Former Deputy National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Chief Olabode George, has described the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari from 2015 to 2023 as a colossal failure.
Buhari will hand over to President-elect, Senator Bola Tinubu, on Monday in Abuja.
George, who spoke in Lagos at the weekend, said he would only give the Buhari-led administration five per cent, having failed to secure the country, improve the economy and fight corruption which were the three major planks of the change mantra.
The PDP chieftain said unfortunately, even the free and fair election that the administration promised through the use of BVAS, which the Prof Mahmoud Yakubu-led Independent National Electoral Commission, (INEC) also promised will be a game changer, failed when it mattered most.
He said: “My personal assessment is that they failed, not completely in every sector. If you sit for an exam and the requirements say you must have a minimum of 33% before you can go to the next class, if you do not attain that 33%, you are going nowhere.
“May be I will give them about five per cent, even the five per cent requires a lot of introspection, the economic sector, the education, agricultural and infrastructural sectors. In any administration, the most important thing you must guarantee to your people as a government is security of lives and property. Who is safe now? Whether you’re a poor man, middle aged, when you are walking towards any direction, you have to be looking, front, back, left and centre because of insecurity.
“So, it is very, very disheartening and heartbreaking that the number one job, which is to guarantee security of lives and property has failed.
“So for me, I’m in a quagmire, heavily disappointed, but the Almighty, in His words, says that, the journey of life cannot be in a straight line all the time, there are times we need the bump, sometimes the round about, sometimes we go into the tunnel, I believe we will learn and make mistakes and I now quote the words of General Powell, the former Chief of Defence Staff in the U.S.”
He said “the only mistake a human being can make is the one that you do not learn lessons from, but if you learn from it, it’s no longer a mistake.
“Those are heavy words. You know when he was coming in, Oga (Buhari) was telling us, I will fight corruption, I will secure lives and properties of the people, I will do this, I will do that, all kinds of promises.
“So, if we look at those promises now that he is leaving, it is clear he didn’t achieve much. Whatever a leader does during his time, it is on the pages of history.
“We are starting another journey on May 29. We must be full of prayers, because I worked with Oga (Buhari) before, I think, may be, age is not on his side. He came out around the middle of last year, publicly and internationally and stated that, look, I am going to leave one legacy, that the electoral process in this country will be second to none in the world, the mess we used to call election process would be a thing of the past, that they were going to buy a technology that will remove interlopers, manipulation and manipulating people, it will be straight from your polling unit into the control centre.
“Here in my office, we organised a party that that is the end of electoral madness and rigging in Nigeria, we were so happy, we even popped champagne. People asked me, ‘are you sure?’ I replied ‘it’s a General who is talking’.
“They budgetted, released the money, bought the equipment, headed to do the test run in Anambra, flawless! Did a test run in Ekiti, flawless! Did another one in Osun.
“Before the general elections of February
25 and March 18, Professor Yakubu made a broadcast and reassured Nigerians that they had done a test run, no problem.
“We were all sitting, hoping that for the first time, the will of the people would prevail, whatever you vote will be the answer, and then on that D-day, Professor Yakubu told us there was a glitch, on the D-day. It was disgraceful, shambolic, it wrenched my heart.
“All hopes were on the fact that yes! There was going to be justice, fairness and equity and respect for the will of the people. Shamelessly they said there was a glitch.
“They now went back to the way we used to do it. So, what happened to all the money, all the many talks?
“We have almost hit the bottom in this nation. Take any sector, there was a time children in the university were home for almost nine months, no school, no nothing, the teachers were asking for their salaries.
“Look at our economy now. The interest rate, few days ago, was increased to 18.2% by the CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele.
“Who will go and borrow now? Unless you’re a thief or you know you’re going to default, because you will pass on that extra to the people. In the main time, the consumers, what’s their take home? So, what are we breeding? Who is driving who?
“Inflation rate has also soared to more than 22%. What the hell is going on? I’m not a pessimist, but facts are facts.
“Where are we in the comity of nations? This is the giant of Africa, for every 10 Africans, seven are Nigerians, and look at every high level of professionalism anywhere in the world, you will find a Nigerian there who is an expert. So, what is wrong with our system in this country?
“God didn’t create us like this, all these ‘Wahala’ I’m talking about are man-made, self inflicted, let’s put those who can put a smile on our faces to run this country, it’s like a ship that is taking water in and you’re not stopping it. It will sink.”
Credit: THE CONCLAVE.