Nigeria’s Future Needs Change Of Leadership –Ex-Minister
By Umoh-Obong Kingsley |
More reactions have continued to trail the outcome of the All Progressives Congress (APC) presidential campaign flag-off for President Muhammadu Buhari in Akwa Ibom State on Friday, 28 December.
Former Federal Minister of Lands, Housing & Urban Development, Chief Nduese Essien, while bisecting some of the issues affecting the country on Inspiration 105.9FM, Uyo, made his point known as regards the visit of President Muhammadu Buhari and the campaign by the APC to flag-off their campaign in the South-South region of the country.
He said the reason the president chose Akwa Ibom as flag-off point for the presidential campaign was because Akwa Ibom has the facilities and is also a peaceful place for everybody to assemble.
According to him, the campaign flag off for President Muhammadu Buhari in Akwa Ibom State was a drama, saying that an electioneering campaign for the entire South-South could not have taken off at 4pm and ended at 5.30pm with a lot of dramatic scenario on stage, as people were hurried to handover the microphone as if the programme was just scheduled to be a sideshow that would not present the candidates not even the party.
“It ended up with the president not telling us what he has done so far or what he is expected to do in his second term. We were expecting that coming to flag off the elections campaigns in Akwa Ibom State, he would first of all tell Akwa Ibom people what the government has been able to do for them during the period of three and a half years, but that was never done.”
Chief Nduese described as unfortunate the fact that President Buhari has never deemed it necessary to visit the state since he assumed office in 2015, adding that the last time the president visited Akwa Ibom was during his electioneering campaigns in 2014, but has gone to some other states about twice or more since he assumed office but he has only come here for that dramatic show of launching his campaign without telling Akwa Ibom people anything yet some people think that is an achievement for their party.
“The Vice President came here to commission the Syringe factory and visited the General Hospital Etinan, as an acting president. We expect our president to find time and visit the states he is governing,” he noted.
He further stated that Nigeria’s future could be better if a change in leadership is effected, and that the present state of affairs that people come into governance unprepared cannot make for a progressive, peaceful and united Nigeria. “We need people who have made up their minds to govern, have a programme, articulated their programmes and are ready to come and implement the programme. We are disenchanted with the performance of the APC government.”
Taking into account Buhari’s speech during the campaign which limited it to three cardinal points of security, economy and fight against corruption, Chief Nduese said the president took over office in 2015 with war between Boko Haram only in the Northeast, but ince he came, the Boko Haram war is still on but there have been new areas of fighting and killings including Zamfara where people are being killed indiscriminately, and there is herdsmen crisis in Benue, Taraba and Plateau states.
He added that there is no improvement in the security situation of the country and what he inherited, instead, security has gotten worse than when he came in, as Boko Haram has gone beyond attacking civilians, and are now going after military men, killing soldiers and virtually taking over military installations of the Nigerian Military.
On economy, the former Federal Minister said “We have all seen that Nigeria’s economy situation is worse than what the current president inherited. He claims to have made improvement in food production but we are being rated one of the poorest nations in the world, and we are said to be importing rice, rated second next to China. I don’t know where the production of food is going to because we are not better of.
“On the fight against corruption, we are all aware that the president has tried to punish those who had perpetrated corrupt practices before he came into office, but unfortunately, most of those people have now ran over to his party, and once they cross carpet to his party, they become saints. They are not being harassed. So the corrupt people have done an assembly around the government, and are staying there to perpetrate more corruption.
“So, he is not on the right path in terms of fighting corruption. We would expect him to find ways of preventing further corrupt practices during his government while at the same time, tackling those who had gotten away with Nigerian money.”
Speaking on the chances of Governor Udom Emmanuel’s reelection come 2019, Chief Nduese explained that from the scheme of things and performance of the Governor, people have come to see that here is a governor who came in with the technical expedite for governance, having come from a background and training that prepared him for that role, and having worked successfully in the business sector, rising to the pinnacle, he was drafted to take over the governance of this state.
He had the difficulties of recession at the beginning of his administration and long period of court cases also distracted him. But having gone through that and particularly when his mentor abandoned him, he has become freer to perform, as he has been faster in taking decisions and things done more promptly than before.
In terms of industrial development, he said over 12 industries including the syringe factory currently producing 400,000 syringes daily with the aim of moving to one million; the metering company, and several others have sprung up within the three and a half years of his administration.
He also stated that APC was not ready for government but were only determined to send away the previous administration by all means. Now they have test governance and people are disenchanted with their performances virtually all over the country.