Day: January 23, 2018

Obasanjo Calls For Buhari’s Retirement

 

Former Nigerian President Olusegun Obasanjo has asked President Muhammadu Buhari to step down after the expiration of his current term in office.

In a special press statement released by the former President on Tuesday, the retired general condemned those calling on President Buhari to go for a second term in 2019. He urged Buhari to honourably dismount from the horse and join other Nigerian leaders whose wealth of experience, influence, wisdom and outreach can be deployed on the sideline for the good of the country.

”President Buhari needs a dignified and honourable dismount from the horse. He needs to have time to reflect, refurbish physically and recoup and after appropriate rest, once again, join the stock of Nigerian leaders whose experience, influence, wisdom and outreach can be deployed on the side line for the good of the country. His place in history is already assured. Without impaired health and strain of age, running the affairs of Nigeria is a 25/7 affair, not 24/7,” Obasanjo stated.

 

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Buhari must step down – Obasanjo

Obasanjo who recently bagged a PhD from the National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN) called for the formation of a coalition for a Nigerian movement that will drive Nigeria up and forward.

”This Coalition for Nigeria will be a Movement that will drive Nigeria up and forward. It must have a pride of place for all Nigerians, particularly for our youth and our women. It is a coalition of hope for all Nigerians for speedy, quality and equal development, security, unity, prosperity and progress. It is a coalition to banish poverty, insecurity and despair. Our country must not be oblivious to concomitant danger around, outside and ahead. Coalition for Nigeria must be a Movement to break new ground in building a united country, a socially-cohesive and moderately prosperous society with equity, equality of opportunity, justice and a dynamic and progressive economy that is self-reliant and takes active part in global division of labour and international decision-making.

”The Movement must work out the path of development and the trajectory of development in speed, quality and equality in the short- medium- and long-term for Nigeria on the basis of sustainability, stability, predictability, credibility, security, cooperation and prosperity with diminishing inequality. What is called for is love, commitment and interest in our country, not in self, friends and kinship alone but particularly love, compassion and interest in the poor, underprivileged and downtrodden. It is our human duty and responsibility so to do. Failure to do this will amount to a sin against God and a crime against humanity,” Obasanjo stated.

Read Obasanjo’s full statement here:

THE WAY OUT: A CLARION CALL FOR COALITION FOR NIGERIA MOVEMENT
Special Press Statement
By
​President Olusegun Obasanjo​
—————————— —————————— —————————— —-
Since we are still in the month of January, it is appropriate to wish all Nigerians Happy 2018. I am constrained to issue this special statement at this time considering the situation of the country. Some of you may be asking, “What has brought about this special occasion of Obasanjo issuing a Special Statement?” You will be right to ask such a question. But there is a Yoruba saying that ‘when lice abound in your clothes, your fingernails will never be dried of blood’. When I was in the village, to make sure that lice die, you put them between two fingernails and press hard to ensure they die and they always leave blood stains on the fingernails. To ensure you do not have blood on your fingernails, you have to ensure that lice are not harboured anywhere within your vicinity.

The lice of poor performance in government – poverty, insecurity, poor economic management, nepotism, gross dereliction of duty, condonation of misdeed – if not outright encouragement of it, lack of progress and hope for the future, lack of national cohesion and poor management of internal political dynamics and widening inequality – are very much with us today. With such lice of general and specific poor performance and crying poverty with us, our fingers will not be dry of ‘blood’.

Four years ago when my PDP card was torn, I made it abundantly clear that I quit partisan politics for aye but my concern and interest in Nigeria, Africa and indeed in humanity would not wane. Ever since, I have adhered strictly to that position. Since that time, I have devoted quality time to the issue of zero hunger as contained in Goal No. 2 of the Sustainable Development Goals of the UN. We have set the target that Nigeria with the participating States in the Zero Hunger Forum should reach Zero Hunger goal by 2025 – five years earlier than the UN target date. I am involved in the issue of education in some States and generally in the issue of youth empowerment and employment. I am involved in all these domestically and altruistically to give hope and future to the seemingly hopeless and those in despair. I believe strongly that God has endowed Nigeria so adequately that no Nigerian should be either in want or in despair.

