Category: News

WHAT DETERMINES 2019 PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION “ANTI CORRUPTION OR COMPETENCE”?

Barring any unforeseen occurrences the major political actors in the 2019 presidential have emerged.

With the conclusion of the party primaries and the emergence of President Muhammad Buhari of APC and former Vice President Atiku Abubakar of the PDP,.

Both of them of the Fulani stock, one from Jada, Adamawa State and the other from Daura, Katsina State the fight for who occupies the presidential Villa on the May 29th 2019 has began.

The journey would be guided by issues but the leading tophic on the agenda for the debate will eventually narrow down on “competence and anti corruption”.

Prior the 2015 general election President Muhammad Buhari whose pedigree as an in corruptible general earned him blind support of the electorates.

This led to the ouster of the sixteen years of the PDP government in 2015.
His name became synonymous with the 2015 elections. Infact the Buhari tsunami led to the election of many of the un electable in government.

Buhari worn the election on the change mantra and anti corruption.
Three and half years down the lane the corruption fighter Is now dogged with corruption from within.

Atiku the former Vice President under the Obasanjo Administration one of the founding member of the PDP carries the stigma of corruption associated with his party.

This in spite of the fact that neither him or his principal (Obj) have ever been charged to court for corrupt practices. But he has been sentenced in the public court as corrupt because of the successes in his businesses.

The dictum now being popularised in the fight against corruption that “You are guilty until proven innocent” has some serious consequences on the citizens. It has hurt and destroyed many innocent people.

The concept itself is antithesis to the provision of the constitution and legal jurisprudence, which advocates “ You are innocent until proven guilty.

The labelling of corruption may not stick this time around because the Buhari government in last three and half years have not come out clean on the accusations of corrupt practices.

The Buhari apologist may argue that the President is clean, but how true is this assertion?

But even for the sake of argument, let us give it to the President that he is in corruptible.

But how can one explain the corruption going on under the nose of the President.

The NNPC saga, where the President is holding the portfolio of a Minister the Ministry of Petroleum.

The corruption issues associated with the chief of staff to the President.

The detention of the ADC to his wife by Dss for allegedly stealing over two billion naira of her money, which the state is now claiming he was collecting from state governments without her knowledge.

The corruption saga that led to the removal of the former SGF Babachir.

The hob knobbing the government is having with corrupt officials that have milked the treasury of their states dry and ran to the government for succour.

Recently, it took the court to compel the EFCC to investigate the stupendous wealth of one of the senior member of the APC whether this would be obeyed is another story all together. The list is endless.

It is this selective application of the fight against corruption, that is fighting the corruption agencies back.

For me if the law is allowed to take it course most of the people now parading themselves on the streets causing all sorts problems and confusion should have been in the gulag,

On the competence scale its on record the American President, regrettably was quoted to have referred to the Nigerian President as “lifeless”, this goes to show how some of the leaders of the world perceive the president, as some one who lacks capacity.

Atiku, certainly can not be accused of in competence, “lifeless” or some one who lacks capacity, his pedigree in business and as the Vice President is clearly there for everyone to assess.

But he too would face big task of purging himself from the baggage of corruption that characterised the tenure of the government of which he was a senior member.

In this regard, both the candidates have their weaknesses and strength. While Mr. President is seen to be in corruptible the issue of lack of capacity hangs over his head.

Atiku, arguably has the competence and capacity to deliver, but the corruption issues of their government will constitute a dark cloud over his head as well.

The choice in 2019 may be reduced between “competence and anti corruption” depending on which side of the divide you stand.

That is why we are saying, the “labelling of corruption” may not fly the kite this time around. As both parties have enough issues bordering on corruption in their baggage.

The voters may hold the key to where the needle on the Scale would tilt during the election but will their ballot count?

My take on this depends on how those we have entrusted with the conduct of the national elections allow the process to go full circle with out manipulation of the out come. I know we have been promised impartiality but what happened in the Osun election speaks volumes.

The Police and other Security Agencies must be impartial so that the process plays out completely for the good of democracy and the country and let the best be.

MIXED BAG OF FORTUNES

The party primaries have come and gone. It left behind gales of dissatisfaction and wider disunity amongst the losers and the winners.

The process of healing the wounds it created will now begin but that is politics for you.

The question we have to ask ourselves is whether the process has successfully produced the leaders we so desired?

And whether it has met democratic international best practices of selecting political leaders?

To say yes or no depends on which side of the divide you belong.

