Buhari’s envelope of foreign currency

THE t’eni bàjè ò kàn mi (I don’t care if anyone else’s is ruined) attitude of those who promoted President Muhammadu Buhari as the new messiah in 2015 should be called to question. But it’s been a queer whimper. What we have now are intra-party squabbles, anti-party activities, carpet-crossings and shoves in the political open market. “They don’t care about us” is one of the numerous Michael Jackson’s songs. He called out the ruling class. Like Michael Jackson, I wail. All I want to say is that they don’t really care about us! They wreck and ruin and smile.

No one hears the voice of the predatory crocodile, yet it’s deadlier than the crowing rooster. That’s the extant condition of Nigeria in the hands of those currently with the reins of power. Nigeria is in a palpable quandary, but those who are supposed to help steer the ship of the state are only interested in stealthily floating upon the citizenry like hungry crocodiles. They are currently seeking straws with which to build and decorate their political nests while the country is squeaking sadly to painful ruins.

Around the country today, hardly any sector is breathing. Millions of businesses are on life support. Millions others have been stifled while others outrightly suffocated. Most of the surviving components of the national economy are perpetually lamenting, cringing at the slaps and wobbling under the weight of a fitful economy. There doesn’t seem to be any answer for the free fall of the beleaguered Naira. This helpless situation has shot inflation so high that most hapless Nigerians can only writhe on the canvass. Nigerians have been left wondering if it is Mgbeke that does not know how to shave the head or that it is the blade that is blunt? That’s the Nigerians’ confusion.

A new feather to the cap of the shenanigans is the ill-advised two-week deadline given to Nigerians to link their national identity numbers with their mobile phone numbers. It is even more enervating that the government’s statement conveying this anomalous policy also announced the total suspension of all SIM registration. Thus, it means that we would stop new lines and block existing ones that cannot be linked to their national identity number. All within two weeks, in the height of the holiday season and with crass infrastructure at the disposal of the national identity management people…? And these are the same Nigerians whose data had been captured during bank verification; voter’s card registration, mobile SIM card registration/verification, international passport application and so on? Indeed, our rulers seem not to be tired of stretching and stretching Nigerians.

The suffering in the land does not appear to move the political class. The people are angry even in the ruling party, but they lack the courage to publicly announce their misgiving. The nearest to speaking up on the sorry state of the country was Senator Olu Adetumbi of Ekiti North. He was a lonely voice in the wilderness. Thus, many have come to the conclusion that the political class in the last five years have been acting true to type: Unconcerned. Civil society groups too are in a posture of the man who is rejoicing that he had crossed the river before the bridge collapsed. They have assumed the posture of “Mmíri magbue ndí gara ahia, nne m o gara a ga?” (I don’t care if the rain should thoroughly drench those that went to the market, is my mother among them?)… Like “bámú bámú ni mo yó, emi ò mò bóyá ebi n p’omo enikan kan” (I am filled, I don’t care if the child of the other man is hungry)

The Special Adviser to President Buhari on Media and Publicity, Mr. Femi Adesina, is among those who don’t care. Egbon Femi gave a further glimpse into his own life and that of an angelic Muhammadu Buhari, which Nigerians had never seen or were aware of. He was writing on president Buhari at 78. For me, what he narrated was a special tribute that tends more to affirm the helplessness of Nigerians in the hands of an absent president than anything else.

Adesina, again,  created the scenario of a fiddling Emperor Nero. Some historians believe that Nero’s legendary aloofness was more of fiction than reality. Of course Rome burned, as historians say, on July 18, 64, but the add-ons to the story is that Nero played, some say flute, some say fiddle, while some of the city’s 14 districts were completely razed. While Nero was said to be adept at the lyre and even composed music for himself, historians said he actually wasn’t as bad as he was painted by the stories, and that he actually offered refuge to some of the victims of the great fire in his palace. That, to me, is the meaning of “Buhari at 78: If only we knew this president” written by Mr. Adesina.

He again held that the growing trust deficit in the Buhari government is foolishness on the part of the unbelieving Nigerians. However, he hasn’t been able to convincingly establish why Nigerians should invest any more trust in a government that has not only profoundly failed them, but has enmeshed them in further misery, even beyond what they believed could happen when they swallowed the dummy that Buhari was a “born-again democrat”.

Mr. Adesina’s envelope of foreign currency, the support when he went to “chop his oye” of Nwanne di na Mba of Mmaku in Enugu State and the condolence he got when he was bereaved are enough for Nigerians to close their eyes to their current misery. He wants us to open them to only see a nice President Buhari that gives his aide frequent aid. I don’t think occasional handouts to Bro. Femi are enough to brand our President to a good man. Nigerians in parts of Shiroro LG of Niger State should read Mr. Adesina’s tribute and clap in their manacles or on their hospital beds. What they need is to get their life back, and make their communities safe for their life to thrive, not a sermon on the goodness or intentions of their president who promised to tackle insecurity by leading from the front.

Egbon Femo has acted like the chicken, which the Igbo say finds a home on a branch after he has soiled the ground with his excreta. He is not interested in what Nigerians are pointing at as some of the numerous abnormalities in the government his principal is running. Adesina is like the man who ruined the èèdè because he is going to Ede.

And, by the way, happy 78th birthday President Buhari. The release of the school children of Kankara is a befitting birthday present.


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