I believe in team work and collaborative efforts. At the international level, we have worked with other world leaders to domicile the apparatus for monitoring and encouraging socio-economic progress in Africa in our Presidential Library. The purpose of Africa Progress Group, which is the new name assumed by Africa Progress Panel (APP), is to point out where, when and what works need to be done for the progress of Africa separately and collectively by African leaders and their development partners. I have also gladly accepted the invitation of the UN Secretary-General to be a member of his eighteen-member High-Level Board of Advisers on Mediation. There are other assignments I take up in other fora for Africa and for the international community. For Africa to move forward, Nigeria must be one of the anchor countries, if not the leading anchor country. It means that Nigeria must be good at home to be good outside. No doubt, our situation in the last decade or so had shown that we are not good enough at home; hence we are invariably absent at the table that we should be abroad.

All these led me to take the unusual step of going against my own political Party, PDP, in the last general election to support the opposite side. I saw that action as the best option for Nigeria. As it has been revealed in the last three years or so, that decision and the subsequent collective decision of Nigerians to vote for a change was the right decision for the nation. For me, there was nothing personal, it was all in the best interest of Nigeria and, indeed, in the best interest of Africa and humanity at large. Even the horse rider then, with whom I maintain very cordial, happy and social relationship today has come to realise his mistakes and regretted it publicly and I admire his courage and forthrightness in this regard. He has a role to play on the side line for the good of Nigeria, Africa and humanity and I will see him as a partner in playing such a role nationally and internationally, but not as a horse rider in Nigeria again.

The situation that made Nigerians to vote massively to get my brother Jonathan off the horse is playing itself out again. First, I thought I knew the point where President Buhari is weak and I spoke and wrote about it even before Nigerians voted for him and I also did vote for him because at that time it was a matter of “any option but Jonathan” (aobj). But my letter to President Jonathan titled: “Before It Is Too Late” was meant for him to act before it was too late. He ignored it and it was too late for him and those who goaded him into ignoring the voice of caution. I know that praise-singers and hired attackers may be raised up against me for verbal or even physical attack but if I can withstand undeserved imprisonment and was ready to shed my blood by standing for Nigeria, I will consider no sacrifice too great to make for the good of Nigeria at any time. No human leader is expected to be personally strong or self-sufficient in all aspects of governance.

I knew President Buhari before he became President and said that he is weak in the knowledge and understanding of the economy but I thought that he could make use of good Nigerians in that area that could help. Although, I know that you cannot give what you don’t have and that economy does not obey military order. You have to give it what it takes in the short-, medium- and long-term. Then, it would move. I know his weakness in understanding and playing in the foreign affairs sector and again, there are many Nigerians that could be used in that area as well. They have knowledge and experience that could be deployed for the good of Nigeria. There were serious allegations of round-tripping against some inner caucus of the Presidency which would seem to have been condoned. I wonder if such actions do not amount to corruption and financial crime, then what is it? Culture of condonation and turning blind eye will cover up rather than clean up. And going to justice must be with clean hands.

I thought President Buhari would fight corruption and insurgency and he must be given some credit for his achievement so far in these two areas although it is not yet uhuru!

The herdsmen/crop farmers issue is being wittingly or unwittingly allowed to turn sour and messy. It is no credit to the Federal Government that the herdsmen rampage continues with careless abandon and without finding an effective solution to it. And it is a sad symptom of insensitivity and callousness that some Governors, a day after 73 victims were being buried in a mass grave in Benue State without condolence, were jubilantly endorsing President Buhari for a second term! The timing was most unfortunate. The issue of herdsmen/crop farmers dichotomy should not be left on the political platform of blame game; the Federal Government must take the lead in bringing about solution that protects life and properties of herdsmen and crop farmers alike and for them to live amicably in the same community.