My take on this, it was clear from the on set we are heading for a disaster. The discordant voices generated by the political parties as to which of the process they would deploy for the selection of their flag bearers was rooted in selfishness and self aggrandisement.

The resolve by some of the parties to use combination of the Direct and In Direct primaries, sent a serious warning signs to those who care to ponder on what the likely out come of the process would be.

The 1999 constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and Electoral Act as amended both allowed the use of Direct and In Direct primary as a process for conducting party primaries.

Paragraph 15, Part 1 of the Third Schedule of the 1999 constitution as amended and the Electoral Act 2010 as amended provides that all the political parties are required to conduct primary elections to distil and submit to INEC their party flag bearers, contesting for elections in to the offices of the President, Members of the National and State Assemblies and the Local Government Councils

In a more civilised society the options provided by the constitution and electoral act, intended to strengthen and deepen the process of democracy would have been good for the polity. But alas in our situation, it created window for un wholesome Practices by the actors.

The lacuna gave rise to what played out during the party primaries.

By law one can say without fear of contradictions that what the parties did were in line with the provisions of the constitution and electoral act.

But can we safely say, the actions of the political actors in the conduct of the exercise a reflection of the intended out come of what the crafters of the Nigerians constitution envisaged?

It is in this light, we shall examine the circus and the sham that characterised the recently concluded party primaries

The term direct and indirect primaries are not new. They have been in use all over the world as a method of narrowing the choices of the candidates to stand for general election on the platform of a political party.

An indirect primary is an election in which voters do not choose between candidates for an office, but elect people who then choose candidate at party convention. It is one of the oldest forms of elections, and is still used today.

The direct primary came about as reform aimed at deepening democracy, it empowers ordinary party members to pick candidates for office, rather than leaving that decision to party insiders.

If both were managed very well, the processes are capable of producing credible results.

What we witnessed in the past few days in some of the cases were nothing but outright mockery to democracy and democratic processes. It was a sham and a national disgrace.

The whole process was typified by Cronyism; the senate un finished leadership struggle; God fatherism; Incumbency factor; Executive influence; Party preferences; Bridge building; Money politics; Corrupt practises; Delegate manipulations and Leadership deficit.

The blind desire by the powerful to install surrogates and lackeys in order cover their thievery, filth and shoddy deals exposes the un belly of the Whole exercise. It robbed most of the states the opportunity of selecting credible candidates.

The un finished politics of leadership in the National Assembly also had significant effect on the out come of the primary election, as both parties ensured that all sitting Senators and Members do not loose their seats. The reason is to ensure they do not turn against the party in the unfinished saga over the leadership of the national assembly.

God fatherism also played a serious factor during the primaries. some top politicians are strategizing for 2023 elections, they were keen in ensuring that they install as many Governors, Senators and Members to use them as lynch pin in 2023.

The Party Executives also criminally soiled their hands by arbitrarily manipulating the delegate lists and in some cases out rightly changing delegates list or even sacking the entire state party executive and replacing them with cronies that are ready to do their biddings.

Money was also widely used to corrupt the process. Vote buying and manipulation of party electoral officials through various inducements were wide spread resulting in many states changing the dates and venue of the primaries to favour their agenda.

Delegate stealing and manipulations in some states deprived other candidates access to delegates.

The venues for primary elections were in some cases moved away from there original locations at dying minutes to government houses, there by depriving some of the contestants access to the process.

Some of the manifest undesirable out comes the process produced are; flawed leadership, since the process used in selecting the future leaders are flawed, muddled with nepotism, corruption, cronyism, the leadership that emerged through this process would be anything but good.

Most of the leaders that emerged are nothing but stooges, tailor made to serve the interest of their benefactors and to some extent also work for themselves to ensure the continuation of the vicious circle of recruitment into politics.

No meaningful things will come out of them but the under development of the Nigeria State. They would forever remain stooges and grateful to their god fathers at the expense of our collective interest.

Unemployment and youth restiveness will continue to dog and haunt the society.

Peace will continue to elude the society. In security will also continue un abated as stop gap measures will remain the tool in fighting insurgency and other ills in the society.

The society will remain polarised as result of the hate and divisiveness accentuated by the primaries.

Corruption will become more pervasive in the system as the agencies fighting corruption are going to be whittled down by the corrupt leaders that emerged.

They would frustrate the agencies because the leaders, in themselves came through flawed and corrupt process. They would in turn render the corruption agencies comatose.

