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Yar’Adua needs to work harder, say Ohaneze, Ladoja, others

Posted by By AKEEB ALARAPE (Ibadan), PETRUS OBI (Enugu), TUNDE RAHEEM (Akure), DESMOND MGBOH (Kano) & FEMI FOLARANMI (Yenagoa) on 2007/10/01 | Views: 775 |

Yar’Adua needs to work harder, say Ohaneze, Ladoja, others


Five months into his presidency, Alhaji Umaru Musa Yar’Adua would in the next twenty-four hours lead the country through its 47th Independence Anniversary.

Five months into his presidency, Alhaji Umaru Musa Yar’Adua would in the next twenty-four hours lead the country through its 47th Independence Anniversary.

But beyond the celebration banters, some Nigerians have taken a critical look at his first few steps in Aso Rock. Indeed, while some did not hesitate to score him favourably, quite a few reserved their comments, preferring to watch as the days progress.

Nonetheless, there are those that deemed it fit to instantly task his administration. All in all, they came up with what could pass for an agenda for Mr. President.

Sen Rashidi Ladoja
(Former Gov of Oyo State)
If the President spends more money in building the structure, Nigeria will be better. For example, the issue of electricity supply should be tackled head- on.
The Millennium Development Goal (MDG) will be meaningless if Nigeria continues to be a consumer nation, rather than being a producer nation.

For the country to be a producer, electricity is at the core of it. Whether you are a barber, a welder, a tailor or industrialist, you need electricity to be able to perform optimally.
After electricity, he should ensure availability of potable water in all parts of the country. After that, good road network to facilitate movement of goods and services. He should not waste his time on theories. He should be practical and face development itself. But development cannot come without developing infrastructure.

The tariff for mobile phone in the country is too high but they too are complaining that they use diesel for their equipment. If there is steady electricity, this will not be so. Let him generate steady electricity within the next few months. Nigeria can generate electricity from coal, gas and the hydropower stations.
For now, he should ignore the circumstance that brought him to office until the case at the tribunal is over. If the tribunal asks him to go, he would have done a bit for the country.

Sen Lekan Balogun:
I think he has started very well. He has distinguished himself as a major promoter and champion of democracy and rule of law. We have seen him reversing some issues that were illegally done; like the sales of the unity schools, withheld Lagos State council funds and the sales of the country’s refineries.
I am aware that he is working on a new development plan. Energy supply should be tackled in all its ramifications so that people can generate employment and curb all these crimes and social vices facing the nation and our youths.
With the efforts he has made so far, I don’t have any doubt that he can take us to the Promised Land. He should just be focused and unrelenting in social justices.

Dr Dejo Raimi (Pro-Chancellor, FUTA)
He has started well. He is taking his time. But he should please not allow some of his ministers, especially the Attorney-General to push him to take some actions that will be reversed later in the future.
He should address the level of insecurity in the country by employing more policemen and re-orientate those already in the service. There is need for complete attitudinal change and re-orientation so that every Nigerian will be his brother’s keeper.

Luckily for him, there is no debt servicing to do. So, the money at his disposal should be judiciously used to provide adequate infrastructure for the country. Not just voting money for this infrastructure, he should inaugurate honest and incorruptible Nigerians to supervise them.
The Niger Delta crisis should also be handled with care so that it will not disintegrate the country. The frequent kidnapping and hostage-taking in the region is not just a protest, it is political as powerful and influential people are behind it.

Chief Olu Falae (former presidential candidate)
At 47, Nigeria has a lot to show grapple with, the insecurity of lives and properties, unemployment among the youths, which have turned young ones to prostitutes and armed robbers, unstable economy which is telling seriously on down trodden masses and the massive rigging that is pervading our electoral system and other vices of our leaders. All these are enough to ruin the nation.

There will not be meaningful development unless our leaders are ready to change their attitudes and their approach to governance. How do want a leader who is engaging in massive rigging all in the name of perpetrating himself in power or trying to install his stooges in power so that they will be covering his misdeeds? Tell me, how do you think the nation will develop when a whole deputy governor was snatching ballot boxes in the presence of voters? I mean this nation needs a lot of reforms and sanity; otherwise the nation may not witness any meaningful development.

Bishop Emmanuel Bolanle Gbonigi
Our nation needs serious prayers and God’s intervention. Our leaders, instead of listening to the cry of the masses and engage in developmental projects that will alleviate the sufferings of already downtrodden masses, they were busy looting the nation’s treasury. Therefore, we need to intensify in our prayers so that God can touch the hearts of our leaders. You can see that at 47, the nation has little to show for it. Our leaders should have the fear of God in their minds.

Alhaji Ibrahim Hadejia (Former-dep gov of Jigawa State)
His unbundling of the NNPC, which is the life wire of the nation’s economy, is rather strategic. Besides, you must know that for eight years, the issue of due process and transparency had affected every other sector in Nigeria, apart from the oil sector. By taking up this challenge, which is the single most important factor of the economy, I think he should be credited. And if he succeeds in the end, then his name would be written in gold.

