by Oche Otorkpa
It was Joseph B. Wirthlin who said, “Honesty is of God and dishonesty of the devil; the devil was a liar from the beginning.
The quote above sums up the the attempt by a Presidential media Aide Mallam Garba Shehu to further deceive Nigerians into believing anything meaningful had taken place in the last 100 days.
Like Steven Covey puts it, the more people rationalize cheating, the more it becomes a culture of dishonesty. And that can become a vicious, downward cycle. Because suddenly, if everyone else is cheating, you feel a need to cheat, too.
It very regrettable that the same people who told Nigerians that they will generate 20,000 Megawatts of electricity in four years are turning around to not only disown the promise as a road map, but are now claiming they knew nothing about the contract document that almost certainly brought them into office.
Before the presidential elections , Buhari and APC had accused their opponents severally of not declaring their assets publicly, and went on to pledge that not only will their presidential candidate declare his assets publicly he will encourage his appointees to do so as a “pre- condition” for their appointment into office.
Buhari and “Pastor” Osinbajo till date are yet to fulfill this simple promise they made to Nigerians. Even the new NNPC boss, Kachikwu, who attempted to make his declaration public was quickly whipped into line by his boss in Aso Rock.
The claim by another presidential spokesman, Femi Adeshina that the promise to declare assets publicly was made by the APC and not General Buhari clearly shows that he lacks the mental capacity to do the job he was employed to do, because if he does, he would have come to the conclusion that under the Electoral Act 2011 as amended there is no provision for independent candidacy.
On Boko Haram, Nigerians do not need to peruse any document, General Buhari himself promised to end the Boko Haram insurgency within two months if elected President. Though he had 8 weeks to fine-tune his strategy he has so far failed to deliver 14 weeks after coming to office. Within Buhari’s 100 days in office over 2,000 innocent Nigerians have perished in the hands of Boko Haram insurgents.
Under the former administration, APC members and sympathisers shamefully celebrated every attack and loss of life on social media “showering” insults at will on our soldiers. Despite the huge sacrifices our brothers and sisters in the armed forces were making Mallam Nasiru El- Rufai and his clan led an onslaught against them and their families describing them as “Jonathanian” unfortunately, these are the same men and women they are now pleading with to save them from disgrace and embarrassment.
Rather than hiding under some mischievous excuse the President and his team must accept the fact that they have failed to deliver on this promise.
Running a government on “body language” when citizens are neither deaf or dumb is a style that is alien to virtually all Nigerians, the country does not need a leader that hardly ever communicates with citizens or a leader who goes into hibernation at the slightest opportunity.
The last kingdom to be ruled using “body language” was probably the Manyakhetas of India who were ruled by the Rashtrakutan Dynasty from 753 -982 AD. it is therefore out of place for Shehu to subject citizens in the 21st century to “body language” lectures instead of telling them what the government has done in plain language.
The recent revelation by the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission, that the improvement in electricity was as a result of earlier steps taken by the Jonathan administration has rubbished the false claims of Shehu and the APC that Buhari’s body language was responsible for the improvement in power supply.
On relations with our neighbour’s one must not fail to state the fact that when the then president of Nigeria sought co-operation from our neighbour’s in the fight against insurgents the APC and General Buhari himself described the action as a big disgrace while Mallam Nasiru El-Rufai described Jonathan’s visit to Chad’s as a “meeting to strategise on how to plan more attacks on citizens”.
Interestingly, the first country General Buhari visited on assumption of office was Chad where he sought the assistance and co-operation of that country in the fight against insurgents like Jonathan before him.
These is the kind of hypocrisy and deception that must be condemned by all those who wish this nation well.
Rice importation or production has nothing to do with the Buhari Administration as falsely claimed by Shehu in his article. The agricultural strides of Nigeria under the leadership of the former Agriculture minister, now African Development Bank chief, Dr. Adesina is widely celebrated and documented despite attempts by the APC and their cohorts to rubbish it. Even an illiterate farmer knows that it takes an average of 4 months to plant and harvest the best variety of rice. Buhari has been in office for three months, he hasn’t charted a single policy issue on agriculture, or anything else for that matter.
These desperate attempt to appropriate another man’s achievements is part of the corruption that Nigeria must eradicate.
Although, I am from the North I do not support the systematic emasculation of other sections of the country as presently being practiced by the Buhari administration neither am I in support of the gradual decapitation of INEC and all the ingredients that makes it independent as seen in Buhari’s appointment of his relative, Amina Zakari, as the chairman of the electoral body.
As Nigerians we must be objective, people like Shehu must see beyond their next pay slip, while all those who chanted change must see beyond party sentiments, ethnic or religious affiliation and stand for the truth even when it hurts.
May God continue to Bless Nigeria and Nigerians.
Oche Joseph Otorkpa is publisher of Tsuntsu Hausa Newspaper, Abuja. He can be reached by email.
The opinions expressed in this article are solely those of the author.