Who are the losers in all these? Is it the Nigeria State or the “Good People of conscience” who could have done something to stop the sinking ship to the abyss, but decide to look the other way in order not soil their names and integrity.

If the political parties in themselves could not organise a credible primary, then they have lost the right to shout and call INEC names for giving them, what they gave to themselves.

This vicious circle will continue as long as good people refuse to join politics. Their in actions will forever allow the charlatans to govern us and run the country down.

We have one Nigeria and it is our collective responsibilities to stop and arrest the decline. We must not allow ours fears to dominate us, the notion of “sit down and look” will not take us any where but to self destruction.

This country is blessed with good people, all that is needed is the will to fight injustice.

We must not allow ourselves to be mocked in the comity of nations. Nigeria has the capacity to do better then what we are presenting as our best to the world.

My appeal is to those good people and agencies of government responsible in the conduct of our elections to strive and do the right thing.

Hope is not lost all together. We still have about five month to the general election to make amends and ensure the process works well. Anything short of that is an invitation to anarchy and the collapse of the Nigerian State.

Long live the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

WHY IBRAHIM GAIDAM WOULD BE MISSED

Yobe was the most backward area of the former Borno when it was created in 1991.
The newly created state, did not have the luxury of having basic infrastructure other states had when they started.
I recall when we had to commute between Maiduguri and Damaturu in order to come to work for lack of accommodation. Where the accommodations were available five to six officers had to share a room that was the pitiful situation we had to go through.
27 years down lane a lot has been done but we are not there yet.
From Ahmed Sani Daura to Bukar Abba Ibrahim, Dabo Aliyu, Ben Kalio, Late Mamman Ali, my bosom friend, may his gentle soul rest in peace to Ibrahim Gaidam.
The state witnessed some level of developments and peace even though critics would disagree with me but this argument can be left for another day.
The import of this write up is not assess the performance of the actors that providence had given them the opportunity to pilot the affairs of the state, but rather to show how the people of Yobe would miss the peace and tranquillity that characterise Governor Ibrahim Gaidam’s tenure.
Many would be surprised why I of all people would say all these good things about the governor.
I decided to do so because you can not change facts, the truth needs to be told, after all we are not enemies.
My other reason for writing on the tenure of Ibrahim Gaidam is because of the uniqueness of the period he piloted the affairs of the state.
The state needed the maturity he handled issues in the light of the difficult circumstances that were prevalent during his tenure which is about coming to end on the 29th of May, 2019.
Firstly, Gaidam took over the leadership of the state after the demise of Governor Mamman Ali on the 26th of January 2009.
He was sworn in as a governor on the 27th of January 2009. His first political test was how to unite his political base.
Late Governor Mamman Ali came from a different senatorial zone with Gaidam, to please the family of Ali he picked his younger brother as his Deputy Governor. This move alone endeared him to the family and base of his late predecessor.
For the remaining two years of the Ali’s tenure Gaidam did not tinker with the state administrative machinery put in place by his predecessor rather he built on it. This unique move kept the party intact and gave him time to consolidate.
Governor Ali started some good works for the state and Gaidam being an insider in the government knew very well he has to tread carefully.
As a technocrat who was having his first feel in partisan politics, Gaidam was not as politically exposed as his predecessor who had been in Senate for period of time. He understood that very well and did the right thing.
He managed the precarious situation so well by not out rightly dismantling the legacies of his predecessor in order cut his nitch.
Unfortunately as governor Gaidam was settling and trying to chart out the way forward for Yobe State, the Boko Haram insurgents attacked Damaturu the capital of Yobe state, on the 4th of November 2011, in one of their most deadly and coordinated assaults.
The insurgency in the state heightened after the November 4th attack.

This subsequently, led to the declaration of state of emergency by the Federal Government on Borno and Yobe the front lines states of Boko Haram insurgency.

From then on internal security became the major priority of the State.

Gaidam with his experience from the Civil Service, knew very early that Yobe as an agrarian state with high level of poverty, illiteracy, and low level of internally generated revenue (IGR) and deficit of infrastructure, can not compete with other states of the federation in terms of how it can move the state forward.

He also understood very early that the government is the only viable industry that sustains the socio economic activities of the state.

He therefore had to cut a balance between human and infrastructural development for the state.

In doing so he ensured that the political victimisation that characterised previous governments which was robbing the state of its most experienced officials must not be allowed to continue.

He also ensured the acrimonious relationship between the political parties in the state must be contained so that it does not to derail the efforts of government.

By the time he was half way through his tenure all dissenting voices from the opposition parties fizzled out.

