Six years, single term tenure: Jonathan deserves commendation not condemnation, says Niboro
The immediate past Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Mr. Ima Niboro, has said President Jonathan deserves commendation and not condemnation over his proposed constitutional amendment bill to allow for the nation's No. 1 citizen as well as state governors to serve a single term of six years in office.
In a chat with newsmen today, Niboro said the proposal is aimed at reducing the red-hot friction that is consistently generated every four years as incumbents try to return to office and encounter stout resistance from their opponents.
The single, six-year tenure proposal, he said, will guarantee that once the president or governor is elected, he stays focused on getting the job done rather than from the word go trying to create political appeasement in anticipation of the next election.
According to him, one of the greatest problems Nigeria is confronted with today is the issue of orderly succession devoid of friction.
"We find a situation where the transition from one government to the other is generally acrimonious, bitter and sometimes even deadly. Many times the emergence of killer-groups have been linked to succession politics. The purpose of President Jonathan's proposal therefore is to reduce the tension usually generated in the polity as a result of the politics of self succession."
Continuing, he said that the do or die nature of Nigeria's succession politics will be greatly mitigated if incumbents do not seek re-election.
He also explained that usually when a governor or president assumes office, the initial years of settling down are usually spent to pacify crucial political interests "such that by the time he settles down to work and do the real business of governance, its already the third year when every decision, contract award, and appointment he makes appear to be tailored towards re-election," Niboro noted.
He said if these considerations are put in proper perspective, the proposal is apt and will go a long way in dousing the tension usually associated with the nation's transition periods.
He added that the President's sincere motive for the proposed bill is to ensure that governance proceeds without the usual hindrances of politics of succession.
On insinuations in some quarters that the proposal may be a tenure elongation plot, Niboro said, "President Jonathan is a trustworthy leader, a man whose word is his bond. He has never lied to Nigerians, and as such, we should trust that he means what he says, and means well for the country."