But there are three other areas where President Buhari has come out more glaringly than most of us thought we knew about him. One is nepotic deployment bordering on clannishness and inability to bring discipline to bear on errant members of his nepotic court. This has grave consequences on performance of his government to the detriment of the nation. It would appear that national interest was being sacrificed on the altar of nepotic interest. What does one make of a case like that of Maina: collusion, condonation, ineptitude, incompetence, dereliction of responsibility or kinship and friendship on the part of those who should have taken visible and deterrent disciplinary action? How many similar cases are buried, ignored or covered up and not yet in the glare of the media and the public? The second is his poor understanding of the dynamics of internal politics. This has led to wittingly or unwittingly making the nation more divided and inequality has widened and become more pronounced. It also has effect on general national security. The third is passing the buck. For instance, blaming the Governor of the Central Bank for devaluation of the naira by 70% or so and blaming past governments for it, is to say the least, not accepting one’s own responsibility. Let nobody deceive us, economy feeds on politics and because our politics is depressing, our economy is even more depressing today. If things were good, President Buhari would not need to come in. He was voted to fix things that were bad and not engage in the blame game. Our Constitution is very clear, one of the cardinal responsibilities of the President is the management of the economy of which the value of the naira forms an integral part. Kinship and friendship that place responsibility for governance in the hands of the unelected can only be deleterious to good government and to the nation.

President Buhari’s illness called for the sympathy, understanding, prayer and patience from every sane Nigerian. It is part of our culture. Most Nigerians prayed for him while he was away sick in London for over hundred days and he gave his Deputy sufficient leeway to carry on in his absence. We all thanked God for President Buhari for coming back reasonably hale and hearty and progressing well in his recovery. But whatever may be the state of President Buhari’s health today, he should neither over-push his luck nor over-tax the patience and tolerance of Nigerians for him, no matter what his self-serving, so-called advisers, who would claim that they love him more than God loves him and that without him, there would be no Nigeria say. President Buhari needs a dignified and honourable dismount from the horse. He needs to have time to reflect, refurbish physically and recoup and after appropriate rest, once again, join the stock of Nigerian leaders whose experience, influence, wisdom and outreach can be deployed on the side line for the good of the country. His place in history is already assured. Without impaired health and strain of age, running the affairs of Nigeria is a 25/7 affair, not 24/7.

I only appeal to brother Buhari to consider a deserved rest at this point in time and at this age. I continue to wish him robust health to enjoy his retirement from active public service. President Buhari does not necessarily need to heed my advice. But whether or not he heeds it, Nigeria needs to move on and move forward.

I have had occasion in the past to say that the two main political parties – APC and PDP – were wobbling. I must reiterate that nothing has happened to convince me otherwise. If anything, I am reinforced in my conviction. The recent show of PDP must give grave and great concern to lovers of Nigeria. To claim, as has been credited to the chief kingmaker of PDP, that for procuring the Supreme Court judgement for his faction of the Party, he must dictate the tune all the way and this is indeed fraught with danger. If neither APC nor PDP is a worthy horse to ride to lead Nigeria at this crucial and critical time, what then do we do? Remember Farooq Kperogi, an Associate Professor at the Kennesaw State University, Georgia, United States, calls it “a cruel Hobson’s choice; it’s like a choice between six and half a dozen, between evil and evil. Any selection or deflection would be a distinction without a difference.” We cannot just sit down lamenting and wringing our hands desperately and hopelessly.

I believe the situation we are in today is akin to what and where we were in at the beginning of this democratic dispensation in 1999. The nation was tottering. People became hopeless and saw no bright future in the horizon. It was all a dark cloud politically, economically and socially. The price of oil at that time was nine dollars per barrel and we had a debt overhang of about $35 billion. Most people were confused with lack of direction in the country. One of the factors that saved the situation was a near government of national unity that was put in place to navigate us through the dark cloud. We had almost all hands on deck. We used people at home and from the diaspora and we navigated through the dark cloud of those days. At that time, most people were hopelessly groping in the dark. They saw no choice, neither in the left nor in the right, and yet we were not bereft of people at home and from the diaspora that could come together to make Nigeria truly a land flowing with milk and honey. Where we are is a matter of choice but we can choose differently to make a necessary and desirable change, once again.

