AN OPEN LETTER TO THE PRESIDENT OF THE FEDERAL REPUBLIC OF NIGERIA. HIS EXCELLENCY, PRESIDENT GOODLUCK EBELE JONATHAN

His Excellency,

Happy new year to you Mr. President. I trust it met you in high spirits like it met me.

I promised myself a long time ago to write you sir but I am happy it took me this long to fulfill this promise as it could not have come at a more propitious time because as we both know sir; you are busy trying to get re-elected. Permit me to state sir, that I encourage you to seek the mandate of the Nigerian people once more, the past six years haven’t been so easy, everyone can see you need four more years in order to set aright the very few anomalies that has bedeviled your administration. I would likely do the same too if I were in your shoes so I appreciate that you took a little time out of your schedule to read this short letter of mine to you sir.

Your name sir is a peculiar one and I am sure you have been told that times too numerous for count. But sir, I hope you are as concerned as I am that lady luck may be cheating on you as she seems to be ready to elope with someone else. Perhaps it’s time you wore a new look and hone your wooing skills yet again before the situation readily defies redemption.

Let me state for the record sir that I am anti-PDP. However, let not your nose wrinkle in disgust as yet, should you care to know sir, I am also anti-APC/ACN/AC/ANPP. I will let you in on why sir, Nigerian political parties are denude of party ideals. Hardly can one be differentiated from the other, nor the players in the arena. For some of us watching from outside, there is little distinction between a bug and a roach which includes their relative sizes. Some of the common features they share is that they are both dirty insect, pests, harbingers of discomfort, they favour operating in darkness and are harmful to human existence and health. The analogy immediate above bears much in semblance with the various political parties in Nigeria hence the reason why shifting camp comes relatively easy and is actually encouraged.

I know sir that too many persons have expressed their sentiments as to how disappointed they are at you on the lack of apparent qualitative display of the efficiency of government during your administration so far. I will therefore refrain from expressing the same sentiments owing to two reasons sir which are;

  1. Its impact is already wilted down as you have heard it from all sorts of persons and personality that it has become to you as if it were a lie.
  2. To say I’m disappointed in your governance is an understatement sir, it cannot nearly capture what I feel sir.

Mr. President, I am sure you have a clearer view and understanding of the polity which affords you luxury of the knowledge that it would be extremely difficult for any contestant who hails from the South-South Geopolitical zone of Nigeria to emerge as the president of this country any time soon. The reason is not far-fetched sir, it is because you have not done enough to allow for Nigerians to take such risk as we took in electing you the president of this country four years ago. You may have just killed that chance with your bare hands like a child would playfully twist the neck of an injured bird

I would like to draw your mind to a famous African proverb quoted by Chinua Achebe in his Things Fall Apart that; “Those whose palm kernels were cracked for them by a benevolent spirit should not forget to be humble”. I know sir that you are as convinced as many Nigerians and I that your ‘palm kernels’ were cracked for you by a benevolent spirit. You attained on a platter of gold when by a stroke of luck you became the president of Nigeria upon the death of President Yar’adua and I was one of the happiest persons in Nigeria not for his death but because you were his constitutional successor. I was so ecstatic you would think we were somehow related. I in fact campaigned and voted for you in 2011 when you started this tenure that may be wound up soon. Many were the reasons Mr. President although I will be inclined to say that the foremost reason was because you are the first Nigerian President to be a PhD holder. I thought that same would transcend into laudable achievements and advancement for the country sir but I have since learnt the errors of my way. My opinions sir should not be taken so lightly because you found it so easy to condemn the attack in Paris sir when the one in your backyard at Baga goes unmentioned and uncondemned. Of course you will remember this because it roused a response from South African Julius Malema, a particular scything and vituperative one at that and I am particularly disheartened that such a comment could be directed at the president of my country. I readily recall that you found it easy to continue on the scheduled rally at Kano a day after the famed ‘Nyanya’ bomb blast, a more responsive President would have cancelled it in honour of the victims. The above are some of the facts that informed my sentiments and the list sir goes end-to-end. Permit me to enquire from you sir, for how long shall we tarry here.

