|Buhari during swearing-in|
As the nation draws near to the 100-day benchmark of the President Muhammadu Buhari administration, a legal luminary, Dr. Kayode Ajulo has described the president’s performance so far as “being fraught with ominous signs that Nigerians would do hell to pay attention to.
Ajulo, who is National Secretary of the Labour Party and also the founder and Eexcutive Director of the Egalitarian Mission, a non-governmental organization that seeks to address socioeconomic inequalities across the nation, stated while addressing journalists today, that contrary to his pledge to work to deepen democratic principles and foster the unity of the nation, the president’s recent moves were indicative of a person who esteemed ethno-tribal sentiments as having pride of place over nationalistic ideals.
“The president is setting dangerous precedents by his ethnic slants on the recent appointments made, and he should be called to order. Though some argue that he hasn’t made up to a quarter of federal appointments yet, my people here in Ondo say that “the eye which would stand the test of time would not exude pus or mucus early in the day”. It is also a common saying here in Ondo that “it is from Friday that we know how Saturday and Sunday would be”. The ethnioc slant in the appointments so far is just too obvious, and we cannot afford to just ignore these ominous signs,” Ajulo said.
Ajulo debunked insinuations that people were just crying “wolf” in order to distract President Buhari from the business of governance, insisting that the citizens had a constitutional right to question and critique the government of the day, and whatever decisions they may take.
“These insinuations are actually ridiculous; I wonder what the praise singers of the president expect. Do they want Nigerians to fold their hands in resignation, or join them in cheering the president as he tows the dangerous path of sectionalism and nepotism? Do they expect Nigerians to play blind, deaf and dumb? It is actually an insult to the sensibilities of Nigerians to insist that they sit and keep mute while the president continues to treat the nation like an occupied territory.
“Granted Nigerians demanded change, and voted in the candidate of their choice. Does that mean the struggle for a greater Nigeria is over, or that we have arrived at our destination? There are many questions to be asked and Nigerians should not be deprived of their right to ask questions,” he insisted.
Commenting on the fact that the President Buhari-led Administration would mark 100 days in office in a matter of days, the legal luminary said that it “would be opportune time for Nigerians to reflect on their electoral choices, and to evaluate what it has brought them so far”.
“As the administration would soon mark 100 days in office, Nigerians should ask questions about their achievement. Nigerians should take that campaign pamphlet “My Covenant with Nigerians” and “100 Things Buhari Would Do in 100 Days” and interrogate the administration viz-a-viz the promises contained in the documents, it is uncharitable, breach of social contract and utter deceit and conspiracy against Nigerians for Buhari to deny the knowledge of these campaign promises.
“The president is reputed to be a man of integrity. Let him come forward and tell Nigerians how well he had done on delivering on his campaign promises. We would like to see if the nation is moving forward, stagnating or even retrogressing. This is not a matter of baseless criticisms; there are available benchmarks to judge him by. For me, my desire is to see him succeed as this would translate to a better life for my countrymen. It is nothing personal and it is all about the progress of our nation but people are free to interprete our work as they see fit,” he said.
Expressing fears that the president’s actions would deepen the divisions created by past leaders, he warned that these actions would not augur well for the nation.
“We are raising alarm and warning because history is a teacher, and if we do not learn its lessons well, we are doomed to repeat the mistakes made in the past. We should stop to consider what led to the 1966 war, and what led to the coups we have witnessed in the past. I am continually haunted by the coup d’etat speech given by General Joseph Danjuma in 1984. What led to it?
“Right now, even chieftains within the APC are cringing at the brazen actions of President Buhari. They may not be speaking out but I can tell you some of them have spoken in confidence, and they are not happy with his stance on some of these issues. The actions could have huge implications because even now, it is fostering a culture of distrust and disunity,” he said.
Ajulo called on the general public to stay vigilant and rigorously examine the decisions and policies being enacted by the administration.
“It is our constitutional right to demand good governance and we will not relent. We call on all lovers of equity to continue to do their bit, and play their role in ensuring that President Buhari succeeds. Eternal vigilance, they say, is the price of liberty, so all hands must be on deck to ensure that the government does not renege on the promises made while it was wooing the nation for support and for votes,” he said.
The Egalitarian Mission Publicity