The major discussion on the lips of every politically inclined Nigerian is the score card of the President Mohammadu Buhari led change government.
Having placed the president on a scale to measure his performance in the economy and security, we’ll look at other key areas of governance in the concluding part of this two part series.
FOREIGN POLICY: It is no longer news that Nigerians indiaspora are finding it hard to earn the trust of people in their host countries. Also, Nigerian businessmen are not having to good with sealing deals because of the bad
publicity the country has gotten in years past and in countries, Nigeria and indeed Nigerians are treated like a plague that should be avoided.
As the leader of a country in dire need in need of image re-branding, President Buhari did not waste time in visiting strategic countries where he filled the loopholes that existed in our bilateral relationship while coming home with some good deals for the country banking on his integrity. Although many people have tagged his numerous trips out of the country as mere junkets, we can proud ourselves in saying we have reinforced our ties with the likes of the United States of America, United Kingdom, France, China, Saudi Arabia, South Africa and a host of many others.
HEALTH: Not much have happened in the health sector in the past one year. After taking five months to appoint a sustainable health minister, It has taken almost forever for the health ministry to step on the pedal.
The lassa fever outbreak we had a couple of months ago was poorly handled hence the spread of the disease which claimed dozens of lives many parts the country. We’ve also recorded pockets of strikes in the health sector within the
last one year.
On the positive side, the health minister has promised to renovate and equip 10,000 Primary Healthcare Centres (PHCs). It is however worrisome that this promise was not captured in the 2016 budget. The health sector has been largely quite but their is still room for improvement.
AGRICULTURE: Apart from the flag-off of the rice planting season in Kebbi state that saw the federal government splash billions of Naira to support rice farmers has yielded dividends, agricultural sector would have been docile save for the
violent clashes between Fulani herdsmen and crop farmers over farmland encroachment and the proposed move to import grass seedlings as well as the creation of a grazing commission bill to abate.
There’s also the problem of plunge in food supply in the country as seen is that scarcity of tomato (which has been blamed on ‘Tomato Ebola’ -a destructive moth that eats up the leaves and fruits of the important Nigerian staple food) across the country.
There is little or nothing that one can say about the policy direction of the Agricultural Ministry.
EDUCATION: Like many other sectors of our national life, the education sector has been very stagnant. Achievements if there’s any have remained vague. The proposed move to start school feeding and the employment of 500,000 school
teachers still remains in the pipeline. We cannot tell which way their policies are directed.
ENVIRONMENT: President Buhari’s move to clean up the polluted lands of the Niger Delta is quite laudable. Paperworks have been concluded and the clean up is billed to begin soonest. It is also worthy of note to mention the President’s trips to conferences where climate change was discussed like the climate change summit in Paris.
Recently 4 Nigerian cities, Onitsha, Aba, Umuahia and Kaduna were ranked among the top 20 most polluted cites in the world with Onitsha topping the list that studied 3,000 cities in the world.
While the federal government may not be directely involved in cleaning cities, it is worthy of note because it happened within the last one year. The ministry of environment have never been a one to always take the headlines of our national dailies, but it wouldn’t be wrong to say that they haven’t performed badly.
ANTI CORRUPTION: One the major reasons why Nigerians voted president Buhari into power is his promise to fight corruption and he did stamp his foot on the ground with his anti graft war.
The EFCC stepped up to it’s duties and clamped down on alleged corrupt persons -with the arrest of the likes of the former National security Adviser Colonel Sambo Dasuki, former NIMASA DG Mr Akpogbolokemi, former PDP national publicity secretary Chief Olisa Metuh and a host of many others.
There anti graft war has so far been greeted with criticism by those who think the probes are one sided, calling it a witch hunt and a personal vendetta against the political enemies of the president most of who are members of the opposition Peoples Democratic Party. Many have said that selective justice is no justice and have called on the president to spread the anti graft war to both sides of the divide.
Nigerians are yet to see the change they were promised. It is important to note that May 29 will mark the end of the first quarter of the president Mohammadu Buhari led change administration which leaves plenty room for improvements and we’ll remain hopeful that the change will come.
Good bless Nigeria and happy democracy day in advanced!