Permit me Your Excellency to draw your mind towards a fact known too well to you. Gen. Muhammadu Buhari has been vying for your office since 2003. By my calculations sir, he has been at this for twelve years and still counting. He would be contesting for the fourth time sir. In all the times the good General has been contesting, never has he posed as much threat to any of the principal co-contestant not even to you when you ran for this office in 2011. However, by your own doing sir, he has not only achieved notoriety, he has achieved improved relevance, credibility and a hoard of seemingly loyal followers. By virtue of a concerted combination of your actions and inactions, you now have to yourself a worthy adversary or should I say co-contestant. I also crave your indulgence to attempt to make a list, albeit non-exhaustive of the aforementioned acts and omissions of your good self which may well kick you out of office at the next s-election. Beg your pardon sir, election. They includes among others;

  • The kidnapped Chibok Girls
  • The NNPC Scam
  • The Police pension fund debacle
  • The 20Billion naira that took a stroll out of the Nigerian treasury
  • The constant and increasingly becoming ever present bomb blasts
  • The Immigration exam scam that wasted the lives of some unsuspecting youths.
  • The increasingly and unapologetically erratic power supply
  • The skyrocketing NEPA bills for light no one used
  • The endless industrial actions crippling the weakened educational structure
  • The doctors strike…

This list is a very long one Mr. President so I’ll rather nip it in the bud here and save both of us some precious time.

Your Excellency, I sincerely sympathise with you as these issues are quite handful even for a president in a developed country where there are structures in place to handle these kind of things. Believe me sir, I feel your pain. In fact sir, I am sure one of the reasons you would not throw in a towel is because it has occurred to you that there are saboteurs in every sector of the Nigerian government and economy who are frustrating all your good plans and efforts. I am sure sir that it must have also crossed your mind that voting you out of the office of the President of this great nation must have been their master plan hence all these nefarious happenings that have been a companion to your administration for the past six years. No wonder you feel betrayed sir, I would feel betrayed too if I was in your shoes sir. Perhaps that was why you found it so easy to condemn the attack in Paris sir when the one in your backyard at Baga goes unmentioned and uncondemned. I readily recall that you found it easy to continue on the scheduled rally at Kano a day after the famed ‘Nyanya’ bomb blast.

Far be it sir that I try to allege that you have achieved little or nothing for the whole duration of your governance so far. Should you care to know sir, I am also of the view that Nigeria is a very peculiar country. She is one where tribalism, nepotism and sentiments influences too many of governmental decisions. I am quite aware sir that you could have been swift and decisive with rooting out the various insurgencies bedeviling your administration but for the fact that it may be misinterpreted as a deliberate war on some religious sects or tribe. In this sir, I share and appreciate your sentiments. I am sure this accounts for why you were noticeably livid in some recent interviews and stylishly berate Nigerians for daring to blame you for all the issues the country is facing as if governance is a function of the ruler to the exclusion of the ruled.

Mr. President, they say a country deserves the leader it has because such a leader is usually a product of the country in question. However, this country does not deserve four more years of your leadership sir in my informed opinion, in six years we have had enough ‘taste of your pudding’ and any more is sure to purge us. I think I would be more than right to say Nigerians are disappointed in what you have to offer. However sir, do not presume I’m in bed with the opposition party. I will rather I lie with a nest of vipers that these ones who have no stories to peddle than ‘change’. It’s too much of a cliché. They can’t seem to look progressive without adopting an anti-Jonathan stance and I am not taken in by their ruse. My initially analogy on the ‘bug’ and the ‘roach’ I request sir that you again aver your mind to.

Sir, in the name of everything and everyone that you hold dear to you, may I plead that you keep your supporters and your support force in check in all the events leading up to and during the elections. By the day sir, we are receiving increasingly swelling reports of how members of party A or party B are burning houses, schools, killing themselves all because of your ambition. Elections will come and go sir, and I wish that you do all that is in your power to ensure that it goes without bloodshed. We have had too much of this recently in this country.

I am but one of the over 120million Nigerians but I know sir that a lot of Nigerians share my sentiments.

LONG LIVE THE FEDERAL REPUBLIC OF NIGERIA!!!

Written by Wole Ayodele-Fash (wolespeaks@gmail.com; wolespeaks.blogspot.com)

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