By Fejiro Oliver
“Don’t fool yourself, my dear. You’re much worse than a bitch. You’re a saint. Which shows why saints are dangerous and undesirable.”
I have personally refrained from writing anything on President Muhammadu Buhari leadership since he was elected for any media publication except on my Facebook and Twitter timelines in order to give more time for a better assessment, but I will be doing him injustice and greater harm to Nigerians if I stick to my selfish promise of ‘allowing him more time’.
Some do love Buhari more than I do, but very few can boast of writing against former President Goodluck Jonathan, demanding for his ouster from Aso Rock than my modest self. The records are there in print and online media. Like the young folks would say; ‘Google is your friend’. If still in doubt, go to village and argue with your age grades under the village square where your opinion can tower above theirs.
For the love of Nigeria, we all agreed to vote in Buhari to bring the needed change. We forgot about his dictatorial past and focused on his anti corruption stance when he held sway as a military dictator. Funny enough, this was a man we all demonized since 2003, denied him our votes, with the media used against him. Fast forward to 2015, he became the darling bride of the media, and with every arsenal within our reach which included dangerous propaganda, we canonized him as holy and installed him as President.
But a President cannot rule alone, and so cabinet members must be appointed, screened, confirmed and sworn in. The slogan during the campaign was simple; “Change has come” and everyone with tainted records must be pushed far from the corridors of power, irrespective of political affiliation and friendship. To prove a point, holy Buhari vehemently refused to have his minister for five months, the longest in the history of our democracy, but we were not bothered, knowing that he was taking his time to bring on board saints who will complement his ‘holy’ nature.
We waited, fasted and prayed, waiting for the saints that will be sent from heaven. We looked at all the President’s party men to see the saints among them and found none, not even by half and concluded that he was going to bring in technocrats who were only sympathetic to his cause during the electioneering period, and when we peeped into the crystal ball to see; we found saints among the sympathizers and believed that they will be the one to sit among the holy one the villa.
After the wait for the list of saints, Buhari did not truly shock us, as he came back from heaven with a list of men already condemned to hell fire by God, men that even the devil will reject as his candidates. Despite keeping us anxious for the list of the likely ‘cherubim and seraphim’, he brought same recycled politicians that have eaten our yams since the 70s.
Be not deceived, the next four years will not be different from the past sixteen years that the locust ate. The next four years will be a merry go-round for these set of ministers who will pretend to work for few months and as soon as the tension for performance is reduced, they will roll up their agbadas and babariga, and settle down to loot the treasury. I really hope to be proved wrong. This new sheriff that came to town is not truly whom we thought he is after all. This new sheriff is very good at barking but cannot bite. He lives on his past record and must be wishing that this was military era so he can re-enact what he did back then. But again, even he wants to go back to his first sojourn, there is no Tunde Idiagbon to help him perform.
This new sheriff must have realized that the Nigeria of 1980s where saints easily abound is different from the Nigeria of 2015 where it takes guts to search for true men of honor, integrity, who have not stained their hands with public funds.
Since the new sheriff came into power, we have heard more of “we will do”, without anything being done. We are no longer in the era of campaigns when promises are made, but now in the time where those promises are realized. It doesn’t take rocket science for a serious President to kick off a project or see that an action is taken over negative issues. It only take guts, and truth be told, the new sheriff do not possess this guts to take Nigeria from the woods going by his ministerial appointments as well as his personal actions. The ‘body language’ that worked wonders in the power sector when he first came has suddenly gone.
Then, it was assumed that the ‘body language’ instilled fear in the cabals that controlled the power sector, hence they were forced to provide electricity to Nigerians frequently than it was in the past. We were shown blocked bottled water on social media to depict how his presidency has affected the power sector and while we were yet to fully settle down, his body language also affected the petroleum industry as fuel sold for the normal prices with no queue to buy it. It was not as if we bought beyond the approved rate or had serious queue during the Jonathan era, but trust the Buharist fanatics who made news out of it. Now the queues are back and petrol products are sold above the normal price, yet no head has rolled.
The dealers have not only disobeyed the orders telling them not to sell beyond the approved rate, but also arm twisted him into paying them subsidy claims that he once claimed not to exist. After paying them, they poured sand in his eyes by keeping petrol beyond the reach of the common man, and yet the new sheriff has not made anyone a scapegoat. The bombs have not stopped, rather they have increased, with the terrorists finally showing to the world how they make their bombs, and weeks after, the Nigerian military are yet to uncover the bomb factory. This is after moving the command base to Borno State.
One does not expect Buhari to perform wonders for we never elected a magician. We do not expect him to automatically stop the bomb explode and protect Nigerians, for we didn’t elect a superman. But we expected him to bring in onboard men and women who will truly change the country, not some bunch of old known thieves of PDP stock who crossed over just to achieve their political ambitions. We expected him to give to us the saints that made him kept us waiting for weeks, with the hope that we will see new breed of appointees, not some political fellows who will continue from where the accused Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) left us.
The time is ticking and the new sheriff is already failing woefully, denying his campaign promises, while his fanatics justify it with the failure of the PDP. If the Buhari leadership is judged based on the past performance of the PDP, we can begin to tell them to remove the word ‘Change’ from their nomenclature. Change is doing something different from the past, with clear evidences seen.
The new sheriff has already failed the first litmus test of bringing in saints that should have sanitized the system before the true change arrives, but like every yam eater that came before him, with the exception of Late President Musa Yaradua, he has also come to cut his share of the national cake, eat our yams that he never ate well during his first sojourn. We can only but pray that God help us so that he does not finish the yams. Let the Buharists as usual draw the sword as they are known to do, when viewpoints are different from theirs. Nigerians, live with your saints that Buhari has given to you.
These little things matter…
Fejiro Oliver is Editor In Chief of Secrets Reporters News, Investigative Journalist, Media Consultant and Human Rights Activist can be reached on +2348022050733 (SMS ONLY) or email@example.com. Engage him on twitter on @fejirooliver86.