When do we get it right?
When can Nigeria be said to be on easy street and coasting on, with majority of the citizens happy and enjoying life? Will there be a time soon when Nigerians will not be thinking longingly and envying their friends in Canada, Sweden, Denmark, Australia and even South Africa?
It seems like we move from one controversy to another. If we resolve these controversies and move on as a better nation, it will be a different thing. But it looks like as we are looking for solution to one, another one rears its head and we sort of temporarily abandon that project and face the next wahala, while the old one is still unsolved.
We had our general elections almost six months ago but the ghost of those elections are still with us, with the Presidential election tribunal taking its time to settle down and letting us know the direction it is going.
It took the tribunal ages to be fully constituted and then its constitution was marred in the controversy of conflict of interest with its chairman, the President of the Court of Appeal. She took her time to decide on whether to recuse herself or not and we also had to wait for her to appoint a replacement when she eventually stepped aside. The tribunal seems to be on the move now, but it has to progress with speed because there is a deadline to meet with regards to the electoral law and time for disposing of petitions.
We have an elected President who took the oaths of office and allegiance on May 29. The fact that he did not present an inauguration address brought another controversy. We eventually had him speak to us on June 12 – the new Democracy Day. But where people satisfied? What was the right thing to do?
Well, Muhammadu Buhari is on seat as President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces and Chairman of the Federal Executive Council. But where is the FEC? Where are the FEC members – the Ministers of the Federal Republic of Nigeria?
The information managers insist the President cannot be stampeded and he should be allowed to work at his own pace. There are different ministerial lists flying around, fuelling the fears and controversy that we may be on the same track as 2015 when it took six months to set up the Federal cabinet. But the President is the President and the buck stops at his desk and we have no choice but to wait.
Of course we also went through the heat generated by the campaign and elections for the offices of principal officers of the National Assembly and the following criticisms of how the exercise went, including allegations of $10,000 each for votes and snapping of ballot papers in the House of Representatives. But like the Mounties who always get their man, the ruling party got their wish and their choice of officers prevailed.
We now have the Ruga controversy. Some say it is a storm in a teacup. Others have weaved several conspiracy theories as to the intent and purpose of Ruga.
Some of us have thought and known in the past that Ruga is an Hausa name for Fulani settlement – that it is not even a Fulani name. Others have weaved that RUGA is an acronym for Rural Grazing Area and that the project is meant to establish settlements for Fulanis all over the country.
The Federal and some State governments, groups and individuals are forming and explaining their own theories on Ruga and what the proponents want to achieve through it.
So it has been controversies galore.
When do we have the time to develop the economy and put the country on the path of progress?
Where do we go from here?
Image Credit: billmuehlenberg.com