(By Iheanyi Ezinwo)-President Muhammadu Buhari had the privilege, in 2015, to return as Nigeria’s leader after his first stint between 1983 and 1985, as a military dictator. Nigerians, who witnessed his first coming can tell that not much has changed in his second coming, especially the style and impact of his administration resulting in widespread hardship among the citizens.
Today, unemployment and insecurity are on the increase. The same for nepotism and controversial war against graft. Besides, Nigeria appears more divided in all lines, more than ever, in the nation’s over 50 years of existence, the reason most Nigerians are not disposed to handing Buhari a second term ticket.
It is also important to add that the president’s recent interview on Nigeria Television Authority created more doubts than confidence on the hearts of observers about his health status. The feeling among the majority is that Buhari needs some time to take care of his health, instead of being burdened with the difficult challenge of running the affairs of Nigeria.
The emergent revelations have become a great source of concern to Nigerians and the international community alike. Which ever one looks at it, the international community is interested in the affairs of Nigeria, whether political or economic, because of the country’s position as a leading country, not only in Africa but in the entire world because of her population and natural endowments. What this means is that, not only Nigerians are concerned about the forthcoming general election, the international community are also monitoring the situation to ensure that the outcome do not only produce leaders with clear ideas on how to advance the country’s development , but that the process is devoid of acts that could threaten Nigeria’s corporate existence.
Interestingly, while foreign nations are not supposed to be seen, in clear terms, to be interfering in the internal affairs of Nigeria, from the body language of some of them, it is not difficult to figure out where their interests lie. It is therefore against this background that, the visit of Atiku Abubakar and some top Nigerian government officials to the United States can be seen as very instructive.
Until now, social media platforms and traditional media have been inundated with reports and views alleging that Atiku, the Peoples Democratic Party Presidential candidate will be arrested the day he sets his foot on America because of some outstanding corruption charges – against him. Analysts believe that the visit of Atiku Abubakar to Washington DC clearly represents a tactical endorsement of his aspiration to rule Nigeria by President Donald Trump of America, and this view is boosted by alleged uncomplimentary statement made against Buhari by President Donald Trump last year.
It would be recalled that Buhari rode to power in 2015 on the popular support of Nigerians but the story appears to have since changed as citizens are disappointed with the inability of the All Progressives Congress, led by President Muhammadu Buhari, to fulfill their electoral promises. Many who had expected Buhari to do better in the war against Boko Haram because of his military background are disappointed that not much has changed, in spite of claims that the terrorists have been technically defeated. More lives of Nigerian soldiers and those of civilians are still being lost, close to four years in the life of President Buhari’s administration.
Considering the health and other challenges that Buhari had to contend with since his return as a civilian leader, many Nigerians believe that he has done his best, but hat his best is not good enough, hence the need for change if Nigeria must be competitive at the global stage. Having realised his aspiration to rule as a democratic president, after his first coming as a military junta, the popular opinion is that Buhari will have nothing to lose if the outcome of the 2019 election is unfavourable. A school of thought argues that Buhari has no reason to be desperate to return in 2019, and that for any acts of desperation, Nigerians must look beyond Buhari and identify those characters who want to hide under the president’s reelection to score some political points.
All indications point to the fact that 2019 is Atiku’s time, and many Nigerians see him as a better choice; knows where he is going and where he wants to take Nigeria to. Atiku’s focus on reviving the economy to promote business and create jobs has made him irresistible to Nigerians, and from all indications, attempts to subvert the will of the majority will fail, naturally.
Nigeria is being driven to the precipice by disregard for rule of law and rampant unlawful killings, and the slide must be halted. It was Martin Luther King Jnr. Who said that, “Time is cluttered with the wreckage of communities which surrendered to hatred and violence. For the salvation of our nation and the salvation of mankind, we must follow another way”.
Timely word! May God bless and keep Nigeria.
Iheany Ezinwo is publisher of Notable Outcome.