The civil service also became less confrontational.

The state experienced a high level of tolerance among its people.

He also ensured the kleptomaniac tendencies that were replete in the bureaucracy were contained and reduced to manageable level.

He took control of machinery of government and blocked all areas of leakages.

To gain the support of the civil servants which was his primary base he ensured that their wages and salaries were paid as at when due.

He did not stop at that, he was also known to have ensured that pensioners were paid their stipends without delay.

Today he is acknowledged to be among the few governors in the country who do not owe any salary and pension arrears to its workers.

Critics may say that he pays the lowest salary.

This may be true but the strategy was adopted perhaps to ensure the sustainability of paying the monthly wage bills in the light of the low allocation the state collects for the federation account.

Another reason for this can be attributed to the low internally generated revenue (IGR) the state collects.

Any body who knows the economic environment in Yobe would agree that the whole economy of the state revolves around the government being the biggest industry and the biggest spender in the state.

Any default on the part of government to pay salaries to its workers which in turn energises and stimulates the economic activities will have a catastrophic consequences on lives of the agrarian population of the state.

Gaidam also did well in the health sector, roads, education and housing programme just like his predecessors.

As a major legacy he is also developing the cargo airport in Damaturu, which is envisaged to be commissioned before the end of his tenure.

These are some of the things Governor Gaidam had done for Yobe State. As he begins to wind up and having anointed a perfect gentleman to take over from him, Yobeans will certainly MISS HIM for the peace and tranquillity he has brought to the state in spite of the problem caused by the Boko Haram insurgency which was not his making.

We pray the political terrain in Yobe will witness same peace, tranquillity and less acrimonious politics that characterise previous transitions.

While Gaidam would be missed as the governor, we take solace that he is heading to the national assembly as a Senator.

We wish him good luck and many more years of services to the state in whatever capacity he finds himself.

THE MORE THE MERRIER

The buzzword word “the more the merrier” best describes what is going in the Nigerian political space.

This expression was first recorded in 1530, when it was put as “The more the merrier; the fewer, the better fare” (meaning “with fewer there would be more to eat”), an observation that made its way into numerous proverb collections.

The phrase is also used sarcastically when an unwanted person is invited or invites himself to the party.

This goes with popular adage “too many cooks spoil the broth”.
If too many people try to control, influence, or work on something, the final product will be worse as a result.

It is within these contending issues that we shall examine what is happening in the Nigerian political space.
Less then six moth to the 2019 general election a clear picture is now emerging of those that are likely going to contest for the highest office in the land.

As at last count there were no less then 46 candidates across the registered political parties who have indicated their intentions to wrestle power from the current incumbent President Mohammad Buhari.

Ordinarily the number should not be a concern to any one because that is the beauty of democracy “the more the merrier.” It accommodates all shades of opinions by providing every one level play ground to express their opinions and partake in all political activities including the right to stand for elections and the right to vote and be voted for”.

However when the process becomes over crowded and un wealthy the system may need to apply some rules to guide the process. But this should not be done in such a way to deliberately exclude other from the process.

The APC may have blocked other entrants to the race by giving the incumbent President the first right of refusal.

The has also decided to adopt the direct primaries for selection of their Presidential candidates all believing that the popularity, President Buhari enjoys will scare any interested parties to play the spoiler during the presidential primaries.

If this plays well for the APC, the PDP are not that fortunate as the splinter groups that left the party during the 2015 elections are rushing back home to their old party to play another spoiler just like they did in the last election.

The question to ask is how healthy is this for the electoral process and growth of our democracy?
If the process allows members to decamp from one political party to another at will without consequences, simply because their interest could not be accommodated then there will always be serious infringements in the way we select our leaders.

It is clear from the fore going, there will be no easy fix to this problem as long as the political parties use the lacuna in the political process to woo political opponents in order to increase their political chances of wining an election.

Inec or the National assembly must come up with rules, regulations or legislation to correct the lacuna, anything short of that will be recipe for a political crisis that may threaten our nascent democracy.

What we are witnessing in the assembly regarding who should be their leaders is an eye opener, when processes were allowed to be determined by the operators without clear guidelines.

“ A stich in time saves many”.

THE NOISE ABOUT THE RAILWAYS:

I recall the fervour, the power and the passion my lecturers exude, when discussing the evils of colonialism and the legacy of colonial infrastructure in Nigeria.

