In March, 2015, history was made in Nigeria when an opposition party (All Progressives Congress – APC) having Buhari as its flag bearer and with the mantra of “change”, defeated the incumbent president, Goodluck Jonathan of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) in a keenly contested and tension filled elections.
Unlike other past and present African presidents, president Goodluck Ebele Jonathan sacrificed his personal ambition to safe lives by conceding defeat through a 53-second phone call to president Muhammadu Buhari before the official result was to be announced. Indeed, it was unprecedented in the annals of Nigeria’s history. This statesmanship displayed by Goodluck Jonathan engraved his name on the marble as the first incumbent President to concede defeat following an election.
Nigerians who voted massively for president Muhammadu Buhari (Mr. Integrity) expected so much from him especially his campaign promises. But, seven months down the line, there have been mixed reactions as per his leadership style. Many believe that his body language against corruption is working and that he has made significant progress in the area of security.
Others say he has no policy direction and call him “Baba-go-slow”. Under his watch, the economy is gradually sliding into recession, a significant decline in money circulation and purchasing power, few projects executed, poverty level skyrocketing, rapid infrastructural decay, hunger, starvation, unemployment on the rise and increase in agitation for self-determination particularly among South East region.
This downward trend needs urgent robust response. Buhari’s Administration in 2016, should unveil an economic blueprint that will jumpstart different sectors: Education, Agriculture, Manufacturing, Solid Minerals and Mining, Housing, Energy and transport.
We can take lessons from china that diversified their economy and developed three key sectors that is today, driving the economy of china.
Mr. President should fight corruption, yes and block leakages but he must not be selective in this course.
Remove oil subsidy and use the money to enhance economic growth.
Formulate policies that would create more jobs for the rising unemployed youths.
Diversify the economy, depending less on oil and aggressively pursue agriculture, bringing us back to the days of groundnut pyramid and cocoa boom.
Fulfill his campaign promises devoid of sectionalism to maintain his integrity.
Look inward to explore opportunities in our mineral resources and depending less on international communities for survival of the nation.
Improve on our security situation and reduce cost of governance.
Priority our education sector as well as human capacity development. Being fair to all and address the issues of people agitating for self-determination.
He should avoid a repeat of austerity measure which happened when he was head of state in 1984.
COMPILED BY: JOY NWATEH-LEONARD.