization (Buhari/Bakare) execute all arrangements for successful campaign tours. Our contribution will also assist in providing logistics to execute other arrangements to ensure success at April 2011 Presidential polls. Secondly, as a pro-democracy desperate of ensuring equitable spread of dividends of democracy to Nigerian stake holders, I feel obliged to enlighten the Nigerian voters about Buhari's presidential candidacy and what can be done to assist the journey.
Buhari's Need for Financial Assistance. Why?
As we all know General Buhari of the CPC is not like other parties' Presidential candidates. It is widely believed within and outside Nigeria that Buhari did not amass himself wealth during his public service in all the positions he held. God the Most high has granted Buhari opportunities of trial where he served the nation in high positions without betraying trust. Critical among the high positions he held include the Head of State, Petroleum Minister, State Governor, and Chairman of the Petroleum Trust Fund (PTF). People generally believe that Buhari is the only candidate with least financial advantage among all the other three prominent Presidential candidates of the ACN, ANPP and PDP. Buhari relies on a few friends and relations to finance most of his political activities. He does not have big money bags in his fold. These money bags who mostly enjoy government contracts that contribute handsomely to other other three contestants. These three other contestants namely the current President Jonathan, current Kano State Governor Shekarau, and former EFCC boss Ribadu, in addition to the financial benefits they get from the friends of their governments, they have enjoy tremendous financial support from the government coffers they are controlling directly as persons or indirectly from the governments their parties are controlling. It is only CPC that has no single serving political executive to influence easy access to financial resources. It is against this backdrop that after the re-emergence of Buhari as a presidential candidate I began to hope and pray that Buhari/Bakare campaign organization would appeal to the general public to assist the party organization with financial donations.
Ethics and Strategy of the Donation
Ethically, it is better for political aspirants to solicit for donations from the public than smartly take from the government coffers of which elected office holder is entrusted with. Donations from the public are also ethically better than donations from contractors that usually give out of fear or undue influence. A more recent experience where donations from the general public played an important role was the President Obama campaign in 2008. Obama was popular and therefore enjoyed great deal of donations; Buhari is popular and we expect supporters, though largely pauperized by PDP's 12 years of ruler ship, are expected to donate the meager they have to show their love before the actual voting. What are required here to achieve our desired objective include enlightenment and mobilization of people in our cities and villages to embrace the need for the donation. The duty of enlightenment and mobilization through face to face contact, text messages, sponsorship of advertisement and the use of internet should be the responsibility of all of us. If this is achieved, I believe millions of Nigerian masses will be willing to part with their little money as part of their investment for a better tomorrow with Buhari as our President.
Getting Buhari to Speak out
As part of the responsibilities I take upon myself toward realization of Buhari/Bakare Presidency, despite my huge scholarly challenges, as a means for liberalization of Nigeria from total collapse is to assist by canvassing and mobilizing support for the duo through direct and indirect means available to me. It is in this spirit that I wrote to the CPC through the www.buhari4change.com website my advice for Buhari to personally make an appeal to people though the media to donate to help their campaign machinery. To my gratification and many others that share my line of thought and perhaps made similar actions, a week after posting my comment, I heard Buhari's voice on air through the famous Freedom Radio, Kano making the solicitation.
Having come to this stage, I now feel obliged to use the internet, electronic print media, and text messages to send across to the general public the Buhari's message and urge all and sundry to make their contributions based on their abilities. In this kind of situation any amount (small or large) is instrumental and can make a lot difference. I want to urge all well-meaning Nigerians to contribute/donate and influence relations and friends to do the same. The Buhari/Bakare presidency is a project that Nigerians should not ignore in this moment of our history. A donation to Buhari/Bakare project is a contribution toward saving and rebuilding Nigeria which will be rewarded in double-fold - here and the hereafter.
How the donation can be made
According to Buhari's transmitted announcement on Monday 14 March, 2011 exactly 26 days to the election, the donation can easily be made through the mobile telecommunication facility called 'credit transfer'. He personally gave the following mobile phone numbers for the transfer: 1. MTN: 07037777443 2. GLO: 07055555611 3. AIRTIME: 07088886622 4. ETISALAT: 08097555111
He warned these are the only phone numbers that are genuine and therefore allowed for this transaction. It is important for the general public to be informed of this warning to avoid sending their monies to the wrong place or fraudsters that can take advantage.
