OpinionOPINION: President Tinubu, Nigeria Is Not Working!

OPINION: President Tinubu, Nigeria Is Not Working!

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February 27, (THEWILL) – It is crystal clear Nigeria is not working. The blind, deaf and sick can say it loud that the country is at a standstill. No doubt, President Tinubu is not the cause of the socio-economic problems we are all going through yet, he cannot extricate himself from being part of the problem. Now that he has the ‘knife and yam,’ every blame stops at his table. Nigeria is presently witnessing a tale of arrested development and regression. There is nothing showing any significant improvement in our human and economic development. It is all abysmal failure and backwardness. Nigeria is in a case of ‘sorrows, tears and blood.’ A very sad and disappointing story. Nigeria, with our natural, economic and intellectual resources is still rated as one of the poorest countries in the world. The painful part of Nigeria’s story is that every successful administration pulls us back more than its predecessor. None has achieved a greater height. What is wrong with our leaders? Where did they emanate from?

It’s not a funny story at all. We need to get the country out of the deep gully it has found itself. The underdevelopment, mismanagement, embezzlement, looting, insecurity, destruction of infrastructures, and the multiplying effects of corruption. It is so deep. Nigeria is on its knees!

It is a fact that Nigeria records more hours of power outages in Africa. And, it is getting worse by the day. Power is an essential energizer of development. There cannot be development in the midst of darkness. There has to be power to pump life into the economy. There is no industry or small business still existing in the country without its own power supply. That is basically for them to remain in business. Nigeria can end its power problem in a maximum of two years. Ghana ended theirs in a year, why can’t we? It is all about leadership determination. The leadership must pick a special interest and declare a state of EMERGENCY in the power sector. If the current Governor of Abia state, Governor Alex Otti, is working round the clock to stabilize the power supply in the commercial city of Aba, then the Federal Government must feel challenged and begin to do something to stabilize power in the country. It is not rocket science, they say.

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To achieve a steady power supply in Nigeria, the following can help:

a. Importation of generator sets should be banned and strict laws made for adherence. Ghana, Senegal and some other African countries have constant power supply, Nigeria can!

b. Stop every government-owned institution, including the Villa, and NASS, with the exception of hospitals from running on generator sets.

c. No senior government official will be allowed to use a generator set at home.

d. No person or group, especially the engineering firms working with the Federal Government, will be given any contract when they run on a generator set.

e. The party secretariat of the government in power must not use a generator set in their offices.

f. Let the Federal Government not host any international event except if the venue will be powered by EDC.

All these and more should be employed to encourage all hands on deck. For power supply to be permanent in Nigeria, a radical approach must be taken.

The Federal, State and Local governments must have farm lands that are in operation. The farms should be turning out farm produce yearly. Nigeria cannot be economically viable without farming in large quantities. The country must be returned back to the era where agriculture was a priority. The security of farmers must be guaranteed. The military and local hunters should be drafted into the forests for the adequate security of farmers. The government should support and encourage farmers with modern technology to improve their produce.

Corruption must not be handled with kid gloves. Nigeria is known as one of the most corrupt countries in the world. We are rated as a ‘fantastically corrupt’ country. The anti-corruption fight began by former President Olusegun Obasanjo has actually declined. And, Nigeria cannot move forward when we romance with corruption. The war against corruption must be total. There must not be VIP treatment for some. To make the corruption war successful, the untouchables in the society must be touched. In the days of Nuhu Ribadu as the chair of EFCC, very important men and women were brought to book. However, he failed to arraign President Bola Ahmed Tinubu then, after declaring him guilty of corruption.

The President can pick, concentrate and make it his priority for a particular refinery owned by the Federal Government to work. Let him assemble petroleum engineers, not politicians, to get the refineries to work. It is a big shame for a country with crude oil and about three refineries to be importing finished products for local use. President Tinubu should roll his sleeves and remove whatever barrier that has caused us this shame. He sought this job and he got it; let him hit the ground running. Nigerians want good government, less corruption, security of life and property, steady electricity, working hospitals, good and affordable schools, opportunities for jobs, etc.; that’s all Nigerians ask for. Majority of Nigerians care less about the political party, religion or ethnic background of whoever is in power.

It is only the President that can save this country from anarchy and doom. The moment he decides and whips all his cabinet members, family and friends to line, he has gotten it right. No sitting president in Nigeria will ever succeed when you fail to draw the line for your family members and friends, and have firm control of your cabinet. That’s very crucial. President Tinubu must immediately stamp his feet on the ground and take absolute control of his government. He must stop his children from parading themselves as though, they are part of his cabinet. It runs contrary to the constitution of the Federal Republic and encourages corruption and indiscipline. He must establish discipline in his family. President Tinubu must do away with the office of the First Lady or better still send it to the background. The office of the First Lady gulps a whole lot of money without any statutory backing.

The Federal Government must cut down on expenses to save resources for projects. For instance, the unnecessary purchase of SUV vehicles for all members of NASS, reducing the salaries and allowances of Executive and NASS members, doing away with some of the presidential jets, reduce the retinue of security aides and convoys usually attached to senior government officials, arrest frequent travels of officials and cost. The profligacy in government must be disallowed.

Written by Uzodinma Nwaogbe

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