BUHARI SHOULD GIVE HIS MINISTERS THE SINGAPORE TREATMENT
Nigerians are keen on the pedigree of President Muhammadu Buhari (PMB) ministerial nominees for good reasons. Some used the nominees to express misdirected sentiments, others simply to prevent a déjà vu were ministers in previous governments were corruption.
With President Buhari at the drivers seat, people are indeed confident Nigeria will get to its desired destination in attaining collective developmental aspiration. People are however anxious over what to expect from those who are to help in the steering process.
Maybe they shouldn't worry knowing that PMB anti-corruption wand is for 'everybody and nobody'. Maybe what people should worry about is not limiting the All Progressive Congress (APC) change mantra to the president alone.
Maybe what some people are afraid of is a situation where rotten eggs in the administration would mean sad reversal to status quo ante. Maybe the task ahead is for every Nigerian to accept and imbibe the concept of change.
A patriotic Nigerian may not want to savor an era of leadership disconnect, administrative gaps and systemic rot orchestrated by a few to construct their way to the commonwealth of Nigeria for a feeding frenzy. No Nigerian with common sense wants the financial, moral vestiaries to be soiled anymore.
It is indeed difficult to wish away thought of past impunity especially as some names have already been bandied about over allegation of impunity. It is however instructive to assert that whoever step forward to join the PMB team in holding the bastion of change is already mandated to conform to the concept of change Nigerians seek.
If the incoming ministers are administered the right dosage of the Singapore treatment used in killing corruption in that country, they will live morally healthy to discharge quality service towards a better Nigeria the 2015 change revolution was predicated upon.
Therefore, regardless of who becomes minister, PMB administration must adopt Singapore approach to defeat corruption. Even those penciled as clogs will put their spanners to work for change or quit. The following rules and regulations include:
a) A public officer cannot borrow money from any person who has official dealings with him or her;
b) A public officer's unsecured debts and liabilities cannot at anytime be more than three times his or her monthly salary;
c) A public officer cannot use any official information to further his or her private interest;
d) A public officer is required to declare his or her assets at his or her first appointment and also annually;
e) A public officer cannot engage in trade or business or undertake any part-time employment without approval; and
f) A public officer cannot receive entertainment or present in any form from members of the public.
Once they are made to operate within the confines of the golden rules above, public offices will be more of service, impunity will be curtailed, clamor for political appointments will be minimized and the gorgon of corruption will be put to permanent state of incapacitation.
Nigerians are indeed interesting people. They follow the lead of popular perception, opinion and established reality. They are comfortable with bandwagon contraposition. Any new acceptable concept rule is seen as the best. So it was in the past were corruption was seen as a way of life by government officials and politicians. It is however instructive to intimate the era for such misguided perception is evolving positively.
The change mantra is wielded by all well meaning Nigerians even those whose inner urge for corruption may remain unperturbed. The bandwagon effect has indeed taken over and the thirst to satisfy that desire is insatiable. Soon prebendal leaders will shy away from political offices, soon mercantile technocrats will hide their heads to avoid taking appointments that will reveal their greed.
The process might be slow, undulating and sometime replete with poisonous sentiments, but the vehicle carrying change is moving, picking up speed on daily bases.
Nigerians fledging democracy is evolving positive leadership strides which has indeed cast doubts on recent assertion by Americas presidential hopeful, Donald Trump that Africans are deficient in leadership acumen. Trumps myopic assertion is targeted at subordinating the changing mentality of Africans to fit into his neo-colonization agenda.
Trumps position is however instructive as a wakeup call for Nigerian leaders to advance beyond his contraption. Let the negative perception also illuminate a strong flame of resolve on every Nigerian regardless of cleavage that change is not an exclusive preserve of our leaders alone but must be domiciled in peoples moral make up and psychological capability.
The bandwagon agreement to kill corruption must be sustained, individually imbibed, collectively policed and permanently buried. Corruption is like cancer, it must be killed to avoid a mutation capable of ravaging the flesh and finally sucking out the life out of the system.
The litmus test for the Buhari led administration is just about to start once the ministers are given portfolios. They will soon be plagued by Nigerians for contracts, appointment, employments and handouts. The pressure will be stiff, unrelenting and choking but that might just be the first phase of test on this change era.
The journey might be tough, laced with intrigues, and sentiments at the beginning but once presents traceable development strides and change from an era of systemic rot in the undulating road to success, Nigerians will celebrate the emancipation process from impunity to true democracy.
Once Nigerians can see, feel and touch physical, fiscal, and psychological development, the crave for stipends from public office holders will be subordinated once developmental possibilities starts to work for the common people.
If the era of complaisance, general impunity and gluttonous competition over asset primacy is replaced by a race to outdo on strides towards contributing to fountain of collective developmental agenda of Nigeria, the country would then be properly saddled on the horse of change.
Good leadership inspires good followership. Buhari has started a social, political and economic master plan for Nigeria. He must however serve politicians/appointees the Singapore medication. It is certainly a tool to fast-track the change agenda.
Thankfully the change era is unwavering. It is however instructive that to coast safely from era of impunity, the storm might come bashing hard ready to execute with zeal and patriotism.
Written by Israel A. Ebije