Wherever I go, I hear Nigerians complaining, murmuring in anguish and anger. But our anger should not be like the anger of the cripple. We can collectively save ourselves from the position we find ourselves. It will not come through self-pity, fruitless complaint or protest but through constructive and positive engagement and collective action for the good of our nation and ourselves and our children and their children. We need moral re-armament and engaging togetherness of people of like-mind and goodwill to come solidly together to lift Nigeria up. This is no time for trading blames or embarking on futile argument and neither should we accept untenable excuses for non-performance. Let us accept that the present administration has done what it can do to the limit of its ability, aptitude and understanding. Let the administration and its political party platform agree with the rest of us that what they have done and what they are capable of doing is not good enough for us. They have given as best as they have and as best as they can give. Nigeria deserves and urgently needs better than what they have given or what we know they are capable of giving. To ask them to give more will be unrealistic and will only sentence Nigeria to a prison term of four years if not destroy it beyond the possibility of an early recovery and substantial growth. Einstein made it clear to us that doing the same thing and expecting a different result is the height of folly. Already, Nigerians are committing suicide for the unbearable socio-economic situation they find themselves in. And yet Nigerians love life. We must not continue to reinforce failure and hope that all will be well. It is self-deceit and self-defeat and another aspect of folly.

What has emerged from the opposition has shown no better promise from their antecedents. As the leader of that Party for eight years as President of Nigeria, I can categorically say there is nothing to write home about in their new team. We have only one choice left to take us out of Egypt to the promised land. And that is the coalition of the concerned and the willing – ready for positive and drastic change, progress and involvement. Change that will give hope and future to all our youth and dignity and full participation to all our women. Our youth should be empowered to deploy their ability to learn, innovate and work energetically at ideas and concepts in which they can make their own original inputs. Youth must be part of the action today and not relegated to leadership of tomorrow which may never come. Change that will mean enhancement of living standard and progress for all. A situation where the elected will accountably govern and every Nigerian will have equal opportunity not based on kinship and friendship but based on free citizenship.

Democracy is sustained and measured not by leaders doing extra-ordinary things, (invariably, leaders fail to do ordinary things very well), but by citizens rising up to do ordinary things extra-ordinarily well. Our democracy, development and progress at this juncture require ordinary citizens of Nigeria to do the extra-ordinary things of changing the course and direction of our lackluster performance and development. If leadership fails, citizens must not fail and there lies the beauty and importance of democracy. We are challenged by the current situation; we must neither adopt spirit of cowardice nor timidity let alone impotence but must be sustained by courage, determination and commitment to say and do and to persist until we achieve upliftment for Nigeria. Nothing ventured, nothing gained and we believe that our venturing will not be in vain. God of Nigeria has endowed this country adequately and our non-performance cannot be blamed on God but on leadership. God, who has given us what we need and which is potentially there, will give us leadership enablement to actualize our potentiality.

The development and modernization of our country and society must be anchored and sustained on dynamic Nigerian culture, enduring values and an enchanting Nigerian dream. We must have abiding faith in our country and its role and place within the comity of nations. Today, Nigeria needs all hands on deck. All hands of men and women of goodwill must be on deck. We need all hands to move our country forward.

We need a Coalition for Nigeria, CN. Such a Movement at this juncture needs not be a political party but one to which all well-meaning Nigerians can belong. That Movement must be a coalition for democracy, good governance, social and economic well-being and progress. Coalition to salvage and redeem our country. You can count me with such a Movement. Last time, we asked, prayed and worked for change and God granted our request. This time, we must ask, pray and work for change with unity, security and progress. And God will again grant us. Of course, nothing should stop such a Movement from satisfying conditions for fielding candidates for elections. But if at any stage the Movement wishes to metamorphose into candidate-sponsoring Movement for elections, I will bow out of the Movement because I will continue to maintain my non-partisan position. Coalition for Nigeria must have its headquarters in Abuja.

