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Short Notes On The State Of The Nation

By AYENI SHAMSUDEEN
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Every society is blessed with the ugly, bad, good and beautiful people. Nigeria is not an exemption in this regard. Between 2014 and 2019, the nation has nurtured and unveiled some chameleonic characters in the political terrain whose political views and understanding of national issues continually change without recourse to established laws and personal philosophy. As such, the nation’s political atmosphere has become more sophisticated and complicated with all kinds of unimaginable and unbelievable human behaviour defining and redefining what should be and what should not be in the country. There is an axiom that says:“the only constant thing in life is change”. It is interestingly remarkable to experience how political players (analysts, commentators, followers and leaders) in the country are changing their political positions, speaking with both sides of the mouth, grandstanding and heating up the polity with their partisan support for one party or the other.

Let us remind ourselves that the current regime led by President MuhammaduBuhari came into power on the premise of change. In 2015, President Buhari and his political party (All Progressives Congress) promised to bring positive changes to Nigeria, restore sanity, and give Nigerians a better and sustainable governance system by correcting all the wrongs and misdeeds that characterized the sixteen years rule of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP). Almost four years after, Nigeria is still in dire need of real and positive changes. In the last four years, there has been much furore and divisions among the people of Nigeria over the performance of President Buhari as Grand Commander of Federal Republic of Nigeria. Whichever way one sees President Buhari’s performance, one thing that is unquestionable is that Nigeria is still faced with prodigious socio economic and political challenges.

The nation’s challenges appear to be further worsened by open display of partisanship, ignorance and intolerance among the people. Sensationalism and selfish interest have hampered on our sense of reasoning, objectivity and morality. Those inordinate and inhumane actions that would largely cause hue and cry, generate acerbic criticisms in the past seems to have become permissible now. Thenation no longer enjoys robust and rich political discussions and inspired speeches from the political class inthe country. What we have now are watery speeches that hardly address the major issues bedeviling the nation. Our political campaigns and rallies are full of personal attacks, insults, dancing steps and moves, songs of hatred, hate speeches and innuendoes accompanied by acts of thuggery, violence and disruption of peace and order in the society.

Furthermore, hypocrisy and shenanigans have overtaking corruption in Nigeria in the current political dispensation. The voices of the masses are gone; era of serious activism has disappeared, civil society groups are no longer performing up to expectation in their traditional calls for true federalism, good governance and respect for the rule of law. Paid protestersin support of or against one politician are everywhere. Of the three arms of government, only the executive is presently working without one form of internal or external threats. The judiciary and the legislature are suffering from executive meddlesomeness. Our intellectuals are equally sharply divided along party line. The few individuals that try to keep the tradition of calling bad leaders, bad policies and actions of the government out, irrespective of the political party occupying Aso Rock are currently being erroneously called antagonists and shouted down. It is just very difficult for someone now to explain his or her political neutrality/patriotism for the nation without being tagged as either a member of the ruling party or a supporter of the major opposition party in the country.

We must not forget so quickly that Nigerians did not vote for President Buhari in in 2015 in order for him to continue on the mistakes of PDP. All his actions and inactions are supposed to be far better than what he inherited from PDP led federal government. It would therefore amount to a great disservice to our nation, a great contradiction to APC’s change mantra and waste of the nation’s resources if President Buhari was caught doing what made Nigerians rejected PDP in 2015. What we should be demanding from President Buhari is consolidation on the gains and achievements of PDP led federal governmentand not repeating their past mistakes. This is the only way Nigeria can truly progress to any next level. I therefore call on the National Orientation Agency to come to the rescue of this nation. This agency can do a lot to unite this country, deepen our democracy by putting in the public domains positive communications.

Shamsudeen Ayeni, a socio political commentator, writes from Akute, Ogun State.

He can be reached via: [email protected]