By Sam Eyoboka
WHILE there are divergent opinions about the ongoing Revolution Now against the Nigerian government, the Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC), yesterday declared a vote of confidence for President Muhammadu Buhari and his administration, arguing that the proponents of #Revolutionnow have lost touch with reality.
The group asked #Revolutionnow camp: ‘What is the basis of your revolution against PMB? Where are Buhari’s billions? Where are his hilltop palaces? Can you compare PMB to other ex-presidents and heads of state in terms of wealth?
The group’s position was made known in a statement issued by its director/founder, Professor Ishaq Akintola, saying: “While it is on record that we have called for the release or arraignment of Omoyele Sowore, we affirm that the #Revolutionnow camp has lost touch with reality.
How do you judge an administration which is yet to take off in its second term? What are the criteria the #Revolutionnow group has used to arrive at its hardline position?”
According to MURIC, “this is an administration that was ambushed, strangulated and ‘sarakitised’ from the first day of its inauguration in May 2015.
Are they blind to history? Today was born from the wombs of yesterday. Why can’t they take a glance at where this administration is coming from? Have they forgotten how the 8th National Assembly (NASS) held the Buhari administration by the jugular for four good years?
“So what has changed since then? How much time has Buhari spent in his second term? He has not even taken off. Wednesday 21st August has just been fixed for the swearing-in of ministers. Why won’t they allow this government to settle down? Who is afraid of Buhari? Whose cupboard is full of skeletons? Why are they in so much haste?
“Does it mean that both the leaders and supporters of #Revolutionnow were pleased with the sarakitisation of Buhari’s first term? Where really do they stand in the war against corruption? Where were they when the 8th Senate delayed budget for seven whole months?
“We put it to #Revolutionnow that it has misplaced its priorities and failed to identify the true enemies of Nigeria. #Revolutionnow should have organized its uprising against the 8th NASS. By the way, where were they during the general elections that brought Buhari to power?
How did they fare? Is it proper to change by force what the ballots refused to grant? It was Allah who joined Buhari and Nigerians together in the general elections. Let no #Revolutionnow seek to put asunder what Allah has joined together,” the group argued.
According to Prof. Akintola Nigerians are witnesses to the tremendous progress made by the Buhari administration despite a hostile NASS, stressing that all contractual debts have been paid up.
“Treasury leakages were plugged. Internal revenue generation drive has increased while the tax regime has been made more effective. All pension arrears have been paid up including money owed Biafran war veterans. Not only that. Recession was overcome within one year and foreign reserve keeps growing despite low oil price.
“All Federal roads are being reconstructed across the country while fast and modern rails are emerging. The Second Niger Bridge is a living testimony and 13 modular refineries are currently being built in the Niger Delta.
“Nigeria’s economy is being restructured from oil-based to agriculture, solid mineral and manufacturing. Electricity generating capacity has moved from a lowly 3,000 megawatts to 7,000 megawatts.
From a high profile renegade group which occupied 17 local governments under Jonathan, Boko Haram has been drastically humbled to a guerilla group that can only hit and run.
“You said Buhari has not achieved anything but who paid the arrears of former staffers of NITEL, NEPA, Nigerian Airways, Nigerian Railway, etc?
What is the basis of your revolution against PMB? Where are Buhari’s billions? Where are his hilltop palaces? Can you compare PMB to other ex-presidents and heads of state in terms of wealth?
“You are rising against a man who refuses to steal. It just doesn’t add up. Ungrateful people, rebellious subjects, enemies of peace. Why are you behaving like the nine lepers who could not appreciate Jesus’ healing? ‘Were ten not healed? Where are the nine?’ (Luke 17:17).
“If it is the issue of killings and kidnappings, is it a new phenomenon? Was Buhari in charge when Odi massacre occurred? What of Zaki Biam? Who killed the 47 Biafrans whose corpses were dumped in Ozu River in 2013? Are we so naïve that we fail to realize that all the Oyenusis and the Evans now disguise as herdsmen and Fulanis just to cause confusion? Anarchists are trying to deceive us.
#Revolutionnow is a fall guy, a guinea pig. Scientists will call him a ‘lab rat’.
“#Revolutionnow group must be the greatest jokers of the century if they cannot see the above achievements. We, therefore, urge Nigerians to ignore them. They simply want to gain by the bends what they failed to get by the straight. But must it be by hook or crook?
“We submit that #Revolutionnow is fighting a proxy war for looters. It has allowed itself to become a willing tool in the hands of corrupt politicians and bad losers. It is corruption fighting back. We feel the hands of Esau but we hear the voice of Jacob in #Revolutionnow.
We, therefore, advise those behind it to retrace their steps. We warn distinguished Nigerians who have earned the respect of millions of their compatriots not to dance to the gallery. It is not mandatory to speak in support of every rascality. Real wise men are selective in times like this. It is unnecessary to find your finger in every pie.
“By the way, what alternative do the champions of #Revolutionnow have for Nigerians as they seek violent regime change? Whether they call their #Revolutionnow violent or nonviolent, is it time yet for another election? Have they forgotten Libya? Can’t they see what is happening in Syria and Iraq? Real activists respect democratic ideals but the reverse is the case with our friends. The open call for a revolution is a flagrant abuse of democratic principles. Who did this to #Revolutionnow?
“Sowore is a good material for future politicking but he has to redirect his energy towards reengineering Nigerian youth for service, patriotism and dignity, not towards removing a democratically elected government. A Fidel Castro, Thomas Sankara or Che Guevera profile is anachronistic, retarding and un-Nigerian. Even Nelson Mandela emerged through democratic process.
“As we conclude this advocacy, we appeal to distinguished and elderly activists to tell Sowore the truth. We advise #Revolutionnow to dismantle, dissolve into a political party and wait for 2023. Even a coup will not pay the group. Coups are no longer fashionable. The Buhari regime is not a product of violent change. It evolved via due democratic process.
Any other process is therefore unlawful, illegal, illegitimate and unconstitutional. In view of Buhari’s sterling qualities and his numerous fait accompli in spite of all odds, we affirm clearly, unambiguously and categorically that Mr. President has our vote of confidence,” Akintola further stated.