The cold war between the two major powers of the world and the rise of Marxism literature in the Nigeria Universities, created a class of intellectuals who competed for dominance and intellectual superiority, with each arguing for or against the establishment of capitalism or socialism as political philosophy for Nigeria.

The push and pull by the capitalist and socialist Lectures to sway our nascent state just emerging from colonialism, to adopt capitalism or socialism as the nation’s political philosophy was phenomenal and unprecedented.

The socialist camps, saw nothing good in the colonial infrastructures, to them the railways running from Maiduguri to Port Harcourt and Lagos, the roads linking the North and the Southern Protectorate Regions were merely colonial arrangements aimed at siphoning the wealth of the colonised states.

To them the rails and the roads networks running from the North to the Seas in the South were colonial deliberate attempt aimed at moving raw materials to argument the industries in the West after the industrial revolution that took place in the middle of the 18th century.

The cold war also provided a period for the re examination of western science education and imperialism.

With the fall of the soviet union, the emergence of globalization and internet, the structure of global trade changed dramatically. Relations between Nation States also changed.

Geographical borders no longer constitute a barrier to international trade and human relations.

The dominant infrastructures built by colonialism that were treated with suspicion became the bed rock and instruments that were used for trade and movement of people across nations.

In Nigeria, these colonial legacies were abandon and left to rot and decay partly because of the failure of the bureaucracy and the historical apathy associated with them.

The National development plans that were developed after independence suffered so many contradictions, with each following the same colonial model of infrastructural development philosophy.

While the colonial infrastructures were guided by the demands for raw materials, the Nigeria approach lacked vision, foresight and policy direction.

The national transport policy that precede colonialism was badly articulated as it failed to deal with the needs of the emerging economy, rather it took comfort in extending whatever legacies the colonial arrangements left in place.

The road infrastructure also adopted the same pattern of development running from the North to the sea in the South.
The policy divided roads according to spheres of powers and influences. It granted the so called trunk “A” roads to the Federal Government, while the inter and intra state roads that were to link up with the trunk “A” roads and open the rural communities for the movements of goods, services were devolved to the local and state governments.

The Nigeria Airways, once the most vibrant airline on the continent suffered bad management and bureaucratic interferences and was ran to the ground.

The collapse of the government controlled transportation infrastructure heralded the emergence of businesses on the scene to try their hands in the transportation sector. But because of the massive capital required, the businesses that took over from the state soon crushed because of strangulating high interest rates charged by the banks.

In security on the roads and the unsafe nature of our airlines has forced the elites who control massive resources to became jittery and look for alternative means of transportation.

The fear of being abducted or killed on roads due its state of its dis repair brought about the need to push for the re building of the railways.

The airlines that would have provided safer means of transportation also become un safe as the airlines operators were un able to keep up with maintenance schedule of their fleets.

The Rising debt profile of the airline operators and aging fleets has forced them to cut corners in the maintenance schedules of their aircrafts thereby making flights un safe.

The only “safest” way to travel in Nigeria these days is by the trains.

The clamour to resuscitate the rail system and the Nigeria airline became a must for the elites, who now found comfort in the rail services that were introduced on select routes to solve their needs to escape to their hotspots for leisure.

The new found love for the rail ways was not therefore for the love of the masses or the economy.

The debate by the politicians as to who is doing more in returning the two dominant transportation system to move economy forward is short sighted and dangerous. As the process had already been politicised with two major political parties, each claiming credit for spear heading the restoration of the sector.

But before we decide who to credit for the move and cast our votes for the winner in the debate let us ponder on these

It is clear from the foregoing that the push to revive the transportation sector being championed by the political class falls short of the demands of sector.

An examination of currents efforts shows that we have not learnt from our past mistakes. The plans have not been well thought out. We are yet to see any empirical evidence to show that we understood the causes that led to the complete collapse of the transport sector.

Rather we are being carried away by the elitist sentiments of building the railways to serve their newly discovered love for safe transportation systems in the light of the constant threat to their lives by kidnappers and Boko Haram insurgence.

The other un spoken reason the politicians and the elites are not telling us is the available “soft” loans the Chinese are dangling in the face of our leaders to assist in the re building of the continents infrastructure.

We must not forget that the Chinese loans are not value free. A further examination of the arrangements for the loans reveals the Chinese Government grant the loan and the Chinese companies build the rails and deliver the wagons.

I challenge any government official to dispute the fact that due diligence and international tendering process were followed in the procurement and the re building of the railways.

Another short coming of the rail re building, was its emphasis on the movement of the people rather then for goods and services that would benefit the economy more.

