Michael Kaashe Aondoakaa must be chuckling over the rot and confusion in President Goodluck Jonathan’s government. In fact, if the former attorney-general of the federation had the litigation reflex of the late Gani Fawehinmi, he would be heading to court by now to sue Labaran Maku for plagiarism.
The minister of information last Wednesday lifted Aondoakaa’s defence for absentee president as alibi for Jonathan’s decision to leave the country at a time insurgents laid siege to two boisterous states. He told his antagonists that Jonathan could rule Nigeria from anywhere in the world.
Maku’s sin is that he did not give credit to the original owner of the lyrics he played back to Nigerians. He had said exactly what Aondoakaa said in the dying days of late President Umaru Musa Yar’Adua when he was ferried to Saudi Arabia for medical attention. Maku’s excuse was as untenable and deceptive as Aondoakaa’s.
Jonathan himself further rubbished his information minister’s lame excuse. The president in his media chat on Sunday presented a made-in-Brazil alibi for his curious decision to shun the security threat in Yobe and Kaduna states and attend a United Nations earth summit in Brazil.
He said that his colleagues in countries where there were similar security challenges as Nigeria strongly cautioned him not to allow the insurgents’ threat dictate his movement. In other words, the president would have been bowing to the dictates of the terrorists if he had cancelled his trip to Brazil.
One, however, wonders if the sacking of the minister of defence and the national security adviser after the deadly attacks on Kaduna and Damaturu would not send the same message that the president’s cancellation of the trip to Brazil would have sent to the terrorists. If the president’s line of defence is tenable then the terrorists must be popping champagne for ousting two of their arch-enemies.
The president sounded rather incoherent and unconvincing on the issue of power supply. Having failed to deliver on two different deadlines, he was very careful not to set a fresh deadline for what has proved to be more difficult for Nigeria than landing a man on the moon.
One could see from the chat that Jonathan is out of touch with the reality on ground. He said that power supply was improving by the day when in reality the situation is deteriorating. As the president spoke, a large chunk of Lagos was just getting power supply for the first time in four days. Even with that, two minutes into the president’s speech, there was a major outage that lasted for a greater part of the chat.
The organisers of Euro 2012 football championship were cruel to Jonathan. The match between England and Italy was played simultaneously with the presidential chat. Millions watched the match rather than listen to the president’s boring charade. Nigeria is a very unfortunate country. It is cursed by a cruel succession of inept and corrupt rulers who are either too weak to enforce the laws of the land or too brutal and selfish to think of the welfare of the people. Jonathan rules Nigeria by committees.
Since he stirred the hornet’s nest in January, 2012 by raising fuel price, he has set up at least four committees on the same issue. There are fears that as the president runs out of ideas on how to tackle the thorny issue, a committee may be set up to think of more committees to be set up. Those who are worried that the president flew out of the country at a time he was needed most should ask themselves what Jonathan could have done if he had cancelled his trip to Brazil.
The president had in the last one year proved incapable of taking hard decisions on the insurgency that is gradually engulfing the country. Sources close to the presidency contend that the ousted national security adviser Gen. Andrew Owoye Azazi’s outburst at the South-south summit two months ago in Asaba, was borne out of his frustration with the president’s kid-glove treatment of the insurgents.
If the president is soft on the insurgents, he is openly pitting his tent with those looting the treasury. Mrs. Diezani Alison-Madueke, the woman on the saddle at the petroleum ministry during the unprecedented looting of the treasury in the guise of fuel subsidy administration, remains the president’s best performing minister despite the monumental scandal uncovered by the House of Representatives ad-hoc committee on subsidy administration.
The body language of the president is that the men looting the treasury are his friends and that the terrorists slaughtering people are the friends of his friends who railroaded him to Aso Rock against mass protest in the north.
However, those who believe that Jonathan should have stayed back even as a token of respect for the scores who were killed by the insurgents’ explosives and the reprisal attacks they triggered, should remember that the president of Nigeria is not accountable to the Nigerian people .The lesson from the president’s behaviour is that the Nigerian people are yet to fashion out a system that would ensure a ballot box ouster of faltering rulers like Jonathan.
Filed Under: Jerry Uwah