“We had to remove Fowler to improve revenue generation – Presidency.”
VANGUARD, December 24, 2019, p 9.
By Dele Sobowale
Fowler for those who might not know is from Lagos State and he was replaced by an Abubakar, not from Lagos State. From the statement credited to Garba Shehu, who was just a loudspeaker and not one of the “we” who removed Fowler, one would assume that Fowler was given definite revenue generation targets for each year in office which he failed to achieve.
Furthermore, one would also suppose that all the officers charged with collecting income for the Federal Government – NNPC, Customs, Nigeria Ports Authority, National Communications Commission, AMCON, etc – were also given revenue targets which they all achieved except Fowler. That would have justified their being retained as officers of the Federal Government. But, that is clearly not the case as the following reports will show.
Fowler was a victim of discrimination based one ethnic, state and religious grounds. Shehu Garba being a member of the privileged class in Nigeria at the moment cannot be expected to notice injustice meted out to others not in the cabal which this government was the first one to publicly claim and embrace.
“Power tends to corrupt And absolute power corrupts absolutely Great men are always bad men.” Lord Acton, 1834-1902.
VANGUARD BOOK OF QUOTATIONS, VBQ, p 195.
Incidentally, the word “cabal” which the FG now adopts as a badge of honour was used pejoratively against Jonathan when the APC and CPC were out of office. Now they are unable to escape the obvious signs of the “Animal World”which had been created since 2015, in which some Nigerians are equal but some very few are more equal than others. The original promise made by the President to be for all Nigerians had been exposed as a fraud. Hypocrisy has no better definition than what we now experience. Nothing exposes the swindle better than the retrenchments and replacements which had taken place since the election of 2019. The Southern political leaders who got us into this “One chance”contraption called government of the Federation better start thinking of how to get us out of it before the federal civil service becomes one of only Abubakars and Mohammeds.
“Nigeria earns N5trn from oil in 11 months
·As FG records N1.7trn deficit”
VANGUARD, December 24, 2019, p 19.
Liars must always have good memories. But,FG’s dissemblers don’t even bother to think before talking. Absolute power confers the privilege to assume that listeners are stupid. So anything said will do. In the same paper in which Shehu Garba was quoted above, we come across a story which reveals that other FG Ministries, Departments andAgencies, MDAs, have also failed to deliver the revenue targets expected of them without getting sacked. The worst culprit was the Ministry of Petroleum Resources – which had been privatised to the North. The President is the Minister, the Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, is from the North and all the major subsidiaries of the organisation are headed by Northerners. What was the result reported for this year so far?
According to the VANGUARD report, “Nigeria earned N5 trillion from oil in 11 months ending in November 2019, representing1.2 per cent decline year-on-year, YoY, from N5.1 trillion earned over the same period of 2018.
However, total federally collected revenue rose by nine per cent, YoY, to N9.4 trillion during the 11 months…”.
A good percentage of the non-oil revenue increase was generated by the Federal Income Revenue Service, FIRS, headed by Fowler, while the negative variance came from the Ministry of Petroleum, Customs, Nigeria Ports Authority and all the other agencies of government headed by the President and “our brothers and sister” from the North who have not been sacked. If that has not convinced you why you must add Abubakar or Mohammed to your name if you seek appointment under Buhari or want to remain in office, then read this.
“Buhari sacks postmaster general, appoints new NCC chairman.”—PUNCH, December 24, 2019, p 30.
The postmaster general, Mr Bisi Adegbuyi,received his heartless “Christmas present” unexpectedly on Monday December 23,2019. The man “had no inkling that he was going to be removed.” For God’s sake could they not have waited to allow the man to enjoy whatever is left of a dreadful Yuletide? Out of about fifteen individuals who were involved in sackings and replacements, six were either Abubakars or Mohammeds or both.
Prior to that Dr Muiz Banire, from Lagos State,had been removed and replaced by an Abubakar as Chairman of the Assets Management Corporation of Nigeria, AMCON. One of Abubakar’s measures was the seizure of properties belonging to MrDemola Seriki, former Minister of State, Defence, also of Lagos.
Of all the names in Nigeria,Buhari appears to be fixated on just two names – Abubakar and Mohammed. That places women and people from the three Southern zones at a completed is advantage. Close to fifteen organisations were involved in appointments in that PUNCH story. Yet, there were no women; only one appointee from the SouthEast and none from the SS zone. Increasingly, Buhari is making it abundantly clear to Southerners that his is a “government of the North, by the North and for the North” – the South can go to hell.
