The sense I get is that no one briefs Mr. Buhari before his numerous outings. It is also clear that he needs serious education about Nigeria in the 21st century. He is stuck in the past and proud of it. This man is hurting our nation. The words that come out of Buhari’s mouth are beyond embarrassing, he has become a national security risk. Someone stop him.
The latest gaffe from him suggesting that Nigerians abroad are criminals and ne’er do wells is deeply troubling. Nothing could be further than the truth. We can talk about the racism that says that only “perfect” immigrants of color are allowed on the hallowed shores of the West. We can also point out that even with all the noise about Nigerian criminality in the West, the percentage of Nigerian fraudsters compared to the population of Nigerians abroad is approximately zero percent. You must not judge the rest with the worst.
Buhari is out of line here and deeply ignorant of the situation. Let me put it this way, if all the Nigerians in the medical fields of the U.K. and North America were to down their tools and head back to Nigeria, the trauma on the communities over there would be incalculable. The vast majority of Nigerians abroad are law-abiding citizens, lauded for their work ethic and their talents. Buhari should be begging them to return home to contribute their quota.
If the Nigerians abroad are talented those at home are gifted. It takes genius to run any business in Nigeria, and millions do it every day. In all fields. Some of the best doctors in the world I met in broken hospital halls in Nigeria. Sadly, many of them are successfully plotting their way to the West. And the West will welcome them with open arms.
Our real problem is leadership; since 1960 to date our rulers have excelled in looting is dry and Buhari has been part of the looting, thuggery and incompetence. It is estimated that of the $600 billion in oil revenue since 1956, $400 billion has been looted by our politicians and civil servants. Nigerians in the private sector have been thriving in the absence of structures. The government is in the way every day. Buhari knows his thieves; they booted him to power. He should leave us alone.
Buhari has no business scaring away tourism and business by constantly running down Nigeria before the eyes of the West. He should shut up, if he cannot improve upon the silence.
Ikhide Ikheloa is a writer and literary critic. He is one of The Trent’s Elite Bloggers. He tweets from @ikhide.
The opinions expressed in this article are solely those of the author.