Another point worth noting is why should we in the 21st century borrow funds to rebuild an archaic rail net network, while the whole world are moving to fast track rail system that cuts the travelling time to almost jet time.

In the last ten years Dubai has developed and modernised its rail system.

Saudi Arabia has also within the same period introduced the rail transportation system which was non existent. It has successfully built and linked the cities of Jeddah, Mecca and Medina a distance of over 500km with a fast track rail network.

The Chinese whom we are massively borrowing from have modernised their locomotive system and old gauge with the fast track systems connecting all its provinces.

Another beauty about the Chinese Model, is they did not destroy their old rail network they allowed it to run hand in hand with the fast track system. What these means is that the population was given the choice to decide how one intends to travel, depending on the size of your pocket.

In conclusion we are calling on the authorities in Nigeria to rethink the approach in re building the rails, roads and airlines network.
We must not allow politics to derail the efforts being put in place to revive these vital sectors of the economy.

Governments come and go and its expected that each and every one of them leaves behind an enduring legacy that impacts on the economy and the living condition of the people.

We must promote continuity and avoid wasting our time on who to give credit for what they have sworn to provide. They are not doing us any favour the government is doing what it ought to be doing. That was what they campaign for before we gave them our franchise.

Posterity is always there to give credit for the most accomplished persons, groups or governments.
The debate by the politicians as to who did what should be left to posterity to decide.

Nigerians are intelligent enough to discern and a portion credit, after all governments came with promises to change the way we live for the better.
Our collective aspirations must be guided by what we bequeath to Nigerians that are coming long after we have left the scene.

The memories of the Balewas, Awolowos, Sardaunas, Zikwes and many more good Nigerians that are no longer with us but their legacies and thoughts remain with the nation forever.

The nation has its own way of recognising its heroes.

We must ignore the credit seekers and do the right things.

Long live the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

ONE MISTAKE TOO MANY!

I was on this medium accused of being anti Buhari, for writing on issues that exposes the under belly of some of the actions of this administration.

As a journalist, I am apolitical, I served this country diligently for 35years in many capacities and did so to the best of my ability. I served the military and all the governments that came when the country returned to civil rule including the present government.

I am also a true believer in the Nigerian project. To me therefore Nigeria is bigger then any one person.

For any one to insinuate that I am partisan because I served the government of Obj and Jonathan is not only unfair, but it simply means the person does not know where I am coming from.

My comments on public affairs are based on my experiences in those tortuous period and the journalism creed I was taught in my journalism school to uphold.

I do not engage in mudslinging or partisanship. But if some of my writings were seen to be political, I have no regrets for as long as they were reflections of what is going in the society and the truth has to be told.

In my attempt to present factual narratives as I see them people sometimes choose the points that does not appeal to their idiosyncrasies and make it an issue.

I strongly believe in the ability of my readers to separate between actual facts and partisanship.
The hall mark of journalism is to state the facts and allow the reader to make sense out of the narrative.

As harbingers of news and a public affairs commentators I refuse to be silenced. One of the major absurdity of our time is that comments on public affairs even in good taste were twisted and politicised. That is why good people no longer comment on public affairs issues.

They have been intimidated and cajoled to imbibe the culture of silence by those we elected to run our affairs on our behalf. Many have decided to “sit down and look” because of fear.

In a nation of about 200 million for people to assume that there will be no counter opinions on issues is to say that the society is doomed and apocalyptic.

To imagine that only one person has the monopoly of wisdom, honesty, uprightness and he is the only one above reproach is just like condemning the whole society.

We must not allow our fear to take over our rights to hold opinion and speak out. Our continued silence in face of all the in justice going on in the society will give rise to the emergence of dictatorship.

It would encourage our leaders to over load on us and treats us with disdain, contempt and impunity.
When a society becomes docile, leaders in their inner minds feel they have conquered and enslaved the collective morality of the society. This also give rise to the cohesive agencies of the state to bully the citizenry.

The supporters of the leaders also erroneously start to believe they are above the law and invincible. They become judgemental there à qadjudging the whole members of the society as dishonest, corrupt and dishonourable.

Contempt for the judiciary and rule of becomes rampant. Public officers disregard orders of the courts because they feel insulated and protected by the “powers that be”.

To them no body has the right to speak or hold opinions even on matters that affects the society’s general wellbeing’s as a people.

