WEDNESDAY COLUMN by USSIJU MEDANER
It is difficult to hold onto the truth and the realities of every moment for most people with power, or at the corridors of power but this is a dash among the qualities of the Wife of the President, Aisha Buhari. She blends with the activities of state required of her and still finds time to run family affairs.
This has been proved the many times she came out to speak about accountability in governance as in the recent case of the social investment programme. This is not only upon her responsibility as someone at the corridors of power but a concerned citizen of Nigeria. She was at the same time fulfilling the duties of a responsible citizen of the country she loves and cares about. She only raised issues of accountability in governance and has not referred to anyone as corrupt.
We are in an era when, not only are wives of leaders careless about what their spouses are doing but everyone would rather not talk so they won’t fall out of favour. Why would leaders in Zamfara State calculate their speeches before talking? Who, from within, are frowning and speaking against the atrocities and killings going on in Rivers state? How many individuals are already defending the pulling down of certain edifice constructed by immediate past governor by the newly sworn in governor? President Buhari and his wife are a rare breed in this era.
The Wife of the President Aisha Buhari raises alarm of inefficiency in certain areas within because she believes it is the desire of her husband to rid the system of the inefficiencies and absolutely sure she is acting in consonance with her husband’s policy direction. President Muhammadu Buhari did not mince words when he declared his intention to clean up the country from all forms of corruption and corrupt practices. We have seen the alacrity with which corruption is fought in the country regardless of who is involved and where it is found.
Mrs Aisha Buhari, in playing her role towards the success of her husband’s administration took the position of a correcting of perceived anomalies in government businesses. She becomes a leading crusader of change in policies, politics, and administration. She was the one who raised alarm the management of the state house clinic of mismanagement some months to the 2019 general elections.
During the Jonathan Administration, Mrs. Patience Jonathan told Nigerians before the 2015 presidential election that some people are claiming that her husband did not do well during his first tenure that a child who failed a class is supposed to be given the opportunity to repeat the class. It is inconsequential to her that her husband did not meet up to the expectations of Nigerians; all that interested her is winning the election. We all saw nothing abnormal in that statement and its deliverance but we had issues with another woman who believed her husband must make Nigerians proud and sees it as her responsibility to push the government from her little corner.
Instead of finding basis to misinterpret her actions and dispositions, I think we should do more of analysing the effects of her criticisms on governance. Several things have fallen into place for fear of her criticism.
Mrs. Buhari is a Nigerian at the fore with the right to take the position she is taking and she must be appreciated for her uprightness realistic approach towards the affairs of the nation. Another factor we must all take into cognizance is the fact that at no time has the president fumed at the actions and reactions of his wife; that simply implies consonance and support. But the some retard minds sees nothing good in the deeds of the Wife of the President because it is strange to them. They are experts in sycophancy and supporting inefficiency and non-performance. What is the rationale behind the many support for Dieziani and Dasuki till date?
Mrs. Buhari was one instrumental factor to her husband’s victory in the 2019 presidential election as she valiantly led the Women and Youth Presidential Campaign Team (WYPCaT) across the country with boldness. She had achieved her basic objective; ensuring that things are set straight in the Buhari Administration and contributed to the process of service delivery and policy integrity. She told Nigerians we are on course to greatness and the Next Level is more than a slogan.
The sincerity of Mrs. Buhari’s position became more obvious when she maintained her chosen position even after the second tenure of her husband is already settled. She believed the social investment program of the government is not as efficient as it ought to be and she openly asked questions. Knowing fully well that exposing the program as a failure would be a big blow to her husband and his government, she also knows that it is not only about President Buhari as her husband but as the president of Nigeria, and of course she is equally well aware that her position is pleasing to her husband who also want shady deals within the system under him exposed. Good enough, her criticism of the program has yielded results; those involved now know they are accountable and they are giving account. And in the event of malpractices everyone has become conscious of the fact that someone is watching.
To most Nigerians, Mrs. Aisha’s disposition ultimately presents her husband in bad light, diminish the efforts of his government and ultimately provide free energy for those who are opposed to the administration, with or without reason. It is believed in several quarters that the wife should support her husband in all matters regardless of positions and effects or rather should keep mum as if she is not a Nigerian if the happenings within the government breach her personal principles.
I have remarked earlier that the only way to stop corruption in our space and force those in positions of authority from continuous abuse of their offices (and our commonwealth) is for all Nigerians to rise with one voice in condemnation of non-working policies, deceptive projects and corrupt practices. When a man is suspected to have abused the use of a public office, his kinsmen and family should be the first to reprove him and lay him out in the public for all to condemn. When we tour this path, the message that there is no hiding place for corruption and corrupt persons will become a reality.
What we practice now is the philosophy and mask of silence at the corridors of power. Those of us who should take up the responsibility of talking have all exchanged our legal right to disprove for freebies of offices.
The question to ask now will be, in the face of attacks from within and without, should the president’s wife exercise self-restraint and see nothing wrong and unbecoming of the running of government businesses again because her husband is in charge? Would her antagonists become happy if she chooses the path of all wives of presidents before her who were rubber stamps anomalies in governance? How has that benefited us as a country in the past and what benefit would accrue to us from it now?
This is a path we need to follow in our tread towards a better Nigeria. The country that we all want to live in: the Nigeria of our dreams. Mrs Buhari did not side with the ill she suspects in government because it is happening under her husband’s administration, no! She spoke out and will continue to do so. She is the kind of people we need at the corridors of power.
God Bless The Federal Republic Of Nigeria