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Behind the reluctance to keep promises

By Matthew Agboma Ozah
20 July 2022   |   2:41 am
What part does promise play in the governance of man? Given the spate at which politicians make promises and the enthusiasm with which those who believe in such promises wait and hope endlessly to see things


What part does promise play in the governance of man? Given the spate at which politicians make promises and the enthusiasm with which those who believe in such promises wait and hope endlessly to see things come to pass as promised is quite disheartening.

The economic state of the country and the performance of President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration put side by side indicate that his best efforts in the last seven years have not been good enough to deliver the dividends of democracy to Nigerians.

Back in 2014, no Nigerian thought we would still be talking about an economy that is directionless or the ravaging insecurity challenges the country is currently witnessing. The ripple effect of these combined forces reveals an almost no future for the younger generations with the multiple troubles militating against the country from all corners. Of all these challenges bedeviling the country today, insecurity has seen terror attacks in some unlikely places such as Mosques, Churches, military barracks, prisons, railway lines among others.

The effect of kidnappings cases across the country is also very pathetic as kidnappers rein terror on citizens and this for me defines the insensitiveness of the ruling government and its lack of political will to tackle insecurity as promised. Before becoming president, Buhari did compared the preferential treatment given to the Niger Delta militants to what he regards as derogatory of the Boko Haram insurgents.

Today, the Boko Haram case has overshadowed the Niger Delta militants and is seen as a tragedy for the nation as it presents an invaluable opportunity to think about how different leaders can think and look from different vantage points over an issue.

Looking back, it is hard to conclude that Nigerians were in many ways closer to being on the right track to vote the All Progressives Congress (APC) to power in 2015. If one could pause to ponder, it might be relatively easy to grasp and question the good faith behind why political leaders are reluctant to keep promises. However, the admirable body language and vociferous strong words the ruling government is fighting the terrorists has seen the decibel readings of these terrorist attacks in the international community as it has reached almost unprecedented levels.

As the perverse language of terrorism would put it, Nigerians have now become an “honourary target” whether you are rich or poor, male or female and if one may ask, what does this mean to the Buhari administration? It is disheartening to say that short memories abound among Nigerians, but the case of the ruling government is not yet ancient history that requires anyone to consult books.

In 2014, the current presidential flag-bearer of the APC, Bola Ahmed Tinubu assured Nigerians when he said that, “…the only way to have steady electricity and fuel is to vote out former President Goodluck Jonathan. And I promise you, in six months Nigeria will be swimming in crude oil and fuel.

Buhari will pay you all five thousand naira monthly for being jobless, our youths will be gainfully employed with 3,000,000 jobs a year”. Indeed Nigerians were treated with all kinds of promises that Buhari will build a new Nigeria with bridges of hope, unity and developments across the nation.

As for El-Rufai in 2010, it is time to restructure Nigeria as he believes the present situation of things where all component units get monthly allocation from the federal government only makes the states lazy and unproductive. Regrettably, of all these promises and comments none is seen to be done, instead, the case of terrorism has become more than a tragedy for Nigerians as it exposes all Nigerians to danger and in a bad light.
However, beyond the din of condemnations of the ruling government over its poor handling of the insecurity situation, political leaders especially in the ruling party continue to pay deaf ears and behave as if all is well in the country. At the moment, a close look at the Buhari government will reveal a clear-cut case of divide and rule strategy, despite the take away from his inauguration speech where he said, “I belong to nobody, I belong to everyone”. Notwithstanding that comment, one cannot understand why the rest of the people who are not his cousins have to suffer in almost every aspect.

For instance, the appointment into ministerial positions in the country is lopsided in favour of an ethnic group and religion.

The fallout of this favouritism and the insecurity situation I must say is the sudden sharp awakening of the youth who besiege the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) registration centres across the country in their bid to equip themselves to vote out poor leadership in the forthcoming 2023 elections.

Unlike previous elections, people are not only interested they felt it is responsible of them to invest their vote for a credible and competent person. As it were, the youth have become very attached to what the outcome of the 2023 elections would reveal.

This is because, over the years, there has been a showcase of stolen election where the result is seen to register as winners incompetent people as leaders. Of course, this has caused a counter-productive situation on the nation and the people in particular. No doubt, the people felt let down, even those in the opposition, everyone felt personally betrayed and disappointed over the political leaders’ insensitiveness to the plight of the people.