For sometimes now I have been deeply reflecting to locate the reasons for the hate, venom and the divisiveness that is now tearing our society apart

The simple conclusion I was able to arrive at was that mass poverty, intellectual bankruptcy, greed, selfishness and boot licking in the society has eaten deep in to our moral campus.

The society’s ability to reason and rationalise issues and take positions for the good of all has been beclouded by blind following.

As a result of these disconnect, the gullible lower strata in the society became despondent, divided, restive and militarised. They become a reserve army to be easily recruited by the powerful and the rich.

Their hate, frustrations and anger easily translates to blind support. To them therefore the society must coalesce and say no evil of their leader.

Buhari, has over years understood the frustrations of the lumpents and the down trodden and is providing for them the leadership style they yearn for which is visionless, cupid vindictive and dictatorial.

They hale, imbibe every drastic actions taken by the authority as an answer to their inner desire to settle scores against the society.

They see it as a triumph against the rich and affluent in the society whom they believe have stunted their progress to grow. They have internalised and truly believe the elite would not deliver on their promises to lift them out of poverty.
They welcome the anti corruption crusade targeting the rich and the affluent in the society as a sure way of venting their anger and frustrations on the few that they believe have cornered their common wealth.
They were mesmerised by the crudity of the fight against corruption and welcome it in spite of the misery, poverty, lack of security and miss governance in all the strata of government.

The enjoy the dictum “ if we can’t be let no one be” Their admiration for what is going on is not for love of any one person but it simply falls within their idiosyncrasies.

The elites and political class because of their greed, lust for materialism and power have fallen victim to the strategic “thinking” of the government they accuse for being clueless and visionless, are they?.

Some few weeks ago the NigeriaPolice was accused of plotting with some splinter group in the National Assembly to impeach the Senate President.

The plan failed woefully because it lacked strategic thinking, selfishness took over the execution of the game plan.

The executive realising the plan was poorly executed came out of the contraption clean by blaming the Police high command for the dirty job.

The Police had to come up with damage control measures to save their image actions. Perhaps this was why the Police was circumspect when DSS came calling on the National Assembly again.

The Senate President in a deft political move closed the assemblyfor almost two month thus giving him time to re strategize.

Not learning from their wrong political calculations the cabal yet again drafted personnel of the DSS to lay siege at the gate of the National Assembly to prevent Senators from attending a meeting called by the Senate President to address some of the issues the executive was selling to the public that needed the attention of the Assembly.

The public have started to “buy in” to the argument as public opinion was growing against the closure of the assembly for that long period of time.

But alas the project was again messed up by the cabal whose main goals were to impeach the Senate President and his Deputy rather then for the issues they felt the assembly should expeditiously handle for the good of the country.

Unfortunately for the cabal they under estimated the capacity of the Vice President who is now the Acting President to rationalise issues and take advantage of them.

The Law Professor will definitely not take the rubbish and the way the cabal do their things.

In a swift political move the Acting President sacked the Director General of the SSS and issued a statement through his media chief condemning the actions of the DG SSS citing lack of consultations with the executive and describing the action by former DG as undemocratic and anti thesis to the rule of law.
Since that move was taken pundits and political gladiators have taken over the air space and social media presenting all sorts of hypothesis and theories as to why and how the DG was removed.
Three dominant paradigms have so far emerged with each trying to justify why the Dg Sss was sacked.
The acting President cited lack of consultation with the executive and abuse of due process of the law and separation of power.
The other group sympathetic to government claimed the Dg Sss was playing the game plan he and the Senate President had mapped out in order to scuttle the move by the APC Senators to impeach him and his Deputy.

There are those group who also believed the executive hatched the plan in order to deal with Dg Sss whom they accuse of being too close to the Senate President and was under mining every attempt to impeach the leaders of the national assembly.

Other issues introduced to debate was the call on the Acting President to apply similar moral principles that guided him to remove the Dg Sss to also remove the Minister of Finance who had been accused of NYSC certificate forgery.

As a law Professor he needs not to be reminded the dangers of selective applications of the law on the society.

The actions of the DG Sss to invade the national assembly in the fashion the Russians did when they took over Ukraine is condemnable, not acceptable in democratic setting. Those that were behind the action must be un covered and made to face the wrath of the law.

Daura is no longer the Dg of Sss. He has become the fall guy of the absurdity that characterise what happened on the 7th of August.

The blind obsession by both the Executive and APC to remove the Senate President because he defected from the party is costing this country dearly in the eyes of the civilised world.

We must not allow the matter to be buried under the carpet. It is becoming a national disgrace. It is also becoming one mistake too many.

