By Femi Fani-Kayode
“Their HATE for President Goodluck Jonathan justifies the suffering in the land. Recession matters not. Hunger matters not. Loss of jobs matters not. Polio matters not. Making a mess of the naira matters not. Fulani Herdsmen matter not. High cost of foodstuffs matters not. Chibok matters not. We have men consumed by their hate for Jonathan and it matters not if Nigeria burns” – PRINCE HENRY NWAZURUAHU SHIELD, FACEBOOK, AUGUST 11th 2016.
Fani- Kayode and General Muhammadu Buhari How right Prince Shield is. His contribution is not only courageous but also insightful and profound. The Buharists and the “lying liars” are blinded by their hate for Jonathan and for those of us that have chosen to stand by him. It is so bad that if their wives were made pregnant by another man they would say that it was Jonathan that was responsible. Yet their record of governance is clear and there for all to see. In one year and two months of President Buhari and his APC’s “Mai Chanji”, Nigeria has become a very different place to what it was before. Our nation has, so to speak, really been ”transformed”.
A few examples will suffice. One year two months ago we were the largest producer of oil in Africa but thanks to “Mai Chanji” that is no longer the case. One year and two months ago we were the number one destination for foreign investment in Africa but thanks to “Mai Chanji” that is no longer the case. One year and two months ago we were the largest economy in Africa but thanks to “Mai Chanji” that is no longer the case.
Sadly it gets worse. In the space of one year and two months the naira has depreciated from N160 Naira to $1 United States Dollar (USD) to N410 to $1 USD. If there is no change in fiscal amd monetary policy anytime soon there is a consensus amongst economic and fiscal experts that by Christmas the Naira would have depreciated to, at best, N500 Naira to $1 USD. One year and two months ago Nigerians could buy a bag of rice for N8000 naira but today they are paying N20,000 naira for that same bag of rice.
As Pastor Reno Omokri, a former aide to President Jonathan said, if the minimum wage is N18,000 naira where are the people meant to get the money to buy rice and other basic food commodities for their families? In one year and two months graduate and non-graduate unemployment has soared, banks and companies are retrenching, manufacturers are closing their factories and plants, industries are collapsing, farmers are complaining and businessmen and traders are crying. That is “Mai Chanji” for you. Yet it gets worse. One year and two months ago we were generating 5000 megawatts of power for the electrical grid but today we are generating less than 2000 megawatts.
Again one year and two months ago we were making large sums of money from the export of our crude oil but today oil production has been reduced by one third and we are importing crude oil and refined products from the neighbouring nations of Niger and the Republic of Chad. One year and two months ago the Nigerian Stock Exchange was recovering and on the rise and our banking sector was flourishing and liquid.
Today the Stock Exchange has lost 1.6 trillion naira in the last 14 months and our banks have become nothing but weak and barren money-lender stalls and pawn shops. That is “Mai Chanji” for you. In one year and two months our Air Force, once the pride of Afrcan skies, has been reduced to nothing but a cow and sheep recovery agency. In one year and two months our army, once one of the most professional, feared, disciplined and respected in Africa, has been turned into a civilian-killing machine which, on several occasions, has been unleashed on the very people that they are paid to be protecting. Again it doesn’t stop there. In one year and two months Boko Haram has redefined itself. They have also established two equally ruthless factions. Gosh, don’t you just love “Mai Chanji”?
In one year and two months Fulani militias, who pose as herdsmen, are raping and killing innocent and defenceless Nigerians in the farms and towns of the Middle Belt and the south. In one year and two months the majority of Nigerians have been cowered into silence out of fear of persecution and om trepidation of being locked up indefinately by Buhari’s gestapo.
That is “Mai Chanji” for you. In one year and two months we have been turned from a democracy where the freedom of speech once reigned and where the criticism of the President and the government was welcome and even encouraged, into a totalitarian police state where the press is muzzled, judges are muscled and legislators are threatened and docked. One year and two months ago judges were reverred, court orders were honored and respected in the land and the rule of law prevailed.
Today court orders are violated and treated with contempt and impunity, the rule of law has been reduced to an inconsequential and empty mantra and members of the Judiciary are threatened with criminal investigation, media trials and public witchunts, infantile probes and baseless criminal prosecutions if they do not play ball and do the bidding of the security agencies and the executive. That is real “Mai Chanji” for you.
