The Oasis Reporters
January 18, 2018
For anyone desirous of playing a part, any part for that matter not only in politics in Nigeria but also in other climes, the starting point is having an idea of what or where your interest lies. From here, you must be registered so that you can obtain a voters card.
In my former constituency these preliminaries form what is collectively called ” Battle Procedure ” The voters card is actually the arsenal you take to the battle field, without it you cannot play any role in any political engagement. The voter’s card allows you to fight several battles or what you may call political engagements. The candidate of yuout choice must be worthy of your vote else you would simply have wasted your vote and by implications lost such a battle.
The candidates too prepare for the battle by drawing up their campaign manifestos which will almost always replicate what the party manifesto contains. There is no other way by which you can know what is in a candidate’s mind. The political party is supposed to have a life of its own but in Nigeria, the moment the votes are counted, the political parties technically lapse into a state of dormancy much in the manner of a vulcano until another election is around the corner. In Nigeria, most candidates are at best, extortionists. I stand on solid ground to say this because in the last elections back in 2015, I was duped of my votes in all of the elections. Virtually all the candidates I voted for turned out to be fraudsters because all have failed to deliver on their promises.
The worst of the candidates turned out to be my State Governor. This man at best is a serial political rapist and has failed abysmally to deliver on any of the campaign promises he made to the electorate.
Rather he is inflicting the worst pains any leadership could possibly inflict even against political opponents. Instead of growing the State, he is diminishing it in every way possible. Even in these very difficult times, the Mallam derives pleasure in inflicting pain through the dismissal of workers, demolishing of people’s houses, failure to pay workers their entitlements as well as failing to secure the lives and property of the citizenry.
His policies have so dampened the morale of those in the employ of the State Civil Service that most have simply become walking corpses.
The future is bleak for the work force as none can be sure of keeping their jobs whilst the dictator holds sway.
To make up for the failures, Kaduna has become the propaganda capital of this nation.
In saner climes, it ought to be the opposition that should be involved in propaganda to discredit the government in power but in Kaduna the government is systematically deploying a cocktail of propaganda, blackmail and intimidation as strategy for survival. The electorate can see and are seeing through this veil. Never before have the basic tenets of democracy been so viciously raped as it is in Kaduna State today.
Similarly at the Federal government level the story is not significantly different. The electorate is largely deflated given the goodwill invested in this government. Of course we knew that repairing the destruction left behind by the tsunami of 16 years was not going to be easy but we hardly knew we were casting our votes for a lack lustre government that would footdrag and lacking in decisiveness. The failure to take decisive action has manifested in the embarrassing delays in making appointments to the Boards of parastatals and agencies of government. After winning the 2015 presidential election, it took time to form the government and the health issues of Mr President became an albatross.
All the while, Nigerians waited patiently and prayerfully for the President to regain his health. It was while the President was away that his wife Hajia Aisha raised the alarm that “hyenas and jackals” had taken the government hostage. She lamented the fact that loyal APC supporters were not taken on board. This was an embarrassing or rather, an outright indictment of the government most worthy of an internal investigation of sort but none took place after the President returned. And the hyenas and jackals are still having a field day, creating the impression that with the cabal holding this nation by the jugular, our dear nation seems set to grind to a halt.
The cabal from my understanding has been responsible for this nation’s failure to move forward because they are working only to protect their narrow self interest. If the cabal is worth anything, why is it that there is so much insecurity in the country? With one of either the hyenas or jackals sitting firmly on the Board of the NNPC, why was he not proactive enough to have prevented this debilitating fuel shortages? What is the wisdom in delaying the appointments to Federal government Boards and Paraststals almost 3 years after forming the cabinet? Party faithfuls have complained about being excluded in the government and the usual explanation has been for people to be patient. Surely even patience has its elasticity level and with just about a year to go in the life of this government, I really will not know what is there to be patient for. This mix of atrophy and lethargy has been the greatest undoing for this government. I am afraid that this will be a major campaign issue as we draw nearer to yet another election year in 2019.
The recent approval of Board appointees some of who are already departed is therefore only a palliative measure amounting to too little too late. No serious minded politician would have had the patience to wait for 3 years for such an appointment as such could have since moved on with their lives. In all of this, only one person ought to take full responsibility for what has or has not happened to this country. That person is the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria since the buck ends on his table. Thus far, the major problem appears to be the lack of capacity for dynamic leadership on the part of the President. The entire cabinet must share the blame for failing to help the Presrident succeed. Any effort now at making new appointments designed to get stranded party faithfuls on board clearly ammounts to a pacification exercise.
I told a friend who recently got an appointment after he had deployed his resources working to install the present government to power in Kaduna State that he was simply a recruit for the electioneering campaigns for the 2019 elections. The dictator in charge of proceedings in Kaduna runs the State much in the manner and style of a garrison commander, whereas the people of Kaduna have had enough and are eagerly waiting for 2019. The very thought of another 4 years with the same characters remaining in power is paralyzing particularly in Kaduna State. The little man has ruined our State through the anti people policies he is implementing.
Last year ended up in a face off between his government and teachers in public schools after a dubious and highly controversial competency test he had administered.
The man is still bent on terminating the appointments of about 22,000 teachers for allegedly failing the test. The teachers union are in court challenging the attempt but even so, the dictator is still threatening Armageddon.
As schools reopen in the new year, the teachers union in solidarity with their colleagues have called for an indefinite strike.
On the other hand, the governor is saying that any teacher joining the strike should consider themselves sacked. This is how the little man intends to Make Kaduna Great Again. Bad as the situation is at the Federal level, the options are simply difficult to contemplate because at that level it will almost certainly be putting old wines into new bottles. The plain truth is that our country has for a long time been a hostage to the same characters either in or out of military uniform as well as their civilian accomplices. To dream of a people driven CHANGE is to be a denizen of Alice’s wonderland.
Written by Gora Dauda.
He is a retired military officer and writes from Kaduna, North West Nigeria.