Obviously, the theory has been proved empty. The international community and some individuals predicted doom if any of the two major contestants in the 2015 presidential election, President Goodluck Jonathan of People Democratic Party (PDP) or General Muhammadu Buhari of All Progressive Party (APC) lost the election. But in every contest, there will be a winner and loser. The atmosphere was tense as tension was high and deep in the heart of concern Nigerians about how socio-economic atmospheres of our dear nation will look during and after the 2015 general elections especially presidential election which turned out to be peaceful, fair and acceptable.
By and large, in a tough political contest like we just witnessed, rampage and bloodshed may occur with perennial crisis taking over peaceful atmosphere of a nation. In most dramatic manner, we have seen the incumbent President Goodluck Jonathan conceding defeat and elected President Muhammadu Buhari acknowledging the gesture and restating his commitment to peaceful transition.
At this juncture, President-elect, Gen. Buhari deserves more of sympathy than congratulations. He rode on the crest of the change mantra to attain the historic victory of defeating an incumbent president. The change he promised during his campaigns has hit the desire of citizens and raised their expectations. Nigerians want socio-economic change of their lives right away from the day his is sworn-in as president on May 29, 2015. We need education that will produce employable graduates while poverty index needs to be improved. The sick economy needs to be healed, there should be moral discipline in the management of government expenditures as we expect corruption to be drastically reduced and security of life and property is made a premium. To whom much is given, much is expected and probably, the President-elect has recognized this fact.
In his acceptance speech shortly after receiving his certificate of return from INEC Gen. Buhari observed that ‘I realize that the expectation of our people today is as high as their commitment to change has been strong and their belief in us is unshaken. While we pledge to bring and doing our best without delay, we would like to appeal to them to appreciate the gravity of our situation, so that we become more realistic in our expectations’.
Owing to his vast experience of leadership and political commitments, Nigerians believe that Buhari’s administration will do better than past ones. However, age is not on his side to bring forth the Nigeria we seek and to actively supervise the task of overhauling the economy and reshaping bartered institutions as he did as military head of state. Hence there is urgent need for critical selection of his think-tank members based on previous antecedents. He could consider names like Governor Rotimi Amaechi of Rivers State, Governor Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso of Kano State, former governor of Kwara Sate, Senator Bukola Saraki, Senator George Akume, and others whose agility, enthusiasm, honesty, resilience and political ingenuity cannot be compromised.
Since by the zoning formula, Senator Kwankwaso cannot be the Senate President or deputy, he may end up chairing a committee befitting his previous experiences like Committee on Defence and Security or Committee on Federal Capital Territory (FCT).
On second thought, Kwankwaso can be better utilized not as a legislator who makes law for good governance but by playing active roles as member of Federal Executive Council.
It would not be out of place to even recommend Kwankwaso’s nomination for Minister of Federal Capital Territory in onerous desire to transform the city using the magic wind he did in Kano city during his second tenure. It was not surprising when the state he governed which is the most populous state in Nigeria, also produced highest number of votes to the in-coming administration partly due to his influence, intelligent acumen and political calculations.
The massive infrastructure and improved facilities during his tenure in Kano can be replicated in Abuja. We have seen our past elected senators sacrificed their legislative duties to serve as Ministers. Senator Aliero of Kebbi State and Senator Bala Mohammed of Bauchi State are clear examples. Surprisingly, they also served as Ministers of FCT.
The incoming administration requires individuals that could push for radical and progressive transformation without fear or favour. They should be trusted and reliable allies who have mass supports and loyalty. In fact Nigerians will enjoy the real dividends of democracy when charismatic and competent leaders are assigned to a portfolio that befit the status of the past accomplishment.
Wuye District, Abuja