The election into the office of the president of Nigeria is due on 14th of February. The two major contenders are the incumbent President Goodluck Jonathan of the Peoples Democratic Party and General Muhammadu Buhari of the All Progressives Congress.
If President Jonathan wins the election, there is no better way to predict the future of Nigeria for the next 4 years except by looking at his last 6 years of leading Nigeria.
President Jonathan’s government in the last 6 years in my opinion is one full of dreams and in those dreams are pictures of a great nation. However those pictures have only remained at the dreams stage. The way to turn the dreams into reality is completely non-existent for the past 6 years. No noticeable sense of direction at all.
Nigerians would agree with me that the administration has not done enough to affect the nation positively. Looking through the last 6 years of President Jonathan’s administration, only those benefiting directly from his government by means of their ‘stomach infrastructure’ that would think otherwise. Not much needed progressive changes have been recorded for the last 6 years; it all appears that things are getting worse. Most Nigerians are really struggling to cope with life and the President Goodluck Jonathan’s government does not appear to have taken notice of the intensity of the sufferings and if they do, do not have a clue as to causing the needed changes.
Nigerians are dying daily in their thousands from preventable diseases, religious violence, lack of clean water, lack of electricity, bad road network, poor standard of living, extreme poverty, poor medical facilities and many more. The life of an average Nigerian is worth less than a chicken and they die in unbelievable large numbers. President Jonathan and his crew do not appear to understand the size of this pandemic and have often exhibited high level of indifference to the plight of Nigerians.
President Jonathan had often said that Nigerians would see how well he had performed when he must have left office. I can’t but wonder how Nigerians would see what President Jonathan’s administration had done, when his gone, if we cannot see them now that he is still in power. His utterances most often comes across as very patronising and seeking of Nigerians pity, not to talk of those of his wife.
This is not what we need; we need a president who has got the bite to cause the change. To help the President understand this better, we all can see his performance now and it is nothing but shambles.
This is the reason Nigeria’s successive governments would repair a 10 kilometre road and invites CNN to cover the launching of the road; they would build a bridge or make a well in a village and invite Aljazeera to cover it. They’d call a big musician; make party in celebration of a project that should be a normal daily occurrence.
It is shameful to read local and foreign news showing projects that the successive Nigerian Governments class as achievement. They spent millions on project that should cost a lot less and make loads of noise so this is seen as if the administration is working miracles. The projects are made more obvious because successive Government have greatly under-performed and every little thing done by the incumbent government is blown beyond proportion.
Since Independence on 1st of October 1960, every Nigerians had advocated for a better nation. They have asked for their basic needs to be met by successive governments, however due to high level corruption, lack of accountability, wickedness and greed have not allowed the expectations to be met; it has been disappointments and setbacks from the successive governments.
By all standards, any government not able to protect and provide the basic needs of its citizen is a failed one. Nigeria so far is a failed nation, only its very resilient citizens have kept it going.
Nigerians voted for President Goodluck Jonathan believing he is the god, sent to deliver the mostly poor Nigerians from the web of poverty and introduce the change they have long waited for. He came across as knowing what poverty is, having experienced poverty at its worst himself, this is the reason that Nigerians voted for him with all their heart in large number, believing he is the messiah. However his case is like that of a poor man who got drunk for one night and forgot about his poverty, he failed to realise that when his drunk stupor wears out, he would be back to his status quo.
President Jonathan is yet to do what he promised Nigerians in the past 6 years, yet wants another 4 years to complete what he has not started, can’t get that. Although being a president, President Jonathan may never be poor again, but he should understand that what goes around comes around.
As much as the problem of Nigeria did not start with President Jonathan’s administration, he came to power promising to fix things, but has not done that over the last 6 years and has not shown he’s in the right direction to start fixing Nigeria. I believe Nigeria is too big for him to handle; he is highly incapable to comprehend the enormous task involved and how to prevent or avert the disaster we are in. If a football team is not performing, the coach gets sacked!
Can I trust President Jonathan with another 4 years? I would say not, can you?
Nigerians by now should be enjoying adequate security, stable power, comfortable transportation, good policing, quality health services, good road network, general clean environment, increased jobs, transparency within the various sectors, technological innovations, reduction or complete eradication of poverty and many more to give every Nigerians a fairly good life cycle. Nigeria is rich enough to provide these basic services and I do not think these are too much for Nigerians to ask for. I cannot get as to why we are still where we are today. It must be a curse too big for President Jonathan to wave off.
In the next part, we’ll discuss about the old horse, General Muhammadu Buhari, see you soon.
Abiola Olaifa writes from UK