WITH less than a year into his first four-year term in office, President Muhammadu Buhari is already being wooed and prodded to contest for a second term in 2019. Those championing this are some members of the national caucus of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) and other interest groups within the party.
They were recently joined by the Taraba State chapter of the APC whose chairman, Hassan Ardo, was quoted as saying: “APC members (have) declared their total and unconditional support for all the policies and programmes of the Federal Government and endorsed President Muhammadu Buhari for a second tenure if he is interested in contesting in 2019.”
Asking an incumbent president or governor to declare for a second term has become a tradition among Nigerian politicians. While it is the constitutional right of these individuals to air their political views, we are shocked that the new ruling party, the APC, is toeing the line which the former party in power, the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) defined during its sixteen years in power. Doing the same thing that the old order is still being discredited for does not reflect “change”.
Besides, President Buhari is yet to build a single kilometre of road or add an extra megawatt of electricity to the national grid or activate any of his numerous promises during the campaigns, apart from the war on corruption. The financial package that would enable him to start work – the Federal Appropriation Bill 2016 – is yet to be passed, as it is mired in convoluted confusion and controversies.
It was only in recent days that the concrete outlines of the administration’s economic direction started to emerge. Professional politicians within the ruling party should allow the President to justify the mandate given to him almost a year ago by proving his mettle and demonstrating his ability to give Nigeria the “change” he promised.
Prompting the president to ignore the huge amount of suffering that Nigerians are going through amidst severe scarcity of fuel, lack of electricity, massive job losses, growing poverty and the unfinished business of war on corruption shows how shallow and selfish our politicians have become.
They are only interested in positioning themselves for power, rather than tackling the challenges of good governance and the advancement of our society.
The truth is that President Buhari and the APC must prove their worth, . Buhari and his party’s ticket for a second term in office will only come from a resounding endorsement of the people, and this will be based on performance and approval of the electorate.
Politicians should leave President Buhari alone to face his work!