Human rights lawyer and Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Femi Falana not too long ago asked the electorate to first demand from all 2023 presidential aspirants, how they intend to tackle the security challenges tearing our country apart instead of dissipating energy on APC and PDP which he said are two sides of the same coin. With bandits, foreign Fulani herdsmen and other insurgents levying taxes over ungoverned territories, attacking military formations, airports, railway, highways, many Nigerians today believe President Buhari’s government is overwhelmed in spite of its seven years heroic battle.
Falana’s challenge resonated well with Nigerians, especially the besieged people of most parts of northern Nigeria. For instance, it was only on March 23, that 34 bodies were recovered following an attack on Kaura LGA of Kaduna according to Samuel Aruwan, the state commissioner for internal security and home affairs. On March 28, an Abuja-Kaduna train ferrying 970 passengers was attacked in Katari, area of the state by banditswho mined the track, killed nine, injured 29 and kidnapped unspecified number of people .
Within 24 hours, the bandits were back on Kaduna–Abuja highway where they attacked motorists before escaping with dozens of passengers. There are reports of daily harvests of deaths from Zamfara, Sokoto, Niger, Katsina states that are today neither safe for residents, farmers nor the over-stretched security forces.
But last week’s emergence of Buhari’s four zealot worshippers as potential presidential candidates who supported their appeal to the electorate with their participation in the president’s seven years heroic war against insurgents and other challenges bedevilling the nation was a big relief. They include Vice President (Pastor) Osinbajo, Pastor Tunde Bakare, Minister Rotimi Amaechi and Yahaya Bello, all celebrating their joint participation in the giant strides the president has made in the areas of agricultural revolution, railway revolution, and heroic battle against insurgency.
Osinbajo reminded Nigerians that on the order of President Buhari, he “visited our gallant troops in the Northeast and our brothers and sisters in the IDP camps and felt the pain and anguish of victims in violent conflicts, terrorist attacks”. He went on to give an undertaking to complete what he jointly started with the president viz: transforming our security and intelligence architecture; pursuit of justice for all and the observance of rule of law, advancing our infrastructure development, especially power, roads, railways, taking the agriculture revolution to the next level, ensuring that all Nigerians, male and female, attend school and finally assuring provision of jobs for our youths.
Now with such assurances coming from Osinbajo, a man of God, celebrated for his integrity, I think those who have been jarring our ear-lobes with their daily sing-song of 40%-50% unemployed rate of youths, unverified claim of 15million of out-of- school children, power outage and general insecurity across the nation, will give government a break and focus on Osinbajo’s message of hope. With Osinbajo remaining faithful to his principal’s policies, Buhari/Osinbajo train to the promised land is assured. And if you don’t vote for continuity in 2023, you are a traitor to a worthy cause.
As for Rotimi Amaechi, his’ seven years as minister of transportation, eight years as governor of Rivers State; eight years as Speaker, Rivers State House of Assembly and twice as president of Muhammadu Buhari’s campaign organisation, have sufficiently equipped him for the post-Buhari’s challenges.
And “instead of taking holiday to spend more time with his family, after more than two decades in the public arena, Amaechi was “compelled by the urgency of our present challenges to place his experience and proven capacity at the service of the nation at the highest level”. I on behalf of Nigerians commend Amaechi for his selfless service to the nation and hail his decision to ‘sacrifice his present for our future.’ Such patriotic act was last undertaken by Babangida and ‘his army of anything is possible’
For Pastor Bakare, who claimed to have been ordained president for 2023, “the south is being set against the north, while Christians are set against Muslims’; he ‘remains the rallying point to restore order in the country’. His “PTB brand is a rallying point for all Nigerians”, and he is imbued with “a vision of a new Nigeria in which he will play a leading role and has therefore declared himself “the best suitable candidate to address the problems confronting Nigeria”.
My warning to those troubled by Bakare’s fake predictions of the past including that of death before inauguration for Obasanjo who went on to complete his two terms of four years and even sought a third term: ‘don’t speak ill of a man of God.’
But of all Buhari’s zealot worshippers, I am more intrigued by Kogi State’s Yahaya Bello, the youngest but the least competent of all Nigerian governors. The current Nigerian youths who unlike Zik and Awo, their forbears that studied and read widely to proffer solutions to their country’s crisis of nation building, put their fate in power of the social media, now have the potential of electing one of their own as president in 2023.
And Yahaya Bello will ‘banish bandits, Boko Haram and ISWAP terrorists in one year if elected as president’. On how he would accomplish a goal that has eluded General Buhari, a hero of war for seven years, he “will ensure that every chief executive of the various federating units sits up and do their jobs, will not tolerate any lackadaisical attitude or passing of the buck to the centre, will ensure that various federating units are strengthened, and will supervise and ensure that all security agencies carry out their duties as expected”. Above all, he “will punish those not doing well”. He did not say if these are lessons from is mentor.
But with the above level of preparedness and commitment, it is perhaps only those who regard Bello as a comedian for proclaiming himself leader of Nigerian youths who will fail to acknowledge his readiness for the office of commander-in –chief come 2023 as I am sure the youths are earnestly yearning for him.
Osinbajo wants a Nigeria “where our diversities, tribes and faiths unite, rather that divide us”. But dear compatriots, who else but Osinbajo who has been an accomplice in Buhari’s seven years battle against Nigeria’s return to path of freedom by refusing to correct a 52-year old mistake by our ill-informed soldiers that balkanized a working federation into 36 unwieldy and unviable unitary state?
As for those who question the wisdom in Rotimi Amaechi’s continued expansion of the rail lines without first providing security along the completed lines, I will suggest they take Yahaya Bello for his words. He is going to banish bandits and insurgents from Nigeria within the first year of his presidency.
And as for the rest of us complaining about absence of governance even as Nigerians wage war of attrition against themselves, with prices of food hitting the roof amidst the success the nation recorded in her agriculture revolution, diesel oil refined in Nigeria going up to N650 per litre, kerosene meant for the poor disappearing from filling stations, bread moving up from N500 to N1,000, even as Lai Mohammed, the fake doctor continues to insist on our good health, and that the nation’s forlorn hope lies in Buhari’s four zealot worshippers’ promise to continue with his current policies.