This Coalition for Nigeria will be a Movement that will drive Nigeria up and forward. It must have a pride of place for all Nigerians, particularly for our youth and our women. It is a coalition of hope for all Nigerians for speedy, quality and equal development, security, unity, prosperity and progress. It is a coalition to banish poverty, insecurity and despair. Our country must not be oblivious to concomitant danger around, outside and ahead. Coalition for Nigeria must be a Movement to break new ground in building a united country, a socially-cohesive and moderately prosperous society with equity, equality of opportunity, justice and a dynamic and progressive economy that is self-reliant and takes active part in global division of labour and international decision-making.

The Movement must work out the path of development and the trajectory of development in speed, quality and equality in the short- medium- and long-term for Nigeria on the basis of sustainability, stability, predictability, credibility, security, cooperation and prosperity with diminishing inequality. What is called for is love, commitment and interest in our country, not in self, friends and kinship alone but particularly love, compassion and interest in the poor, underprivileged and downtrodden. It is our human duty and responsibility so to do. Failure to do this will amount to a sin against God and a crime against humanity.

Some may ask, what does Obasanjo want again? Obasanjo has wanted nothing other than the best for Nigeria and Nigerians and he will continue to want nothing less. And if we have the best, we will be contented whether where we live is described as palaces or huts by others and we will always give thanks to God.

I, therefore, will gladly join such a Movement when one is established as Coalition for Nigeria, CN, taking Nigeria to the height God has created it to be. From now on, the Nigeria eagle must continue to soar and fly high. CN, as a Movement, will be new, green, transparent and must remain clean and always active, selflessly so. Members must be ready to make sacrifice for the nation and pay the price of being pioneers and good Nigerians for our country to play the God-assigned role for itself, for its neighbours, for its sub-region of West Africa, for its continent and for humanity in general. For me, the strength and sustainable success of CN will derive largely from the strong commitment of a population that is constantly mobilized to the rallying platform of the fact that going forward together is our best option for building a nation that will occupy its deserved place in the global community. May God continue to lead, guide and protect us. Amen.

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Leadership Should Be A Calling – Not An Enterprise

POLITICS and the genuine desire to lead should be a passion developed from earlier on in a person’s life from school, college or university…and not suddenly entered into as a final status enhancing and wealth acquisition bid later in life after failing in other careers and professions

Many past UK leaders are alumnus of top leadership training institutions such as Eton and Harrow; and of pedigree universities such as Oxford. Elitist, yes, but students were trained and prepared for a life of leadership from quite young ages. They mostly all started in politics right from school as student activists and student union leaders.

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Etonian Prime Ministers (l – r): Anthony Eden (1955-1957), Harold Macmillan (1957-1963), David Cameron (2010-2016), Alec Douglas Home (1963-1964)

Many of the UK lawmakers also started from grassroots levels serving the local community in various capacities and working as foot soldiers in their respective party wards – getting to learn and understand the ethos of service and leadership; familiarizing themselves with the locals, understanding their communities and constituents and getting to know their various needs.

But the average Nigerian politician, many of them, products of Nigeria’s failing education system, sees politics and leadership as a career change after having worked as a medical doctor, accountant, teacher, cab man, security officer or photographer in the Diaspora.

Without having in any way or on any level been involved in local politics, a car wash attendant in London will suddenly sell up, cash in his savings and credit card balance and get on the plane to Nigeria and before you can say Murtala Mohammad Airport you are seeing them on flyers and posters asking for your support as a candidate for a senatorial or gubernatorial bid!!!!!!

