It was anxious times last week at Aso Rock villa as the whistles were blown on supposed moves by unnamed persons or institutions to rubbish the image of President Muhammadu Buhari.
The spin on perceived enemies was stirred by Buhari’s Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, in a statement he authored and caused to be distributed.
Expectations on government’s next move have since gripped the nation, as many interrogate the real intentions behind the alarm raised by the presidency.
As usual, the Villa rocked with other interesting stories in the past week.
The presidency on January 29 raised the alarm about alleged plans by some individuals to embark on a smear campaign against President Buhari.
Adesina, in a statement titled, “Unrelenting plot to wage smear campaign against President Buhari,” had said: “There is compelling reason to alert the nation of another orchestrated smear campaign against President Muhammadu Buhari, using some online newspapers and blogs.
“The campaign, scheduled to be launched anytime soon through editorials and purported special investigative stories, is designed to further exacerbate tension in the land, by portraying the President as pandering to ethnic and other primordial tendencies, contrary to his pledge to belong to all Nigerians.”
The hunt for perceived enemies seems to have become an integral part of statecraft as this won’t be the first time that the Buhari presidency is crying out loud.
There’s no mistaking, though, the growing tension in the land that has pitched some of the country’s ethnic stocks against the other, especially over pastoral lands.
Without divulging names, the wailings in the presidency appear a preemptive strike to either take attention away from the critical insecurity issues or, indeed, a preparatory note to hunt down imaginary enemies.
There is no gain saying the fact that the greatest undoing of the Buhari administration is its tardiness in responding to most challenges confronting the country.
Until there is a change in attitude, it is feared that the country would continue to live through a vicious cycle of poverty and insecurity. And, as the harsh realities persist it would be unthinkable to imagine that the populace would sit idly by and celebrate mis-governance.
Mal-administration is the unseen enemy!
Two other talking points
On Service Chiefs
On January 27, President Muhammadu Buhari bowed to the pressure of appointing new Service Chiefs. The development was confirmed by Femi Adesina, his media aide.
“The new Service Chiefs are: Major-General Leo Irabor, Chief of Defence Staff; Major-General I. Attahiru, Chief of Army Staff; and Air-Vice Marshal I. O Amao, Chief of Air Staff. The President congratulates the new Service Chiefs, and urges them to be loyal and dedicated in the discharge of their responsibilities,” Adesina.
The President has acted constitutionally but the development leaves many unanswered questions relating to what may change in the direction of peace and security in the country.
As has been variously argued, a miracle may not be in the offing given the debilitating factors of insufficient fighting tools, sagging morale, sabotage and the President’s lackadaisical approach tottering around lack of urgency in actions.
Nigerians can only hope that the change in guards presents a fresh impetus in the execution of the war against insurgency and banditry.
On January 30, President Buhari accused Nigerian elites of harassing his government since he assumed office over five and half years ago. He lamented that despite the glaring successes recorded by his administration, the Nigerian elites saw nothing good in his government, but were ever ready to offer mindless criticism.
Speaking in his home town, Daura, Katsina State, while hosting some All Progressives Congress (APC) Governors, he said, “Nigerian elites are not interested in rating the competence, but they are interested in harassing us, despite all the efforts we are making.”
The Buhari administration has been a recipient of diverse criticisms, and this is not unexpected.
An essential element in the institutionalization of democratic ideals is that it demands accountability and transparency from the leadership. And, these flaks even get more ferocious if the led consider the performance of government woeful.
Undoubtable is the fact that the Buhari administration has scored low on most indices., especially the economy, security and poverty alleviation.
The quality of governance has taken its toll on Nigerians and the Buhari presidency must brace even for more ‘harassments’ unless the situation changes for the better.
By John Chukwu…
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