One year and two months ago Nigeria had a cerebal, world-class and outstanding Minister of Finance and a flourishing economy but today we have a Minister of Finance who is not only struggling but who is also clearly out of her depth and our economy is “officially in recession”. One year and two months ago President Goodluck Jonathan, his government and indeed the people of Nigeria were desperately looking for the Chibok girls and the Obi Ezekwesile and Hadiza Usman-led ‘Bring Back Our Girls’ campaign was in full swing, marching, demonstrating and criticising the government every day for not finding them.
Today the Chibok girls have more or less been abandoned and forgotten, President Muhammadu Buhari appears to be indifferent to their plight, the search for them has ground to a halt and the ‘Bring Back Our Girls’ campaign has gone into a deep coma whilst some of its leaders have been pacified and settled with juicy political appointments. That is “Mai Chanji” for you. Up until one year and two months ago a great and illustrious son of Nigeria and a man who was a great source of pride to African football by the name of Stephen Keshi was honored and celebrated by his President and government on behalf of the people of Nigeria.
Yet one year and two months later when he passed on and when his family needed all the comfort and support that they could get, our “Mai Chanji” government did not give him a state burial, did not participate in his funeral and did not see fit to honor him in death. That is how encouraging and supportive “Mai Chanji” is. Four years ago our sports men and women went to the London Olympics with their heads held up high and with all the kit and resources that they needed but today our sports men and women at the Rio Olympics have been begging foreigners and Nigerians alike on the internet for transportion, food, clothes and their allowances.
That is ” Mai Chanji” for you. When one considers all these one wonders just how low we can go and just how bad things can get? Is this not evidence of some kind of curse? Is it not God’s judgement? Is this not a change (or “chanji”) from light to darkness? Is this not what we warned Nigerians about before and during the election? Did we not tell them that the APC broom was nothing but a symbol of witchcraft and that their fanatical supporters had been put under a terrible sorcerer’s spell? Many of those that once supported the APC are now privately lamenting and publicly recanting in shame and bitter pain.
They are asking the nation to forgive them for their ignorance and short-sightedness. Some of them have even been locked up simply for having the courage to criticise the government and party that they once worked for and swore by. Yet the suffering has only just begun. Things will get far worse before they get any better. This is because the darkest part of the night always comes just before the morning. The truth is that this government is a plague. It has brought nothing but sickness, poverty and hardship. It is an affliction that thrives on the suffering of the people. It is the incubus and succubus spirits that feed on the nation’s glory and that suck the life out of the people.
Its motivation is pure and unadulterated hate and its objective is to impoverish Nigeria, to silence the opposition, to intimidate and enslave the people, to satisfy its insatiable lust for power and to impose a hideous and ungodly ethnic and religious agenda. Wickedness is its forte, the abuse of power is its modus, brute force is its language and lies, deceit and propaganda are the weapons of warfare. It is made up of nothing but bullies and fascists and like all bullies and fascists their time will soon come to an end. Permit me to conclude this contribution with a profound question. Does anyone remember the the following submissions and have they not proved to be prophetic?
The first came from the embattled IPOB leader Mr. Nnamdi Kanu who has been in illegal detention for the better part of the last one year. He said the following on Radio Biafra on the 6th of February 2014: “They campaign vigorously for elections, you would think, they are coming to grow the economy, enthrone justice, breed unity and tolerance, love for one another. No, they are coming to enthrone Hausa Fulani supremacy. These are interesting words which have proved to be true. With what is happening in Nigeria today it is clear that Mr. Kanu has not only been proved right but he has also been vindicated.
The second came from none other than President Goodluck Jonathan himself. In Abuja on Saturday, 10th December 2014 he said the following: “The choice before Nigerians in the coming elections is simple: A choice between going forward or going backwards, between the old ways and the new ways; between freedom and repression; between a record of visible achievements and beneficial reforms and desperate power-seekers with empty promises”. Can anyone dispute the fact that both President Jonathan and Mr. Kanu are amongst the prophets? Welcome to Mai Chanji!
Femi Fani-Kayode is an erstwhile Minister of Aviation.