We therefore call on the authority to decisively deal with matter and also act on similar issues that are hanging begging for the attention of the executive.

Long live the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

ARE WE LOSING OUR MORAL HIGH GROUNDS?

When you control massive resources even if it is not yours it gives one some aura of power and control. The Small, the Big and the Mighty will always try to be on your side.

The office of the Minister of Finance of the Federal Republic Nigeria is powerful because it has the awesome power to dispense funds to the various arms of governments, individuals and companies, that is why even fellow Ministers are cautious when they speak on matters that affects the Minister.

When the Finance Minister speaks, the big and mighty fall in to line for fear of being strangulated of flow of funds.

If its true that the National Assembly detected that the Minister of Finance submitted fake NYSC certificate and yet she was cleared to hold public office then something must be wrong in the way we are fighting corruption.

Amazingly also is how the Minister waggled her way through all the agencies responsible for vetting individuals that are being prepared to hold public office?

The actions of the NYSC headquarters in trying to sweep the matter under the carpet by not responding to the enquiries of the press to simply determine whether the certificate of exemption used by Minister Finance to secure her employment as minister is fake or not is to say the least disturbing.

In addition the in action by the executive and the failure of the relevant agencies of the state such as the ICPC to wane in to the controversy and do the right thing is regrettable.

The reason why I am saying this is because the law regarding somebody who violates the provisions that establishes the NYSC is so clear and it does not require further interpretation of the courts to apply.

To wit the law states that ;
“The year-long service, organised by the National Youths Service Corps (NYSC), is compulsory for all Nigerians who graduate from universities or equivalent institutions at less than 30 years of age.

In addition to being a requirement for government and private sector jobs in Nigeria, the enabling law prescribes punishment for anyone who absconds from the scheme or forges its certificates.

Eligible Nigerians who skipped the service are liable to be sentenced to 12 months imprisonment and/or N2,000 fine, according to Section 13 of the NYSC law.
Section 13 (3) of the law also prescribes three-year jail term or option of N5,000 fine for anyone who contravenes provision of the law.

ASubsection 4 of the same section also criminalises giving false information or illegally obtaining the agency’s certificate. It provides for up to three-year jail term for such offenders.

The only category of Nigerians are qualified for exemption are those;
1. who graduated after turning 30.
2. holders of national honours;
3. persons who served in the armed forces or the police for up to nine months.
4. staff of intelligence agencies, or the armed forces.

In all these the Hon. Ministers Finance did qualify to be exempted from the one year mandatory period of the NYSC.

Available educational records of the Minister which has not been denied by her or spokes person shows that;
Mrs Adeosun graduated from the Polytechnic of East London in 1989, at the age of 22.

The curriculum vitae, of Mrs Adeosun shows that she was born in March 1967.

Having graduated at 22, it is obligatory for Mrs Adeosun to participate in the one-year national service, for her to qualify for any job in Nigeria.

By this it is indisputable that Minister knows the certificate of NYSC she is holding is fake.

Consequently, for the Minister to say that she was swindled by a third party, whom she requested to handle the exemption request with the NYSC is not only a lie but an abuse to our collective psyche.

Her explanations are therefore disrespectful, absurd, disgraceful and arrant non sense.

The only moral high ground that remains for the Minister is for her to voluntarily resign.

I am saying this because when the Minister was having her running battles with the embattled Director General of the Nigerian Stock Exchange, She based her arguments on moral high ground.

She claimed that the DG was involved in activities that are un expected of a public officer. These are some the reasons she gave in suspending the DG;
“ she alleged the DG is a Director in Medusa Investment Limited which is in violation of Public Service Rule 030424.
“ she alleged DG was involved in awarding contracts to the same company and others to which he was related, thus resulting in a conflict of interest”.

So we believe what is “good for goose is good the gander”

Mr. President you must know that the conspiracy theorist are going the round postulating that you refused to act because of the dark clouds hanging over your head on issues bordering certificates forgery.

The third columnist are urging you Mr. President to end this national embarrassment by releasing the signed copy of the Minister’s resignation letter under your custody and end matter.

Mr. President, your body language on the matter is giving agencies of government responsible to handle this case some discomfort in holding the minister accountable for the criminality of her actions.

Mr. President if the Minister in spite of the clear position of the law on her actions still wish to cling to her position. In this regard you may wish to do the needful by sacking the Minister in order come out clean on the matter and remain on the moral high ground.

Any thing short of this will expose the in sincerity of your government in its fight against corruption.