Friday, April 7, 2017

Buhari: Worst President Nigeria Ever Had?

By Ikechukwu Amaechi
***This article was first published in my column, Candour's Niche, September last year, about the same time Nasir el-Rufai, Governor of Kaduna State wrote his secret "love letter" to Buhari which has now been leaked to the media by the Aso Rock cabal.
Is anybody still in doubt that General Muhammadu Buhari was grossly overrated? Is anybody still in doubt that the man who was elected Nigeria's president in 2015 lacks the capacity to be even a local government chairman? If you are, please read this article once again.
*Buhari
I have two confessions to make from the outset.
I am an incurable optimist. I am a firm believer in the maxim that no matter how dark a tunnel may appear to be, there will always be some ray of light at the end.

Of course, this presupposes that for you to encounter this light, you must not stand still at the darkest end of the tunnel. Therefore, the philosophy underpinning this belief is that for you to get to the bright end, you must keep moving away from the darkest end.

You must stay the course; perseverance is the watchword. Don’t quit because quitters never win. Here, pragmatism is an inevitable companion.

This conviction also informed my reaction to the socio-political and economic developments in our country in recent times.

I strongly believed that no matter how starkly the national augury may seem to tilt south, we shall overcome as long as we have a leadership that is prepared to put on its thinking cap, prepared to listen, be pragmatic and innovative in handling the myriad of problems confronting the nation.

The last thing we need right now is a leadership that is in denial, a leadership that revels, like the ostrich, in burying its head in the sand, thinking that nobody is seeing it. The last thing we need in this country is a leadership whose only solution to the problems is to point fingers of blame at others. Unfortunately, this is the leadership we have right now.

My second confession is that I am really afraid for this country’s fate under President Muhammadu Buhari’s watch.

My worry was not informed by the frightening numbers released by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) on Wednesday, August 31, which finally confirmed what many already knew – that the economy had slid into recession or that Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth at a woeful –2.06% performance did worse than expected. It was –0.36% in the first quarter.

The fact that $1 exchanged for N425 last week with a potential of going beyond N500 before the end of the year, while inflation rose to 17.1 per cent in July from 16.5 in June is scary, but didn't worry me much.

Ditto the unemployment figure which increased to 13.3 per cent from 12.1 per cent and investment inflows which dropped to the lowest levels at $647.1 million from $710 million.

These figures are the natural consequences of the otiose and impractical monetary and fiscal policies of the Buhari administration. Discerning Nigerians and members of the international community didn’t expect anything different.

But as grim as they are, what worries me most is the puerile antics of some chieftains of the All Progressives Congress (APC), including Buhari, and APC National Chairman, John Oyegun.

It baffles me that those who claim to be our leaders can actually indulge in such laughable political shenanigans.
*Ikechukwu Amaechi is the Managing Director and Editor-in-Chief of TheNiche newspaper (ikechukwuamaechi@yahoo.com)

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