By; Andy Akporugo Jr
When President Muhammad Buhari stood on the podium that ecstatic day promising, to wiId applause, that he belonged to everyone and to no one, I didn’t believe he wrote the speech. I already held him, just as I trusted him to hold himself, to better standards than to belong to anybody when he sits in an office offered by everybody. To belong to one person would be at once immoral, criminal and pardon me, outright foolish – and I was not going to be enthused simply because a man promises not to qualify for any of those adjectives. And so I didn’t see the statement as providing any useful mantra for good governance. But ours is a country which only respects good standards by throwing mud at them, and so such promise, empty as it was, was elevated to the status of such huge philosophical punch lines as JFK’s ‘‘ask not..’’
Since then however, he has been accused of standing below his promise in just about all of his appointments. To this I have always smartly drawn out my pocket calculator, to prove my argument that appearances are mostly deceiving, and that close scrutiny would show that he was in fact only correcting the anomalous appointments of the previous regimes.
Then came the allegation that he was always looking up to find the moon each time the herdsmen wreaked havoc everywhere in the country except anywhere they call home; and then getting busy with dealing with that colourful, even clownish fellow who just happened from a cybercafé to speak over the heads of Nigerians, while the marauders retreated into familiar homes, for an evening of kunu served with blood stained calabashes.
Again I had responded repeatedly unto loud reproach, that unlike boko haram the Fulani headsmen had no known bases. Like water in a sieve, they simply filtered away into oblivion after each attack and our army hard as they tried were untrained, unequipped and so helpless to find them. They were however keeping tanks and personnel on ground in the cities in wait, at watch, to forestall further attacks through city gates!
It was the business of my interrogators to make sense of my explanations. I didn’t care. I had done my part!
But then there is also Osahon Snr Ihenyen. He is not from Nnamdi Kanu’s country. But he [as indeed have many others] has alleged that this government is not engaged in an anti-corruption war but only in a transfer-of-corruption struggle! My answer then was that his mathematics was bad, although I couldn’t prove how. I soon offered him the best justice I could in the circumstance, with my advice that even if PMB favoured his friends, kinsmen and party members, Nigeria would yet be better for it when PDP’s turn comes in the future to take its revenge on the APC thieves as well. But that talk is truly for the beer parlours. Isn’t it?
How am I intelligently to explain to the shrill cries of my friend, why in a country in which the Presidency accuses the judiciary, drowning in a deluge of cases, of delaying justice if not totally compromising it, it has taken so long for the President to attend to just one case even when 90% of the work has already been done and expressed in a bunch of reports.
True we saw Vice President Osinbajo bend over from the weight of the reports on the President’s bosom friend, as he walked to deliver them to the President. But truly don’t we all know that the most important part of the report falls under the title of ‘‘Recommendations’’ in the last two pages? The President could read it as a bedtime story tonight and order some action immediately. At worst the SGF will, mastering the justice system, yet be able to come out clean in the same way that the others have had their reputation burnished; all this, while he goes back to being the President’s friend once more, and join, now and again in those testy games of Ludo, when guests depart the Rock.
Anything done in 2018 will suffer the judgement of being insincere and seen only as a fraudulent pitch for the peoples vote once again, when tomorrow comes!