Relative to where we are coming from, 50:50 is a fair score, however it is not nearly good enough considering where Nigeria is today and where it needs to be. Before reviewing the Buhari/Osinbajo score, let’s make a quick mention of the grades of the previous administrations:
Scoring 50% in anti-corruption (going after his enemies mostly, but it was a good start), 10% in development (due to all developmental policies being corrupt and exploitative privatization, ala, cabalization), with 70% in public and investor confidence, but 10% in Security (allowing Boko Haram and MEND to evolve and take root), and 20% in poverty emancipation, on his watch, the Obasanjo administration scored a 32% overall.
Late Umaru Yar’adua (PDP)
Late Yar’adua who appeared to be a go-slow president scored 85% on Security (totally eradicating Boko Haram and initiating comprehensive deradicalization plans to maintain the success; plans immediately abandoned by his successor, Goodluck Jonathan; he failed to hit 90%+ in Security due to the errors and construct of the MEND Amnesty, for offering a blanket amnesty in spite of those with death on their hands, and wasting capital training the ex-militants abroad); Yar’adua scored 50% in Confidence (being a first to publicly declare his assets, but thought to be going slow, while he was actually consolidating his power and actively pursuing the corrupt cabal who put him there, the public thought he was going slow not realizing he was seriously and riskily going after the big fish). He scored 80% in poverty emancipation (reducing pump fuel costs e.t.c.), he scored 60% in development (very unlike his predecessor Yar’adua set out to overturn the corrupt privatizations of his predecessor, an act that has been suspected to have led to poisoning to speed-up his death), he scored 50% in anti-corruption (starting slow but then as previously mentioned, Yar’adua at the time of his death had given an order to the EFCC to go after anyone including his predecessor Obasanjo, which according to Wikileaks got him highly irritated and demonstrably and actionably perturbed). Overall late Yar’adua scored 73%.
Goodluck Jonathan (PDP)
Immediate former Nigerian president Goodluck Jonathan scored 0% on development (entirely all his developmental projects were executed at 4 times the true cost with crippling foreign loans in spite of Nigeria’s oil income with oil selling steadily at a very high rate; further his privatization scam which followed the Obasanjo model saw public assets gifted to the cabal at one-sixth their market value, like the PHCN case). Jonathan scored 0% in public confidence, losing this even before he was elected the minute he banned the Nigerian national soccer team for losing in the world cup; he continued to tank confidence inspiring series of protests and mass discontent with scandals upon scandals and upsetting policies including the sudden petrol subsidy removal of January 2012 which led to mass protests. College lecturer strikes, an almighty oil goddess minister of petroleum, protecting and freeing convicted corrupt officials and cabal, and total loss of control of his regime sent his numbers to the floor if not below; Jonathan scored 0% in poverty alleviation with not a single scheme to alleviate the suffering of the masses (the former president lost millions of jobs due to poor policies and terror which rendered the entire northeast jobless; while claiming success with Agriculture this is analytically contested because with the northeast farming belt out of production and as evidenced by the continuous increase in food cost the figures from the Agriculture ministry cannot be factually supported or scientifically substantiated). Goodluck Jonathan scored 0% in anti-corruption (throughout his tenure corruption was rather redefined in positive light and actively defended and while not a single corrupt official was reasonably sentenced, jailed corrupt grandmasters were given presidential pardons). And to cap the list, on Security, the Jonathan administration rather than abate terror, promoted terror and insecurity with top government Security officials and its Army Chiefs being directly accused and indicted in supporting, sponsoring terror, crimes against humanity, protecting terrorists and terror masterminds and war crimes. This administration actually employed and heavily paid terrorists in preference to the State security department to “protect” State infrastructure. MEND, Boko Haram, Ombatse and the like enjoyed impunity and became official franchises of the administration used to drain the economy and assist the administration make political gains. Because in this scoring we are not giving negatives, we again score the previous Jonathan administration 0% on terror. In total, Goodluck Ebele Jonathan scored 0%.
President Muhammadu Buhari (APC)
While it is obviously too early to grade the performance of this administration just two weeks into its tenure, we must recognize that in spite of the precluding drastically debilitated state the Buhari regime received Nigeria from the PDP regimes and Babangida and co dictatorships past, a year is made up of only 27 copies of two-weeks and everyday counts in rescuing Nigeria from the abyss and final collapse.
On Public confidence, so far the Buhari administration has scored 40%. A slight blunder and publicity clarity delay by the new media team got anxious Nigerians momentarily worried that the Buhari/Osinbajo team were not anxious to publicly declare their assets, though they were operating within the time frame as approached by the Yar’adua government who likewise first waited for CCB verification (a new media team, not necessarily being strategists or working with a strategic advisory team could be responsible for this). A do-nothing approach to the happenings in the senate has further tanked public confidence. While this administration’s rapid and serious approach to Boko Haram terror attempts to raise confidence, the refusal of the APC government to sack and investigate the implicated Army Chiefs, NSA and other State security personnel and redress the many death-sentenced junior officers keeps confidence ratings at a low. Sending the Army Chiefs to Borno, while seeming like a punishment of sorts fails to address the major Security accusations that resulted in deaths of tens of thousands and loss of Nigeria’s territorial integrity, and the electoral manipulations these Chiefs the administration is cuddling, stand seriously accused of. Over reliance and patronage of foreign colonialist nations is also not a good look for the administration. In Security, while the swift action and Command center relocation gives positive ratings, a lack of serious and if needed, repercussive note to Nigeria’s Boko Haram implicated neighbours, and for the aforementioned lapses – retaining the failed Security heads — the administration scores a low 40%. On poverty alleviation, the Buhari APC government scores a 60% due to its serious policy at federal and state levels to restructure cabinets, downsizing them to reduce waste. A promise to reduce the salaries of the president is a positive note in leading by example. On anti-corruption the government scores a natural 50% as already, leading up to its inauguration and continuing, loot is being returned. A swift warning to Ministries to withhold payments to contractors, gave a promise of seriousness on graft. Courting known corrupt party financiers and officials and sending these as government representatives as well as being accompanied by them to foreign functions eats seriously into the new government’s anti-corruption posture and promise as also does the inauguration promise not to witch hunt past administrators who have wrecked the nation and continue to do so having purchased all state assets and land and established usurping utility oligopolies with looted commonwealth. However with the posture of the EFCC on corruption thus-far, with the dismissal of charges on the 19 billion naira fraud case against former Bayelsa state governor, Timipre Sylva (APC), the administration is not looking very good and honest in its first days. Will this administration like the past Obasanjo one go after enemies and protect friends? Finally on development, the Buhari government scores a 40%, having not presented any radical strategy to positively transform the nation. We gave him a score on this sector based on his decisiveness in tackling Boko Haram terror as there can never be development without first establishing security of life and property of Nigerians and ultimately, investor confidence that pegs on a stable environment. Also rumours of the new president being in charge of the ministry of petroleum are reassuring towards developmental success.
In conclusion, while it is indeed too early to gauge the young Buhari/Osinbajo government, it is necessary that we are not carried away having been deprived and rendered totally hopeless during the immediately previous administration, to unduly appraise the current administration. A compassionate score of 50 (the score is artificially inflated to the shortness of the measured time span) while not being a fail is rather too low for Nigeria in need of serious, swift and sensible transformation. It is important to note that 50:50 means, 50 good and 50 bad. 100% and higher is attainable. We, a nation of 170 million resilient, capable and talented citizens have the capacity to score much higher than we currently are. We strongly implore the new government to step-up.
Dr. Peregrino Brimah; http://ENDS.ng [Every Nigerian Do Something] Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Twitter: @EveryNigerian