Already, all the Security Chiefs, Army, Police (Abubakar), DSS, NIA (another Abubakar) are Northerners. I recollect asking one of the leaders of the Action Congress, whose leader got the South West into this slavery, in 2014, if they were aware of Buhari’s antecedents with regard to nepotism, ethnic bigotry, anti-women attitudes, proclivity for dictatorship and religious intolerance. He answered confidently that they had thought of all of those things and they “have a plan to checkmate those tendencies”. Today, everyone, including Shi’ite Muslims, can see clearly that religious intolerance is now federal government policy; our rights are being gradually eroded and even the conspirators who formed the All Progressives Congress, APC, are not spared the lashes.
People who would have been the first to raise their voices when they were in opposition when certain things were done now keep mute as courts are invaded by security forces. One of Buhari’s house slaves, a former strong voice in defence of human rights, sent an article to several papers announcing “We are with you all the way”. That sort of slave mentality is now becoming widespread among those admitted to the inner caucus of the Buhari cabal.
The South had been sold out just like the traditional rulers in West Africa sold their people into slavery for gin and mirrors two hundred years ago. Now, they sell us for appointments – which nevertheless are not secure as the cases of Fowler and Banire have clearly demonstrated. If failure to deliver adequate revenue is indeed a criterion for getting the sack, then the Minister of Petroleum and the Group Managing Director of NNPC should be the first to go. They should be followed out the door by the Comptroller General of Customs Service and the Managing Director of NPA.
An even more credible appraisal should have included determining who threw away the most money. In that case, there would have been no contest regarding who should be sacked. We read last week that the four scraps we call refineries lost N111 billion in nine months. The top officials, mostly our brothers, are set to throw N150 billion of our generated revenue down the corrupt drain pipes once again – namely their own pockets. Fowler rakes in trillions, Abubakars throw N150 billion down the sh*t hole. Then Fowler gets the axe and the Mohammeds stay behind to throw N170 billion down the same hole in 2020. And, Buhari and the Southern leaders of the APC continue to pretend that all is well.
One Southern leader living in his own dream land announced that Buhari had done great things that no leader had done before. It is easy to understand when they are becoming senile at an early age. He did not mention one specific thing Buhari did to receive that accolade. He reminded me of one Wada Nas (remember him?) of the Abacha era. Wada Nas (who I renamed Wada Nasty) was fund of releasing such nonsense about Abacha. No trace of the great things Abacha was supposed to have done when he passed on. Nas stopped praise-singing when the man packed up. The South has been sold out by its leaders. We need new leaders or for ever live as slaves. We have to regain our self-respect – AT ANY PRICE.
ARE YOU BETTER OFF TODAY THAN IN 2015?
Irrespective of what politicians say about their performance, every adult individual feels deep in his bones whether life has been better for him. The raw statistics indicate that on the average we are poorer today than on May 29, 2015.
There are indications that 2019 will end with a lower per capita income than what we started with in January. The 2020 Budget projects Gross Domestic Product, GDP, growth less than the expected population increase. So, we are certain to be poorer this time next year than today.
For how long can we go on like this? Is this the CHANGE we want? Better still; is this the change we deserve? Is this the change we were promised?
SHINE YOUR EYES ON CORRUPTION
“The more you look, the less you see.” ProfessorPeller, the late Magician.
Christians and/or Southerners who are still deluded that the war against corruption is being fought on all fronts should reflect of the following. Only four ex-Governors have been prosecuted and sentenced – Festus Dariye, Reverend Jolly Nyame, Alamesiegha and Orji Uzor Kalu. Look again. They are all Christians and they come from three zones –North Central, South East and South-South. Our Muslim brothers from the core north who were charged at the same time have not been touched.
The contract which got us into $9.01bn trouble was the handiwork of a late minister/Special Adviser on Petroleum from the core North. Not a finger had been laid on his assets for forfeiture – unlike Diezani’s. His name has not even been mentioned while Abubakar (that name again?) Malami chases shadows on this grave matter for which he should be charged with gross dereliction of duty.
Have a pleasant New Year – if you can. Buhari cannot guarantee you anything better than what you have now. As the lawyers say “You can’t give what you do have.” President Buhari does not know how to manage a modern economy. The complexities are too much for him to grasp. Pity.
NOTE: The books are available at CSS Bookshops, VANGUARD Abuja Office and MM2as well as GATT Aviation airports in Lagos.