Yar’adau’s regime of policy inconsistencies

November 6, 2008
5 mins read

Our weekly Edictorial Planning meeting last week, chose as cartoon of the week, a piece that was drawn by Abdulkareem Baba Aminu. The cartoon had a snoozing Umaru Yar’adua on his table while an aide pointed at the ailing man and said that was the “rule of lull”! It was a brillian pun on the mantra of the regime which every passing day exposes as afraud, just like practically everything about the regime itself: the way it was imposed after a fraudulent election; it s geneal disposition; the inability to consistently fight corruption; being hostage to a group of former and serving, governors; the very narrow, provincial core of the regime; an obtrusive and ambitious presidential spouse, just to mention a few! In the Yar’adua presidency, we are witnessing what might potentially be the worst regime in Nigeria’s history. It is clear that we have in power today, an incomptetent president who is equally spineless!


If my assessment sounds so harsh and pessimistic, it has come precisely from the mixed signals that the regime issues on practically every decision. Yar’adua is so annoyingly inconsistent and indecisive, that I personally think that after a year I power, we may conclude that the man just does not fit the frame of the president of Nigeria! A hallmark of the spineless regime is the wont to taking decisions and after coming under the pressure of its corrupt sponsors, it ends up retreating. The examples of this are legion, but the most recent one was the decision taken to regject the hosting of the Under-17 World Cup. The Yar’adua regime had announced to the world that Nigeria was not going to host the competition, given the outrageous sum requested by those saddled with the organization of the tournament. A whopping thirty five billion naira had been padded up by the same forces that had  been milking Nigerian sports: they milked Nigeria during the 1999 World Youth Championship; they stole us bling during COJA in 2003 and they became just as brazen with the 2009 chamionship.


The nation was taken aback by the amount of money that Amos Adamu’s sidekicks in the LOC requested especially because a lot of those things they were asking for had been the basis of the corrupt and inflated contracts of COJA. So when the regime announced that Nigeria was not going to host the event, there was a lot of understanding and support for the decision. The truth was that Nigeria was getting an opportunity to solve a few problems in one fell swoop: reject a championship of fraudulent budgeting and then moving a step further to sack Amos Adamu, the mandarin that is at the heart of all the controversies which dog Nigerian sports. It was Amos Adamu who packed the so-called LOC with his cronies and sidekicks; the same Adamu has run our sports more to feather his own nest than really do our national bidding. Today, Amos Adamu is everywhere: Director General, WAFU, CAF and FIFA; he is one of the richest civil servants in Nigeria’s history, just as our sports have become increasingly disorganized! Well, if Nigerians felt the Yar’adua regime was going to do something good for once in sports, we were proved wrong within 48 hours!


Umaru Yar’adua ate his words and bowed to the pressure mounted by Amos Adamu using the cabal of governors! The game was on again and in one of the most cruel expressions of regime irresponsibility, Abdurrahman Gimba, the Sprots Minister that spent the better part of the past year fighting against the monumental corruption, cronyism and fraud in the sporting system was sacked by Yar’adua; not a word of reprimand for  and his sidekicks and cronies in the LOC! Corruption pays; long live corruption! No wonder, those who ordinarily should have been thrown out of the LOC at least, if not thrown into jail, suddently found their voices again having received the imprimatur of the regime to carry on. They returned to the National Assembly with a budget which still demands for over thirty five billion naira and their allies in the Senate have also been talking tough. Heineken Lokp[obiri, the Senate Sports Committee chair, told us that we were making too much noise about the chicken change of just thirty five billion naira that was being requested for the event; after all, South Africa is spending far more for the 2010 World Cup. It is that Type of unguarede insensitivity that becomes the consequence of the policy inconsistencies of the Yar’adua regime.


Those who set great store by the regime in power today are living in cloud cuckoo land of delusion. Umaru Yar’adua resembles one on heavy sedation and is therefore sleepwalking through governance. The man I shostage to a set of vicious power mongers and is not a free agent. But he enjoys the trappings of power, even when it does not translate into benefit for the Nigerian people. In the meantime, his coteries of hangers-on are milking the opportunities while despair spreads in the land. Sometimes, the whole country resembles a big hamlet where every inhabitant has been drugged. We can all be snoozing along with the man who pretends to be reuling our country, but is a spineless hostage without much competence as a leader. At the end of a four year term, under the watch of Umaru Yar’adua, not uch would have changed for the better for the Nigerian people. Policy inconsistencies are merely a reflection of the serious crisis which Nigeria was saddled with when Umaru Yar’adua was rigged into power; it couldn’t have been any other way. Nigeria lost eight years under Obasanjo and it is now poised to waste four or even eight years, under the spineless regime of Umaru Yar’adua!


The Obama moment of history.

Like a lot of people around the world, I kept awake to watch the returns of the American election today (Tuesday/Wednesday). It was indeed a remarkable moment in history and as I saw the tears flow freely from the face of Rev. Jesse Jackson, I could not hold my own tears either. In my mind, I saw the stream of African history in American life: the capture of Africans; the middle passgage; the arrival in the new world and slavery; the Underground Railroad; abolition; racioa discriministion; the civil rights movement and the emergence of Martin Luther King and Malcolm X and finally, the election of Barrack Obama! In electing Obama, the American people have made a major contribution to the strggle to deat bigotry and they should be admired and honoured. They have also rejected the criminal decision taken by the Bush administration in their economy and the deepening of the unpopularity of American imperialism.


Around the world, Barack Obama has excited the imaginations of people and there is so much hope set for the new president and the possible changes he might bring. Obama has a very vosmopolitan and brilliant mind; he is educated and knows about the contradictions of the world far more than the outgoing fanatic; George Bush. But Barack Obama scares me about his views in respect of the Middle East. He has repeatedly underlined his support for the Zionist state of Lsrael, and just before the elections, he addressed the Lsraeli lobby during which he made a most right wing endorsement of the Zionist state without condemning its apartheid policies against the Palestinians. That might be his Achilles’ heel. The USA is an imperialist power and one individual cannot change its nature; not even Obama!

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