FROM SIMPLE TO COMPLEX: GOVERNMENT MAGIC
Dem go turn red into blue
Dem go turn green into white
Government magic…Fela Anikulapo Kuti
Governance in Nigeria has always been a serious unpassed JAMB exams for most of Nigerian leaders.It’s infact a few of them that God truly blessed with annointing for leadership success while in office.It’s even amazing that they appear clueless to national challenges while in office only for their brains to come back to life after leaving political offices when there’s little or nothing they can do,to affect our lives positively.
Examples abound of our leaders’ sudden progressive thinking while out of office.Chief Olusegun was, not quite long ago; quoted to have said that the only way to avoid revolution in Africa was for African leaders to get serious about governance by providing job opportunities for the teeming jobless youths.This statement was made consequent upon removal of strong man of Egypt-Hosni Mubarak and the attendant humiliations of his trial.Also,former Military President General Ibrahim Babangida popular called IBB made a remarkable statement on advising President Goodluck Jonathan on the need for political restructuring.He was right about his calls for power devolution to the states and local government.Even General Gowon was quoted recently as saying that the late Ikemba Odumegwu Ojukwu went to war because of the persecution of Igbos in that period.
The questions to ask these leaders are-
• What motivated this sudden line of thoughts lately that wasn’t there while they were in power?
• Where were these commonsense that could have engraved these progressive thoughts in our hearts, while in power?
• What’s in power that blinds our leaders from treading the path of greatness for the good of all while in power?
Well,power and its mysteries are not my concern in this piece but how successive governments fool Nigerians with their not-so-thorough-nor-well-thought-out policies under un-necessary nomenclatures.This is not limited to federal government alone.It cuts across all tiers of government.It has become a way of politcal life in Nigeria to create committees upon committees for government to pretend they are listening to us.Well,I know that boys must ‘chop’ but the ‘chopping’ must be at the instance of performance and not at the expense of our collective welfare.
This present administration has had its fair share of what Fela rightly tagged government magic.Governance has been made to look very complex for understanding through unnecessary politicking.The challenges that require immediate actions temporarily on short term basis,would be given life by our politicians to play on our collective intelligence knowing full well that we mostly suffer from collective amnesia.
How do we tag various committees with various assignments,even where the assignments run foul of existing regulatory authorities created by and recognised by law?Where are the impacts of these committees on our collective well-being?What has happened to our infrastructure since the constitution of Earnest Shonekan-led Board of Infrasturcture Concession?What has happened to our refineries or even our so-called CABALS with all the revelations at the House committee on Subsidy Removal Probes?What has changed positively with our economy since increasing pump price of PMS since January?Where are the alarming postulations of CBN Governor-Lamido Sanusi Lamido- on our impending economic crash if subsidy was not removed?Is Nigeria truly on the-road to-Greece in its economic experiences?Where are the cuts in the political take-home pays dummy sold to Nigerians by President Goodluck Jonathan during the Subsidy crisis?
What about committee set up for the sake of Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB)?There’s another one led by ever brilliant Dr Kalu Idika Kalu on Refineries Special Task Force and then Ribadu-led on Petroleum Revenue Task force.All these committees are just as usual to buy time and play down on our political yearnings.By the time these various committees round off their assignments,another sets of committee would be set up to look into the recomendations of the preceeding committees and before you know it,four years is gone and another round of electoral processess will begin.Then,you will see political slogans like Continuity 2015,Completing the good work 2015 etc.
This is how we have been running our affairs for ages and this is why we are where we are.Results and performances are not determining factors for political qualification nor electoral decisions.All I know is that governance is never as difficult as our leaders make it to look.If it’s this complex,Ghana would not be where she is nor Botswana nor South Africa.China would not be a world superpower nor America the envy of all nations.It takes good spirit,patriotism,personal political vision and divine grace to be successful in government.No amount of committees would change our state if it’s not done out of not only good intentions but also utmost political honesty.
By 2015,I would like to be proved wrong with these committees.
By Olatona Olabode
FROM SIMPLE TO COMPLEX: GOVERNMENT MAGIC