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Author Name: Musa Augustine
Number of articles: 4
Democracy the world over is believed to be the best system of government. Little wonder most developed... (0) Comment


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Nigeria: President Goodluck Jonathan and the task to deliver
Author: Musa Augustine | May 31, 2011



There is time for everything. Time to laugh and time to cry, time to work and time to rest, time to born time to die, according to the Christian holy book, the Bible. Few months ago, the issue of elections gulfed the atmosphere in the country, with campaigns here and there, ranging from print to electronic media with candidates making promises. Some laying emphasis on security, job creation, agriculture, electricity as their top priorities. The election had come and gone and winners have emerged, with good losers congratulating the winners and promising their support for the interest of the country or their respective states. While those who feel otherwise have vowed to go to the tribunals. But what maters most is where do we go from here? Since 1999 when our long struggle for democracy was achieved, elections have always been conducted, as it is the culture. There can be no election without political campaigns. and as we know, such campaigns always go with promises as was the case with the 2011 elections. But the question remains, when do we see these promises being fulfilled? As the 2011 general election was a clash of the titans. Although as the proverbial saying, “When two elephants meet in a fight, it is the grasses that suffer.” The fight had been fought, the grasses had suffered, with one elephant defeating the other. But it was unfortunate that a lot of lives were lost in the post election crises. In some instances, places of worship and houses burnt down leaving some Nigerians becoming refugees in their homeland. The task before President Jonathan today is what to do for these sacrifices. In one of my articles captioned “Zoning, uniting or salvaging Nigeria” I said that gone are the days when our politicians make promises of bettering the lots of the citizens. Thank God today Nigerians are begining to understand the power of the ballot as expressed by Mr. President when casting his vote in one of the 2011 elections. It is heart-warming that Nigerians can easily knock out any politician that only wait for election time to return to the electorate for votes. Today, President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan has taken another fresh mandate to lead the affairs of this country for another four years. It is interesting to note that he is the first ever elected president in an internationally recognized election since the inception of democracy in Nigeria (1999). The issue, today, is as President Jonathan comes on board as the president of this country, what should the common man on the street expect? Any time I watched at television, before, during and after the election, I do watch with keen interest the comments of Mr. President during campaigns and after the election and also his thank you messages and congratulatory messages from some section of Nigerians. Each time I watched these, first question that first came to my mind was, “Is Mr. President aware of the hunger and poverty in the land. Does he know that these people are hungary? Also when I was watching the children performance at Eagle Square during the 2011 Independence Day celebration right in front of the President, I laughed and continued my usual questioning, “Is Mr. President aware that the parents of these young children still struggle to pay their school fees? Not that the parents of these children are not working class or they have served the country in one way or the other and retired but still their entitlements have not been paid to them making life so difficult and they are living from hand to mouth talk more of paying their wards’ school fees due to leadership failure after 50 years of unfruitful leadership. President Jonathan in his campaign rallies seemed to understand the yearning and aspiration of the masses as he vowed to make the election different from others by first of all preaching the gospel of bloodless election where he said, “Nor my ambition or any other person’s ambition worth the blood of a single Nigerian, give peace a chance.” As if the president knew then that there was going to be crisis before, during and after the election, although not understanding, I contemplated what would have been the cause of the crisis if it was to happen. The people refused to give peace a chance and violence erupted, where many Nigerians young and old, married and single, employed and unemployed were unjustifiably killed. And who knows whether among those killed, including the young ambitious youth corps members, one would have become the country’s president in the nearest future? The biggest question here is what does President Goodluck Jonathan have in mind now that he has been sworn-in as President for another term of four years to pay for the sacrifice those patriotic Nigerians that gave their lives during the election violence for the betterment of this great country. The task for him is to deliver or take the same route as successive administrations whom we only saw their achievements on the pages of newspapers, whom we only heard of trillion of Naira budget presentation and defence but ended up in their personal accounts. I remember in one of President Jonathan’s public functions where he attributed the post election violence to lack of proper voters’ education. I disagree with him that the violence was due to lack of proper voters’ education as it is believed that about two if not three months to the election when both electronic print medias embarked on educating the eligible voting population which I can boldly say here that there is no any eligible voter in Nigeria would claimed to be ignorant of the process before the election because he or she was not well informed. If it is true that there was no proper education on the election, how was the voters all over the federation turned out in their numbers on the first day of the National Assembly elections that was later postponed by the INEC Chairman, Professor Attahiru Jega, and immediately after the announcement of the postponement the whole country was almost gulfed in flame as most of the voters were carried potable radios to their pooling units. I al most fall a victim that fateful day when I was trying to convinced some voters that we should give Jega a free hand to do the right thing as we have already expressed total confidence on him that he is able to deliver be cause it was already believed that Jega’s announcement of the postponement of the election was a mathematical attempt to rigged the election in favour of some individual. If electorate would go to polling units with radios in their ears, and those without asking endless questions? What proper education do we need? Do we need to send electorate to class room like pupils before any election? This is to tell you how far both the Ministry of Information and Communication, National Orientation Agency (NOA), INEC Public Information Department, electronic and print medias went within the two or three months to educate the people both in urban and rural areas, in all nook and crannies of this country. In order not to shy away from the bitter truth and of the remote cause of the post election violence particularly in the North, is failure of leadership and nothing else. It is a blast for a country like Nigeria blessed in every sphere of life for over 50 years of independent living under objects poverty, particularly in the Northern states where issue of proper education for the Almajiris is still a sing-song service, industries like Arewa Textile Limited, Kaduna Textile Limited (KTL), companies like the Northern Nigerian Development Company (NNDC), New Nigerian Newspapers (NNN) and others remains what they are. The Kaduna Polytechnic which is one of the supportive backbone of education in the North for over five months on strike over minors and avoidable reasons. The truth of the matter is that the North of today has already passed vote of no confidence on its leaders and it become imperative for Mr. President to stretch his hands from the south to the North to convince the North that Nigeria under his able leadership is a country where everybody is somebody. MUSA AUGUSTINE can be reached through this email: austinegayu at yahoo.com

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Daniel Eyo Bassey    PH, NIGERIA    June 02, 2011
Goodluck have a good thing for nigeria,i belive in him so well that is goin to many a better nigerian place,There is time for everything. Time to laugh and time to cry, time to work and time to rest, time to born time to die, according to the Christian holy...
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