While we cannot categorically say that President Muhammadu Buhari is fighting corruption because,his cronies in the APC are people with questionable characters who have at some point in time feasted on our Commonwealth. Isn’t it mind boggling that the suspended CJN forgot to declare over one billion naira as required by law?
For clarity of purpose, the focus of this analysis will be ‘Did he or did he not do it? rather than technicalities in law. It all started when an advocacy group came out with an intelligent report indicting the CJN and they submitted the report to the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT). The CCT in an unusually fast manner treats the matter as though it is an *SOS* file in the civil service. The CJN publicly admits he forgot to do the needful, however that was not enough to kill the case. The President initially feigns ignorance, all of a sudden, he is in the know and decides to spit fire by suspending the CJN based on an order from the CCT. His action sparks outrage especially among members of the opposition, the international community and majorly the legal profession whose members have done a good job confusing the average Nigerian based on their divided stand and divergent views on the President and the suspended CJN’s action.
Taking a cursory look at the issue, while consulting the grand norm, you’ll discover that there is a lacuna in the constitution and both sides are feasting on the lacuna. For the Pro Onoghen group he is seen as a victim of circumstances because of his ethnic background and his alleged failure to sympathise with the President and his party. For the Pro Buhari team, Mr.President may be wrong but as far as he is fighting corruption especially in the judiciary that is supposed to be home to people with integrity and the last hope of the common man but is itself stained then who cares if Mr.President’s action is that of a tyrant. Since it exposes a wrongdoing and it is dealing with an offender.
The country is then divided across these two lines and membership of either sides is a function of ethnicity, religion,party affiliation and rationality. The reality is we are at a crossroad and a crucial point in time in our Democracy. Our collective decision as a people towards the disposition of the government of the day will go a long way to determine our future. Remembering our founding father’s labor for independence and democracy. One tends to wonder is the labour of our heroes past not in vain?.
In answering this salient question, we once again have to take a cursory look at the Nigerian state where the present order negates the ideals of our founding father’s. Because the reality now is the system is favorable to a few at the expense of the majority, where people in government see being elected or appointed to serve as an avenue to enrich themselves and their loved ones, where justice is perverted and bought, where at 58 we are still battling with underdevelopment and lack of basic social amenities, where our political parties are without ideologies and people with questionable character, who are not competent enough continue to rule, where the few keep recycling themselves changing positions and political parties at will even though they are not serving the masses as expected, where the government cannot guarantee security of lives and properties and where investments and businesses are failing not because of the unavailability of a market but because of incessant power outage that makes an individual or organization spend huge amount of money buying and maintaining generators, unfavorable government policies and political instability?.
Election is upon us once again and we can’t but pick between the two major available alternative thanks to our unfavourable multi party system. Of the two major party the PDP that was in power for 16years and failed to change the countries status from a developing country to a developed country is fielding a former Vice President perceived as being corrupt by a vast majority of Nigerians and whose President have often time said he is corrupt and incapable to lead the country, the choice of Atiku Abubakar ordinarily makes one with a critical mind marvel considering his past record, questionable character and wealth. On the other hand the ruling All Progressive Congress is once again fielding a former Head of State who once lead a coup overthrowing a Democratic regime, suspending the constitution and who ran an administration that was characterized by autocracy, tyranny, human right abuses among several anomalies. He was eventually shown the way out through a military coup, only to return to politics as a civilian, contesting for presidency and winning after his fourth attempt. Because he is perceived as an anti corruption crusader and a better alternative when compared to the incumbent then, who many saw as corrupt and clueless. He made history defeating a sitting President in an election though the election was marred by irregularities in some parts of the country and himself and the APC promised to bring about change within 4 years. Unfortunately for them,the government is in it fourth year and though it has recorded some giant stride, it is still struggling with fulfilling all it promises and corruption, impunity, insecurity still thrives while our economy is still in a sorry state. To compound issues for the government of the day, the President is seen as been unfit considering his age and his health that saw him leave the country on several occasions for treatment abroad and make some terrible intolerable errors while addressing the press or during political rallies, to make matters worse some of his actions are becoming unbecoming especially when it comes to taking actions that are not in line with the provisions of the constitution such as the suspension of the CJN, unlawful detention of El zazaky and Col.Sambo Dasuki among several other act of executive recklessness.
In reality, the majority want the system sanitized and a change in the status quo but our democracy have failed to bring about the change we desire, and as a result of that many are beginning to consider having a Democratically elected President who will be a tyrant and a dictator with a view to sanitise the system, bring about the change we desire and ensure everyone and anyone regardless of party affiliation, ethnic background, religion who has ever feasted unlawfully and unjustly on our Commonwealth is made to return all he/she took unjustly while also being subjected to punishment without preferential treatment meted out to anyone. At this junction, one tends to ask, should we tolerate and encourage despotic rule from the President and can we trust him with the task of sanitizing the system while putting the law aside, in a bid to quickly bring about the change we all want to see, considering the fact that our democracy has failed to bring about the required change since 1999 ?
JUBA ADEOLA is an unemployed graduate, a freelance writer and social commentator writing with a view to make the world a better place through the power of the pen.