‘Take a bow’ has turned out to be a popular lingo whenever the Nigerian Senate is clearing or confirming Ministers of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. It is really a four-year routine and many of are wondering if the confirmation exercise is worth all the time and energy devoted to it since it has turned out to be like going through the motion to ‘satisfy’ the provisions of the constitution.
I decided to listen to the November 2009 hit by Rihanna titled Take a Bow – you know, the one she sounds so much like Beyonce. The lyrics were very instructive, even though the circumstances of the composition and confirmation exercise are different.
After all the months of waiting for the ministerial list, many of us were ready to abandon serious work for a couple of days to watch live on TV the nominees being grilled by the Senators and hoping they will tell us how they can help fix our nation’s myriad of problems.
Worst hit in this ‘Take a bow’ gambit are probably the serious news media houses who have in the past depended on the proffered suggestions by prospective ministers as major headline news. They mostly have nothing this time because most of the nominees are being told to take a bow and go.
And it is not just the presiding officers that are responsible for this charade. Senators from the states of origin of the nominees seemed to have resolved that men or women should not be screened or made to answer questioned. They are requesting that their people should be given the Take a Bow treatment, saying ‘what is good for the goose is also good for the gander – a direct reference to the fact that some senators had prevailed for easy passage for their own so the same rule should apply all through.
Also, the Senate says because it is a gender friendly place, women should also not be questioned just because they are women. Hey! If I was a woman, I would reject that inference.
Just listen to the lines:
He used to be a senator – Take a Bow
He used to be a member of the House of Representatives – Take a Bow.
He used to be a minister and was screened then – Take a Bow.
He used to be an ambassador and was screened then – Take a Bow.
We are a gender friendly senate – All women take a Bow.
She is a loyal party member – Take a Bow.
She used to work in the Senate and used to come view proceedings – Take a Bow.
The next you will hear is:
He is taking over from me as minister – Take a Bow.
She was my media aid in 7th Senate – Take a Bow.
He is my former governor – Take a Bow.
She is my in-law – Take a Bow.
He bought me a car five years ago – Take a Bow.
His father’s grandfather was a patriotic Nigerian – Take Bow.
From the lyrics of Rihanna’s song, Take a Bow, does the senate deserve an applause or standing ovation for the way the ministerial confirmation is going?
Is the whole exercise looking ugly and should they cut it out?
Are they putting on a show and is the show entertaining? Entertaining to whom? Is the reason to clear ministers to showcase entertainment or should we just watch Big Brother Naija?
Or should the senate itself just Take a Bow go on their rescheduled vacation and give the President a blanket approval of the whole cabinet?
Nigeria, more than ever before, need a good cabinet that will work as a team to steer the ship of state from the precipice where we currently are, to the much-vaunted promised land.
IMAGE CREDIT: actorgenie.com
Epa Ogie Eboigbe, veteran journalist, broadcaster and public affairs specialist writes and analyses current and historical issues with a ‘wise pen’.