Nigeria, Buhari And His College Of Saints

President Buhari
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Have you ever loved and trusted somebody, and then find out the person does not have fidelity in his or her dictionary? Ask me and I will gladly tell you, Baba don fuckup. The moment the list of PMB crept to the social media domain, my first reaction was to ignore it. After over three months of waiting, the names I saw were our victimizers – actor in the political and economic arena who through their actions and inactions had submerged Nigerian in poverty and underdevelopment. You cannot smack a child and then deny him the right to cry. I am crying because Baba don shit for altar.
I am one supporter of PMB who believed he was ‘San tache’ but now, I know better. Who imagined that for all the three months Nigerians were praying, fasting and crying for ministers, Mr. President was not busy searching for philosopher kings in Oxford Yale, Cambridge Havard, UI, UNN and ABU? Tunde Fagbenle provided the correct answer. “Ours is a rotten society, rotten through and through, and leaders that we produce, no matter how personally elevated, are pulled into the vortex of rottenness that pervades.” One would not need a prophet nor a soothsayer to say that there is an obvious compromise on the part of PMB. And, bearing in mind the immortal words of late Professor Chinua Achebe that “one of the truest test of integrity is its blunt refusal to be compromised,” one will not be wrong to say that the Buhari of yesterday may not be the Buhari of today. Like the parrot, he seems to have realized that in the murky and shark infested backwaters of Nigerian politics if you can’t beat them you join them.
Does it make sense to put new wine in old wine skin or old wine in new wine skin? How can we succeed in killing corruption even as she tries to kill us through a corrupt process and persons? Just like I bemoaned earlier, Olusegun Adeniyi a cerebral and versatile journalist and columnist observed that “these men were around yesterday, they dominate today even as they plot strategies for tomorrow”. Why will a president of a “lonely island of poverty in the midst of vast ocean of material prosperity” bring in woods infected with maggot as cabinet members? Has he forgotten the counsel of Achebe that “he who brings woods infested with maggot must be ready to welcome lizards?
I am optimistic that “Naija go better” somehow, someday, but that does not stop us from looking at the other side of the coin. “Look at the ministerial list and tell me why Nigeria is not doomed. He took six months since his brothers declared him winner to return to Nigeria almost the same set of people that Nigerians asked PDP to sack”. Judging from the names in the ministerial list, Nnaji Obed Isiegbu’s outburst is justified. From the creeks of Warri to the high land of Yola, and from the thick forest of Emekuku to the sandy terrain of Kano, corruption is like an ogbanje child, who keeps her family in mournful mood. With a population of over 140 million citizens, Nigeria, no doubt is blessed with citizens who can tame our widest beast – Corruption – yet he settled for experienced looters and re-cycled old men. I am beginning to think that PMB is either not interested in changing or does not know the type of change Nigerians are expecting from him.
Imagine a cabinet in this lunar and planetary age without any youth. I am crying not only because of the profile of his cabinet members but the fact that Nigerians will soon realize that Baba had commissioned rats to safeguard the fish Nigerians bought on May 28, 2015.
It is going to be a mortal sin if Buhari’s college of saints fails to redeem our chequered political history. Professor Chinua Achebe once observed that “stopping an average Nigerian from corruption is like stopping goats from eating yam”. PMB must realize that his biggest assignment and that of his college of saints is proving Achebe wrong.
I don’t predict that Buhari pitcher will break before he gets to the stream but I am not expecting to see a Nigerian Lee in 2019 or a college of saints who will prove that Julius Nyerere was a Nigerian.
Martin-Hassan Eze, a freelance journalist, writer and columnist, wrote in from Kontagora, Niger State. He can be reached on 09056563790.

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