A major part of the problems we have with political governance in Nigeria is that many who venture into it see it primarily as a wealth acquisition enterprise rather than a call to service. They are enticed by the upgraded status to “Honourable senator” or “His Excellency”; the huge mouth-watering salaries, the sycophantic entourage that follows them about and all the other privileges that come with their office – and very little or nothing whatsoever about genuinely caring about the welfare of the people they are meant to serve.

Many Nigerians who (somehow) get elected into positions of power have absolutely no clue of exactly what they are expected to do. Many in the chambers have never in their entire lives given a public speech and lack the most basic skills. Watching the videos of some of them just makes one want to cry!!

 

It is an absolutely ridiculous idea to place people with very little or even no education or intelligence in positions of power where they are meant to be drivers of national policy making processes, or national lawmakers as they are more commonly known. How can someone who cannot string a single intelligible sentence together interpret the constitution?

How can someone who makes a speech that is, heavily laden not only with serious grammatical and syntax errors, but is also an unclear, meaningless, incomprehensible, indecipherable rant, present meaningful arguments that are meant to represent the case of his constituents or seek the betterment of his own people?

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People who are poorly equipped, poorly educated and lowly in intelligence should never be trusted with the heart of any nation. This is the reason why Nigeria and many similar nations are in the quandary there find themselves today. Being led and governed by men and women with inadequate literacy or culture, meagre exposure to civilisation and  unrefined minds is the main bane of Nigeria.

Yet these educated morons who form not a small part of our lawmaking chambers gleefully claim their high unmerited salaries and often ridiculously high allowances (wardrobe, hardship, newspaper etc)

 


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The salaries of many of these misfits in 1 year can pay the salaries of 100 civil servants. And what they claim for newspapers can feed an entire village.

The salaries of most of these (dis)honourables unbelievably top the salary of the President of the United States of the United Kingdom’s Prime Minister!!!

The huge “rewards of democracy” for Nigerian politicians will undoubtedly be the reason why many flock to politics and many of them will do whatever and anything it takes to ensure the realisation of their political ambitions including getting rid of anyone standing in their way. Many of them employ the services of impressionable poverty ridden local youth or louts to deal with or even do away with their opponents or rivals. Others sell of family heirlooms and properties to fund their ambitions.

 

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Assassinations and abductions linked to political rivalries are not uncommon and then there is the high unashamed bribery and payment of voters sometimes in full view of law enforcement officers at polling centres. Only in Nigeria are voters queuing to vote  handed cash and gift incentives to vote for a particular candidate!

 

But on eventually managing to bribe and corrupt their way into the corridors of power, what do our lawmakers actually do? Many bills especially those that will not directly favour the lawmakers themselves, are kicked up, down and around the houses till they are almost forgotten about. However those that will have impact on them and their wallets and balances are those given high priority.

One must not forget one bill these lot have successfully swiftly passed in the past 2 years is lowering the marriage age to 13! An official bill in favour of peadophilia!!! Only in Nigeria!!! Perhaps because many of them has a great fondness for underage brides and little girls!

A great part of 1 year was spent deliberating their entitlements and rights while the rest of the country wallowed in poverty brought about by unpaid salaries, pensions and wages.

Many so called Nigerian Senators started off as impoverished ordinary men with failed careers and professions or disillusioned diasporans struggling for relevance. But within years of successfully obtaining the party ticket and unbelievable, yet clear elections into the Government House or Senate House – have suddenly become overnight billionaires (millionaires in Nigeria are now the poor relations).

I must quickly add that I do not see political aspirations or ambitions as undesirable or even wrong. However, what people must not forget that they are there first, foremost  and primarily to serve the people and protect their rights and welfare and cater to their needs. Public service, whatever it’s rewards, must put the needs of the people first and above personal gain and self elevation.

 

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Nigerian Senate House

But looking at Nigerian leaders and lawmakers, the reverse is the case.