Alhaji Sagir Mohammed (Retired military officer)
President Yar’Adua took over from Obasanjo at a time that the country was almost at a crossroad; everything was grinding to a halt. The country was polarized. The art of governance was being bastardized and worse of all, the officials of the government were plundering the resources of the state with unrestrained ease.
However, as soon as Yar’Adua came to power, he declared his seven points agenda, which is intended to address these imbalances of the past, and put the country on the part of progress and economic growth. As you can see today, the crises in the petroleum sector have stabilized, the striking university lecturers have since returned to school, the bad economic policies of the past regime have been put at bay.

In addition, Yar’Adua believes in the rule of law, as you would not easily forget that that he indeed directed the Inspector General of Police and the Attorney General of the Federation to immediately respect the Supreme Court judgment on the Obis case in Anambra State.

Alhaji Huruna Danzago (Buhari, Shekarau follower in Kano)
What has President Umaru Musa Yar’Adua achieved since coming into office that is really worthy of mention? Nothing! Nothing, as far as I am concerned. There is no light in this country, despite all the promises. Or, I should ask you, where is the electricity? Up till now, the cost of petrol is far above the reach of most Nigerians.

In fact, you cannot get it at the cost of 70 per liter; you cannot get it for anything less than N72 per liter. From my own understanding, for every 10 liters, the owners of the filling station take one liter off you. Up till now, the masses of this country are still suffering and the rate of hunger is better imagined than told. Nothing is going down; all the prices of goods and services in Nigeria today are rather going up, increasing every day in the market. No light, no water, no roads and the security situation in Nigeria are getting worst. There is nothing to write home about this government in its so-called 100 days.

Senator Felix Oboro (Ambassadorial nominee)
Former Secretary to Bayelsa State government and now Ambassador-designate, Senator Felix Oboro has urged Nigerians to be patient with the administration of President Umar Musa Yar’Adua as the government has shown that it up to the task of carving a direction for the country.
“President Yar’Adua is doing well. The way he is going Nigerians should be patient with him because he going to give us a sense of direction. When the head is straight you should expect that everything would fall into place.
From his pronouncement on the Niger Delta you would see he has the right attitude to the development of the region. And I hope those saddled with the responsibilities would discharge their duties in accordance with the vision of the President. With time all the tension in the Niger Delta would be a thing of the past.”

Comrade Joseph Eva (Ijaw Monitoring Group)
It is too early to assess President Yar’Adua but he has made moves that show he means business. However, his decisions are being delay especially with the development of Niger Delta, and delay is dangerous. We want to see Fish trawlers in the Niger Delta, which would give our youths jobs to stem the tide of violent agitations. But so far, he has demonstrated that he can handle Nigeria.”

Dr Akpabio Udo Ukpa (Traditional ruler)
For the Oku Ibono Ibibio and life patron of the Association of Traditional Rulers of Oil Minerals Producing Communities (TROMPCON), Yar’Adua has made a good start, especially with the Niger Delta.
“He has made a good start. He has brought a lot of good things to the Niger Delta. I am 85 years old and I have seen governments right from the days of Herbert Macaulay and Nnamdi Azikiwe. With the trend I am seeing, Yar’Adua has made a good start. I am hopeful that he would put Nigeria on the path of development.”

Dr. Dozie Ikedife (Ohaneze Ndigbo)
As President-General of Ohaneze Ndigbo, Dr Dozie Ikedife thinks it is too soon to talk about the present administration. “We are watching with interest, we are keeping records, things are beginning to happen. There is certainly a great difference between the 120 days of Yar’Adua than the last 120 days of Obasanjo; the difference is clear.

“There are certain things that were done in the last days of Obasanjo that have been reversed in the first few months with Yar’Adua as president; that is an indication that things are not necessarily going to be as they were, nor is somebody going to be some other person’s puppet. The indications are there. For example; the Benin-Ore-Lagos Road was declared impassable and the Federal Government of Obasanjo said there was no money to do the road. But when the new Minister for Transport came, she said money must be found to make that area passable. There are many other things. Look at the way NEPA is performing. But like I said, it is too early to talk; we are waiting and watching and keeping records.

Mr. Nana Ogbodo (AC stalwart)
Mr. Nana Ogbodo, Enugu East senatorial candidate of Action Congress in the last election, and former Special Adviser to governor Chimaroke Nnamani, says: “I must admit that there is a kind of peace released to the polity; the polity is so calm, devoid of tension, people feel more relaxed; there is less recklessness, vindictiveness, high handedness and intimidation like in the immediate past administration. There seem to be peace in the polity.
There seems to be a sort of relief in the power sector, with many homes sleeping more comfortably at night, as power supply has tended to improve.
Yar’Adua appears to be a positively different person from his predecessor.

Dr. Walter Oji (Former guber candidate in Enugu)
Dr. Walter Oji, a former gubernatorial aspirant in Enugu State recalled that Yar’Adua never nursed the ambition to become president of Nigeria. “He served faithfully as governor of Katsina for eight years. He did his work diligently and was ready to retire to the academic institution where he came from, when he was called upon to be president, that is the hand of God and you can see that he has focus. Nigerians should just wait and see, what God will use the president to do for this country.

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