BY JONAH OBAJEUN
In December 2014, yours sincerely consulted its archive to reel out his creative prophesies about the crumbling house of clay of the PDP and the sweeping effect of the just amalgamated opposition – APC.
In the preamble to that archival literal resurgence, I wrote that the treatise was premised on the threshold of APC’s amalgamation – a conglomeration of angry politicians, selfish power brokers, and cheated souls, yet wearing the face of progressive and pseudo-progressive humans who needed personal political preservation.
I went further to write that this same feared amalgamation had thrown up a grandpa of necessity at the most virulent time, a grandpa who had craved to be born in 3 different eras but failed, alluding to the contradiction of philosophies that had stayed with us from time immemorial.
Having worked barefooted with history, we got to the juncture of confusion where we had to make recourse to wisdom. Then at 72, Buhari became a political source for wild illumination to lighten up the dark mood of the country. This became a mirage as we have been in perpetual dark mood!
While the country reeked with ethnophobic malice, denizens waited for APC to be militantly patriotic, to showcase its puritanical prudence, its ascetic frugality, its stout refusal to cover corruption, its nationalist rebuff of western interlopers, its economic offensive, its stirring and soulful rhetoric against indiscipline, national self-abasement and above all, its heroic attempt to recreate the momentum of the golden mid-seventies. Almost four years after, the waiting game continues!
To students of short-term, President Buhari, for too many times, gave failure a chance. His stasis approach to safeguarding the nation from marauding herders and armed bandits, his regrettable tactic of handling the volatility of our FOREX market, his slow pace at reforming revenue generating agencies and processes to ease the business environment, his uninspiring approach in building investors’ confidence, his indecisiveness in confronting corruption tendencies within his cabinet, his brimming distaste to forge a political synergy with the National Assembly in managing critical aspects of the economy, his limited understanding of how to rally nationals in forging a common identity – a precursor to building a cohesive society fastened to the foundation of patriotism, are failures that would haunt him to the next polls.
Wearing that sense of short-termism, the only thing that President Buhari has going for him is the Social Investment Programme and his naming and shaming approach to fighting corruption. Short-term theorists have argued that the failure of President Buhari in the short-term has unfortunately reinforced PDP – a former failure at short-term. If the APC administration had leveraged quick wins with economic offensives and deployed nationalistic approach to security management, PDP, ideally, should never have had the temerity to throw up its hands as a sign of presence.
More worrying is that we now have twittering mob and angry young citizens who prefer PDP’s type of failure to APC’s. Sadly, we are a witness to an historical milestone in the life of our country where a failure is reinforcing another failure, insofar we are wearing our sense of short-term.
However, I have engaged in debates with those who belong to the school of long-term. To them, President Buhari’s investment in infrastructural evolution and economic diversification with long term impact cannot be brushed aside with a wave of the hand. It is an unprecedented investment, they argued. But to a generation whose sense has been synched with technological miracle, what cannot reek in benefits now is not worth debating. It is a generation of short-term, what wins with it are quick wins.
Nonetheless, we must not go back to where we are coming from. We must not yield to our wasteful past when we wasted our God-given resources, when we wasted our talents and prodigious human endowments, when we wasted our tomorrow at the altar of our wasted yesterday, when we wasted ourselves with savage resolve and when we wasted a gifted nation even as we almost wasted the destiny of the Black race.
Obajeun writes from Lagos. He tweets via @Obajeun