Based on the aforementioned development and the earnest need for this assistance all well meaning Nigerians including the foreigners that reside in Nigeria ought to donate for themselves and their family members that depend on them. We have to realize that this is a collective project to save our dear nation from the shackles of the present power that reigned for 12 years amid unprecedented economic fortunes without any meaningful progress other than deepening the country into myriad of economic, political, ethnic, religious and regional crises. The PDP government in particular has locked up the country in a vicious circle that unequivocally heads the country for total decay and disintegration. As concerned Nigerian citizens that do not have any country other than Nigeria we should owe it a duty to use this opportunity in the critical moment of our history to save Nigeria and uphold its unity. We should not fold our arms and allow our dear country to undergo the experience of Libya, Yemen and Bahrain in trying to achieve the popular aspirations of the impoverished Nigerians. As a privileged and enlightened people we have to employ civilized and democratic ways to ensure normalcy is restored to our fatherland.
This appeal goes not only to resident Nigerians or foreigners resident in Nigeria but to the millions of Nigeria in Diaspora. Our people in Diaspora just like my humble self that stay in far Malaysia on study can make their donations through their trusted friends and relations in Nigeria using the available information and communication technology. The struggle for regaining our glory and heritage as a pride nation should be 'all inclusive' devoid of divisive tendencies and temptations that visited our polity after the PDP zoning crises.
Objectively, people from all parts of Nigeria attest to the integrity and capabilities of Muhammadu Buhari and Pastor Tunde Bakare to manage and utilize the abundant natural and human resources that Nigeria was endowed with. The duo of Buhari/Bakare cannot be compared with the duo of Jonathan/Sambo. While Buahri/Bakare candidacy represents honesty, integrity, performance and patriotism, Jonathan/Sambo candidacy clearly represents incompetence, corruption and distrust. The barely one year of President Jonathan in power is enough to show Nigerians what he can do or cannot do when he returns as the next President. The experiences of the last one year of President Jonathan have been that of resurfacing of Niger Delta militancy, recurrent Boko haram killings, kidnappings, bombings, depletion of foreign reserves, and general deterioration of social, political and economic life of Nigerians.
Desperately, Nigeria needs change and the change should be through our votes. Change through our votes will definitely not be through the PDP that failed Nigerians for 12 years. With the caliber of people in PDP any right thinking and well meaning Nigerians cannot trust President Jonathan to deliver or fulfills his campaign promises. In fact, the confidence on Jonathan to fulfill campaign promises is completely absent since he could not fulfill a binding agreement within the PDP itself. President Jonathan political infidelity is largely responsible for the divisive crises that are rocking the PDP today. According to Sonala Olumhense a columnist in Sahara Reporters only two categories of people may be lured to elect Jonathan of the PDP. The first comprises of beneficiaries of the incompetent, corrupt and unpatriotic system that has grounded Nigeria since 1999. The second category comprises of masochists who will vote against the best interest of their own children and their country, this category according Olumhense are fools who can invite for themselves the second hammer from the Jonathan led government. The question now is which category do you fall? I hope you will not allow yourself to fall into the category of 'fools' those that do not benefit anything from 12 wasteful years of PDP but because of their myopia of ethnicity, religion, tribalism and sectionalism are toeing the Jonathan path. It may be interesting to this second category to note that even some beneficiaries of the PDP led governments at different levels that could 'see beyond their noses' have changed minds about Jonathan and have moved to the side of one opposition candidate or the other.
Fellow Nigerians let us come together to support the 'project save Nigeria' being championed by Buhari/Bakare by sending our donation through the stated media, secondly and most significantly let us continue to pray, based on our respective faiths, for continuous protection, guidance and success of Buhari/Bakare struggle for the Nigerian presidency. As men and women of faith resort to prayer should not be under estimated. Surely, the power of prayers can continue to spoil all plots against the people's general and his team and make it possible for him to beat /outplay his fellow contenders. Our contribution in these directions can be a good catalyst for the change that we desire. In addition, our generations yet unborn can benefit from the little efforts we can do now. Long live Nigeria!
Abdu Ja'afaru Bambale
Ph D Candidate @
Universiti Utara Malaysia
06010 Sintok Kedah Darul-Aman