Muhammadu Buhari: Five years as President
For a man who looked for the job of the president as if he has something revolutionary to do, five years after he sits on the throne of Aso Rock Villa there isn’t anything revolutionary about the reign of Mr. Buhari. Nothing spectacular. He has been just an ordinary African President and what we know about ordinary African Presidents is disappointment.
Since 2003 Buhari had fought tooth and nail to become President. One would assume such a man had a master plan on how to fix things when he finally won in 2015. After he was sworn in on 29th May, 2015, it suddenly dawn on many Nigerians that the man doesn’t have any plans, there was no blueprint on fixing the Nigeria he fought so hard and wept to lead.
For me it was when he delayed for months to choose his Ministers and ended up choosing the same disappointing and crooked politicians that we all know after six months in office without Ministers. The signs were written on the wall.
Buhari would come out to make excuses after the other, even claiming that he couldn’t perform because it was a democratic elected government and he was better as a dictator. Talking on fighting corruption, which was one of the main thing he said he was coming address, Buhari said and I quote, “During the military regime you are guilty until found innocent, but now you are innocent until found guilty.”
He kept hiding under the propaganda that the previous government destroyed Nigeria so much that he couldn’t perform. He shielded himself with that until his own very supporters got tired of it after three years and asked him to show them what he can do as nothing was practically going on.
Let’s look at the areas Buhari promised to tackle when he took over in 2015. They are SECURITY, CORRUPTION and the ECONOMY. On security he failed. Till date Fulani bandits are still on rampage killing people in his own Katsina State. The criminal gangs have become very powerful
Since Buhari came to power. They are so emboldened they blocked the Kaduna-Abuja Highway for about a year kidnapping people at Will. They have murdered more than 5,000 Nigerians since 2015 in Kaduna, Zamfara, Katsina, Sokoto and environ. They have murdered about the same number under the excuse of fighting over grazing land in Benue, Plateau, Taraba, Adamawa and today these killings are going on in Niger State, extending to villages around the FCT.
Boko Haram have continued to plagued the Nigerian security apparatuses since 2015. They have killed hundreds of military men and women in their quest for Islamic Sharia State. Buhari couldn’t stop anything. It was Chad military who recently came and dealt a deadly blow on Boko Haram, embarrassing the Nigerian military who looked unserious. Quickly General Buratai, to hide his shame, moved to Maiduguri claiming he wouldn’t be coming back until Boko Haram is over. It is not the first time he has done that. Soon he would creep back quickly to Abuja. Nigerians have called for his sack severally, both members of the President’s own party, but Mr. Buhari couldn’t sack him even though most Nigerians simply see General Buratai as a failure.
On CORRUPTION, you all know what’s going on. Buhari started with ignoring the corruption allegations against his SGF, Babachir Lawal. The man was involved in pocketing over N520million, monies he said were for contracts of grass cutting in the North East where people were starving. He abused his office by awarding contracts to companies his people registered. The president defended him until he had no choice. They wanted to sack the NIA Boss when they found that 30 million dollars in some apartment in Lagos and they couldn’t do that without firing Babachir. It was clear that this corruption fight wasn’t going to work. After five years where are we? Your guess is as good as mine. The EFCC has just been going round and round around without really tackling the problem of corruption. We saw Buhari defending Governor Ganduje during the campaign. A man caught on camera pocketing dollar bribe from contractors. Not much is being done at fighting corruption. We all know that. I just saw a report where NDDC MD said his predecessors awarded over 500 fake contracts. Why has the EFCC not quickly gone to clamp on them?
BUHARI made a lot of noise on diversifying the economy. I was shocked when I found out our foreign exchange is still about 88 to 90% dependence on oil. Where is the diversification of the economy? Nigerians have never been this poor. Billions of loans have been collected like no other time in the history of Nigeria but what on ground? In fact this government is still going for loan. There is simply no idea on how to govern a country than the usual we have known with this nation.
Five years has gone and most Nigerians have lost hope in Buhari. They are simply waiting for time to pass fast so that he can leave Aso Rock for some new guy. That’s the reality facing Nigeria today.
George Onmonya Daniel is the editor-in-charge of NewIssues Magazine