In the US and the UK, you will find people who entered into politics primarily because they have a humanitarian issue that needs to be brought to the very centre of policy making. And on getting through the doors, they make the issue their lifetime issue throughout their tenure (eg environment, health, human rights etc)

But you will be hardly pressed to find a single Nigerian politician who has a personal area of interest that they make their “baby” or a project that they bring to the house with a view to enforcing changes to policies,  that have direct bearing on issues affecting their constituents. For example, has any Nigerian lawmaker ever brought to any of the Houses, a bill to protect the rights of tenants?  Many tenants pay exorbitant fees for shabby properties that have no running water or constant electricity supply. But in the UK, these are all rights that tenants are fully entitled to. But no Nigerian lawmaker has seen it fit to introduce bills that will give way to laws that ensure landlords provide these basic amenities for their tenants with failing landlords facing huge penalties and fines.

In developed countries, established lawmakers will willingly and honourably stand down and resign at the slightest whiff of a health related issue, family problems or even scandals and allegations of wrongdoings.

But their Nigerian counterparts will refuse to bulge, be bulged or even moved – regardless of the scale of their ill health or scandal.

Nigeria’s current President Buhari spent a huge part of 2017 on medical leave in the United Kingdom. Many called for his resignation due to his protracted absence from office and others questioned why a country’s leader saw it fit to spend such a long period of time receiving treatment from an undisclosed illness outside of the country.  The calls for him to step down went largely ignored and the questions unanswered. But while Nigerians have chosen to forgive him for abandoning the country for well over 6 months, President Buhari is reportedly considering to run a second term in office and not surprisingly, many Nigerians are seriously opposed to this.

Nigerians including most of those who supported his candidacy for president are grossly disillusioned in Buhari and have lost their confidence in him. The general consensus is for him to peacefully retire after his time in office and make way for a younger more fit and able candidate.  Outrageously, we had many politicians including state governors from his party, blatantly ignoring the wishes of the people and rallying round to call for the president to go for a second term!

In a civilized scenario, he would do the decent thing and step down on concluding his current tenure. The party stalwarts will take citizens opinion into account and elect to drop the candidate rather than risk losing the election and the concerned candidate will not want any of their actions to reflect badly on their party or affect their constituency.

But in Nigeria, our leaders are selfish, self involved, self absorbed and self interested.

Their sole desire for being in politics and leadership is not for what they can do for their country, its citizens or even their own party. It is all for them, about what they can get out of the system and how the system can benefit them. That is why you see them jumping like prostitutes, from the bed of one political party to another as soon as things stop working for them or according to their specific or personal agenda.

Many current Nigerian leaders, most specifically the Senate President Bukonla Saraki, have had their tenures dogged by legal issues, court cases and series of allegations of corruption. But rather than do the honourable thing and resign his post to face his legal issues, he has held on tightly and refused all calls to step down. He, with the alarming support of his fellow senators, many of whom took the unbelievable effrontery and audacity to leave their posts and accompany him on one of his court appearances, has continued in his role as Senate president while at the same time attending court and sitting in the dock as defendant on serious corruption charges.

And let’s also not forget those that see their position of power as a weapon to intimidate, cheat and bully those who are “below” them. Nowadays, we see Governors, Assembly men, Ministers, Senators and even Nigerian politicians in the Diaspora quickly resorting to legal action at the slightest provocation. In a particular case, a councillor took legal action for a post on facebook even though in no way whatsoever did the post refer to them!

This will never happen in a civilized world.

Holding on when calls are made for you to step down should never happen

Stepping into the race when you are ill or poorly equipped for the job should never happen

Going in for the sole purpose of making money and not to impact lives should never happen

There are many Nigerians with the right background, the right training, the right pedigree and the right motives who can do the job. Perhaps, even better. The time has come to make way for them.

No one should see the job of leadership as a lifetime occupation. Or as a means to self enrichment.

Leadership is about motivating others and encouraging them to fulfilling their own potentials.

Leadership is about carrying others along, not leaving them behind.

Leadership is a calling. Not a profession.

Leadership is never a right – it is a priviledge.

BJ