Tuesday, May 20, 2008

What is new in Nigeria? Another Second Republic in the making

How come successive Nigerian government makes their inept predecessors look like professional saints?;.....Is something wrong with us?

Or are we looking at glass half full? What is going on with the madness in Abuja?
I had initially thought the vendetta madness will soon come to an end and Yaradua will get back to business....but alas they had even apologised to the guy they are trying to probe...so what is left...get on with the job!

And then the minister of Finance played the ethnic card to the hilt; citing a mindless rumour about Mallam stealing and destroying the gains of the last 8 years? As if only Mallams are making decisions for this administrations...as if only Mallams voted in their fraudulent elections.....One of my friends finally quibbed last week: Maybe Yaradua is waiting for the Supreme Court decision!

My fears is that we have seen this before, this is second republic being played out before our very eyes. Look check out all the characters in the infamous second republic, they are all stalking the land in Abuja:

Exhibit One= A docile head of government and president, who do nothing other than attend to political party meetings (then NPN, now PDP). Then Shagari, now Yarduah albeit with a little bit of education.Exhibit Two: A comatose National Assembly, more interested in acoutterments of offices and perks than passing legistlation. Check it out: Iyabo's and other honorables trip to Ghana can readily be equated with Saraki and others trip to France for the Fourgeroulle affairs.

Exhibit Three: An educated but timid vice president who is hardly seen in public making any decisions. Except for occasional hosting of traditional rulers and stakeholders coming for visits, you hardly see our current vice president address and intellectual gathering asking rigorous questions and demanding answers from the bureacrats. Compare Goodluck and Ekwueme, birds of the same feathers? It is as if they were both installed so they won't rock the boat. A mere figure head.

Exhibit Four: Installed and carefully selected federal parliamentary leaders who aligned with the oligarchical few of government. Current speaker is son of a second republic player who used party loyalty to climb the levers of power and wealth. Bankole is no different from Edwin Ume Ezeoke, except that the latter to Nigeria is unquestionable, but Bankole's loyalty is first and foremost to the Danjuma/Arewa consultative forum clique that installed in at the helms of the House.
Whilst Ezeoke could do the talk and debate issues, Bankole is also adept at that. Nigeria's problem in the early '80s is acute food shortage whilst millions of foreign currencies was being spent on Green Revolution, our current problem is power supplies. It was not that the food shortage problem went away, it is more that the press are no longer interested in reporting it. At least in the '80s we get reporters talking to Ezeoke and other, now our press waits for crumbs from PDP conventions.

Exhibits Five: An "Out of touch" Senate: who could forget the days of Wayas, Saraki and Barkin Zuwo. Unfortunately our current senate is giving the ills of that era a run for their money. With the richest Nigerian in charge of our senate, you might as well forget about democracy for the people. Our present senate president once said telephone is not for the masses, he was proved wrong! Why? Because he never knew poverty in his life and never had to campaign for votes from the masses to know what it feels to be a poor Nigerian. His was a life that started as a militrican. He owns the largest golf course in the Carribean, it was once reported that he once walked to the Vatican with over 100, 000 dollars in cash as gift for the pope after a private mass.
Where did he get his money? Not from any inheritance, not from any successfull business. Infact he had never had any job other than as public servant. He made his money as minister of communication under the infamous IBB regime. The loot he made then, is what he used to grease his way to the senate upper echelon, in an election that still remains an issue of "causa celebra".

You can readily compare David Mark to Saraki and Wayas, two people who never owned a business until they got into goverment and then smile to banks (and even owned them) whilst Nigerian dies in poverty. Our today senate like the ones in the 1980s, sees every attempt to probe then as an afront on democracy. They will remove any anti-corruption agency that stood in their way to continue the looting. Imagine the petulant way Iyabo Obasanjo justified the looting of the Ministry of health in the name of conference in Ghana. A conference, the Ghanaian goverment and press had no memory of.

Exhibit Six: The Presidency, so aloof from the suffering of Nigerians that nothing moves them. There was a report late in 1983, of President Shehu Usman Aliyu Shagari, reading and circling an article by Punch Newspapers, where Alhaji Dikko proclaimed that Nigerian are not suffering since no one is eating from the dusting bin yet. Shagari was heard to have exclaimed that "insha Allah" the press will get rid of his government.

You can imagine the mindset, his first recourse is not to summon the minister, but to blame the press for reporting a verity. In today's Aso rock, our minister of finance consider this regime a "mallam" reign. He blames the 'go-slow' stance of the government on every policies to the rumours of an attempt set back the reforms of the last 8 years. As if there was any reform in the last 8 years that did not have input from Mallam Nuhu Ribadu and Al-Rufai. It is as if the problem Nigerian are going through matters little compare to the endless probe of Obj, the Arewa Consultative forums are targetting, all in a bid to get back the oil blocks from their southwest elite counterparts.

Exhibits Seven: Democracy made in Nigeria, for PDP executives, for the benefits of PDP leaders. This is the same democracy that produced Akinloye's champagne. Everything is being done in Abuja to "purportedly right the wrong." i.e Pay back Ahmadu Alli's millions of Naira for property built illegally, even whilst many other Nigerian whose houses were destroyed are left to live as tenants. The intent of this regime is to settle, settle and settle everyone with grievance. If you are a Danjuma that lost a prized Oil blocks, you will get something more than that back in return as long as you have party executives installed in PDP that will do your biddings.

Here is the saddest part of it all, no quality opposition party in Nigeria today. In the Second republic, at least you can count on the likes of Aminu Kano, Chief Obafemi Awolowo, Dr. Azikiwe to speak up. Today, the so called CNPP-Conference of Nigeria Political Party, exist only on the pages of newspapers. They are reactive, rather than pro-active. Their stated goal is to get rid of Obasanjo and once baba-cracy leaves they ran out of ideas. They themselves are mired in "settlement" Compare the readiness of Azikiwe's NPP to accept to serve in NPN goverment without any preconditions, to the same readiness exhibited by some sections of ANPP, who could not even wait for the Court of Appeal decisions before they threw their candidate (Buhari) under the bus, so they could share in the loot going on in aso rock.

We are indeed in deep dodo...read more on my blog

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