PMB: A glittering record of service

PMB: A glittering record of service
By Emmanuel Umohinyang

Social Commentator & Political Analyst

Slowly but surely, what started like a ship leaving the harbor now appears like one bound for the shore, as President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration gets set to anchor, having served the constitutionally approved two terms of eight years

For an administration that set sail in very turbulent waters when it’s took charge of affairs at that very perilous period when things were no doubt far from rosy.

The administration, on like that of the Peoples Democratic Party inherited an empty treasury and armory even as most state of the federation were owing salaries.

Worst still, earnings from petroleum which remains the nation’s major revenue earner had dipped to an all time low.

Even national security was in tatters, as even Abuja, the seat of power had been overrun by criminal elements and yearly national parades only took place in a well guided Aso Rock.

This was not helped by the fact that the morale of Officers and Men of the security forces was at an all time low. Given the scenario of that period, only few leaders could face such challenges wrought on the nation by sixteen years of PDP misrule. So terrible was the situation that billions of naira meant for arms purchase for the armed forces was squandered by the PDP apparatchik and their hirelings.

Emmanuel Umohinyang Social Commentator & Political Analyst
Emmanuel Umohinyang
Social Commentator & Political Analyst

But with an uncommon sense of character, President Buhari braved the odds, tackling the challenges from day one.

For a man not at home with pretence, he is not somebody who patronise people or double speaks. Even where you disagree with him, you are assured that he is not doing anyone’s bidding. He does things on the basis of conviction. He, l must admit is difficult to pleased but reward hardwork and excellent. He has the power to persuade and inspire others to the heights they might have thought unattainable and there is honestly in all he does and has left no one in doubt from inception that his goals was to right the wrongs of the past.

Even the media was stunned when the President quietly left the Party organized to welcome his administration into office.

For Buhari, the task ahead was no tea party as it required all the needed seriousness to put the nation on the right track.

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Eight years down the line, even critics of the administration will no doubt agree that the outgoing President has lived up to expectation in the midst of daunting challenges.

Unlike in 2015, Buhari’s worst critics will readily agree that Nigeria is safer today than what the administration met on ground, thanks to the lofty height attained in that sector. These include the record acquisition of Tucano aircraft, fighter jets and helicopters to battle Boko-Haram and other elements who once held the nation by the jugular.

This is aside procuring 160 MRAPS, 150 Trucks and 60 APCs to boost the level of troops for operational readiness and efficiency.

The same gesture was extended to the Navy, Police Customs, Civil Defence and other security agencies who are by far better equipped under the Buhari Presidency.

Little wonder calm has been reported in most parts of the country, including the North East, where Boko-Haram have since fled from.

Even the farmers/herdsmen conflict has since become history unlike days when it was well pronounced in most affected communities.

The fact that Nigeria is producing more food today is a testament to the worthy efforts put into that venture by the government.

The nation’s economy which was in comatose has been rejuvenated, thanks to the ingenuity of the Buhari administration. This is courtesy of the diversification of the economy as promised by the APC administration.

Unlike in past years, other critical sectors like agriculture, solid minerals and mining are today attracting huge sums of revenue to government coffers. Another major achievement is the legislative reforms of his administration which led to the successful passage of the petroleum industry bill (PIB) into law, Electoral Act 2022, Money Laundering (Prevention and Prohibition) Act 2022, Terrorism Act 2022, Proceeds of Crime Act 2022, Mutual Assistance in Criminal Matters Act 2019, Police Trust Act 2019, Nigeria police Act 2020, Not Too Young to Run Act 2018, The Discrimination Against Persons with Disabilities Act, and many Executive Orders and Constitutional Alterations were equal signed under President Buhari given the strategic importance to the nation’s economy.

The PIB was a bill that despite its immense potentials could not be passed by successive administrations under the PDP. Closely connected, is the unbundling of the Nigeria National Petroleum Cooperation (NNPC) which has now been made a true business venture contributing to the national economy for the first time in our history.

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Nigeria would also not forget Mr. President in a hurry, in view of his infrastructural revolution covering roads, airports, sea ports, bridges, housing, Oil and Gas reforms, Mines and Steel development, Agriculture, Education, Health, Creative lndustry, Sports and even dead rail track were revived and new ones built.

The Abuja, Lagos, Portharcourt, Aminu Kano and many other airports are today sights to behold, courtesy of the outgoing administration. Our railway stations – Portharcourt to Maiduguri, Lagos to Ibadan, Kano to Kaduna, Abuja to Kaduna, ltakpe to Warri, and over 300 Wagons, Coaches, Locomotives was purchased which of course has created several thousands of direct and indirect jobs for Nigerians and many others have the stamp of President Buhari.

This is aside giant strives recorded across other critical sectors, including power by expanding the generation, transmission and distribution capability, information technology and more. Social investment to the poor, increase in workers salaries and many more welfare packages for Nigerians would also be remembered.

Talking about roads, Nigerians are appreciative of President Buhari for establishing the Presidential lnfrastructure Development Fund which gave rise to the completion of over 8,352 km of roads and bridges namely Lagos-Ibadan express way, East-West road, Ilorin-Ogbomosho, Abuja- Kaduna-Kano Daul Carriageway, Oshodi- Oworonshoki, the Second Niger bridge and many others too numerous to mention.

The same feat was achieved in the fight against corruption, as the administration not only prosecuted looters, it also jailed many regarded as untouchables, including Ex-governors Jolly Nyame, Joshua Dariye, and many others.

Corruption in his administration was also battled as a former Secretary to the government of the federation under his watch was made to face the law over alleged corruption, same for the Accountant General of the federation who is still facing criminal charges.

Given Buhari’s track records as incorruptible in every office he held before now, including former military Head of state, former minister of petroleum, former military administrator and Head of Petroleum Trust Fund (PTF), his attainments today are an icing on a cake built many years back as no living Nigerian leaders can stand on the podium of morality and declared his incorruptible nature except Muhammadu Buhari.

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As his administration gradually grinds to a close, history would no doubt be fair to him for all the good he has done to humanity.

Though his administration might have faltered in areas like Naira redesign which hurt many, especially the poor , some of his appointments and the skirmish of security challenges which the government is addressing. Revisionists pays passive attention to the giant strives of his administration but wants us to focus only on those areas that the administration didn’t fair better and they magnified and mock him over the reproach of ill health as if Buhari like every other human beings is beyond reproach. The good thing is that his place in history is already guaranteed. It was Gani Fawehinmi who said that ‘We should stand up for what is right even if it means standing alone because at the end we will be vindicated ‘

I have always taken it as the rule that the president must utilise all the knowledge of politics and policy at his disposal to aid in his decisions, so that he may continue to maintain the high and esteemed reputation his office demands and his prestige with the moral public. Muhammadu Buhari has surpassed the trademark of honesty and decency in office and has stood up for what is right, noble, and of good report and he is rest assured that Nigerians are proud of his achievements.

As the tall man from Daura, takes the last flight back home after a glittering record of service to humanity, l will remain fervent in my prayer for the God of Strength to strengthen him, bless him and his family and grant him good health in retirement.

Umohinyang, social commentator and political analyst wrote from Abuja.