Shall We Tell The President?

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If I may quickly say this, I was not really a fan of Gen. Muhammadu Buhari until I read his interview in TheNEWS magazine sometime in 1994 — nine years after he was overthrown in a coup by General Ibrahim Babangida. Questioned on the things he got wrong as military head of state, Buhari replied candidly (and I paraphrase): “We made mistakes, but they were genuine mistakes… we were in a hurry to change Nigeria.” That instantly won me over. His perceived highhandedness was not for personal profit; it was in desperation to reform Nigerians. In one sentence, I saw honesty, I saw patriotism and I saw authenticity. I became his disciple from a distance.

I started dreaming of a Buhari presidency precisely in 1998. I can’t remember everything now, but I was then the Features Editor of THISDAY. Mr. Victor Ifijeh, then the Editor, drew my attention to a public lecture on leadership by Buhari and asked me to write a “Man in the News” feature on him for the Friday Review section. After going through Buhari’s speech, whose details I cannot now recollect (which means I’m finally getting old), I convinced myself that this was the kind of leader Nigeria badly needed. I started praying that one day, Buhari would lead Nigeria again. The inimitable Gen. Sani Abacha was the head of state then.

I would later get close to Buhari. I sized him up at close quarters and made my conclusions. One, he is very passionate about the progress of Nigeria. He believes that the country can be far better than this. Two, he believes the major problem obstructing our progress is leadership deficiency. In an interview I had with him in March 2001, he complained about the growing lawlessness in the land under President Olusegun Obasanjo’s leadership, concluding: “Instead of the dog wagging the tail, it is the tail that is wagging the dog.” Three, he told me in May 2009 that Nigeria had been ruled by “leaders without conscience”, and that was why we had not developed “despite all our resources”.

I saw in Buhari a leader who would not spend his days in office feathering his nest. I saw a leader who would not condone stealing of public funds. I saw in him a strong personality who would take a decision and stand by it, not being tossed by every wind of doctrine. However, unlike most of the modern-day Buhari fans, I was very much aware of his limitations. I knew he would be highly constrained by his worldview. I worried about his economic philosophy. I also worried about his likely choice of core team members. Above all, I knew his handling of the Nigerian situation as a military man was not replicable in a democracy. I was quite realistic.

In truth, I was not expecting magic in the event of him becoming president. I did not expect him to change Nigeria and Nigerians in four years, much less in 10 months. It so happened that in 2015, after three failed attempts, Buhari became the choice presidential candidate. The anti-Jonathan movement found a ready symbol of change in Buhari. They quickly created him in the image they wanted: a flawless magician, the ultimate messiah. I was very worried for Buhari at some point. For instance, on January 25, 2015 — more than two months before he won the election — I did foresee trouble in an article with the title: “Buhari and the Burden of Expectations.”

I wrote: “To be honest, I don’t know whether to rejoice or sympathise with Gen. Muhammadu Buhari anytime I read all the sweet comments about him on social media — especially on Twitter. I don’t know any presidential candidate who has been so idolised in recent times — which is an excellent accolade any politician will gladly take. On the one hand, it is good for him. He will not be complaining at all. No politician will complain about such good fortune, especially with only a few weeks to an election. On the other hand, my God! The expectations are sky-high. Incredible. From what I am reading, Buhari is expected to perform nothing short of magic in Aso Rock…”

I am, therefore, not surprised by the increasing murmurings and grumblings against Buhari in less than 10 months. A country perpetually reliant on fuel imports, littered with bad roads and sick hospitals, living in darkness, churning out illiterates as graduates — let’s face it: the turn-around maintenance of Nigeria will take longer than 10 months. I’ve always told my friends no president can transform Nigeria in four years or even eight years. The most important thing, I keep emphasising, is to have patriotic and competent leadership taking us in the right direction. That way, we would know that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory ahead.

Having said that, however, I am really getting worried about Buhari’s second coming. Yes, he has confronted Boko Haram decisively. Although the jury is still out, at least the soldiers are no longer running away to Cameroon on “tactical manoeuvre” or complaining about embezzled allowances. For once, there is sustained seriousness in the war on terror. Yes, Buhari has laid down the marker in his anti-graft war, even if it is not all-encompassing. At least, there is some activity on that front. We could use a more comprehensive strategy that includes moral suasion as well as institutional and administrative reforms, in addition to enforcement. Something is happening all the same.

But I worry about Buhari’s speed and economic philosophy. I admit that he met enormous challenges on ground. Only a magician would have killed all the cockroaches, mosquitoes and rats within 10 months. The PDP brigade, still hurting from their humiliation in the general election, are trying to force the issue, trying to brand Buhari as a failure already — yet their party had 16 whole years to address power shortage, dependence on fuel imports, infrastructural decay, comatose healthcare and stunted education. They wasted a golden opportunity. They are certainly not in a good position to describe Buhari as a failure before his first anniversary in office.

Nevertheless, I am very disturbed that Buhari does not yet have an economic direction. Neither is there an anchor. There is no clarity. What we are getting are mixed messages, bits and pieces here and there. I am hearing sweet statements and poetic promises, a lot of rhymes and alliterations, from APC leaders and ministers. There is no proper articulation so that we can have an idea of where we are headed. There are so many dots that are not connecting. I have this impression everybody is just doing their own thing without any overarching strategy to connect these dots. I can’t see coherence. I can’t see a roadmap. I can’t see what to hold on to.

Agreed, Buhari is not an economist. But you don’t have to be an economist to lead a nation to prosperity. All you need is a damn good economic team worth its onions. The team must have an anchor. We are neck-deep in an economic crisis and this requires emergency reaction. Even though Buhari is a strong character who stands by what he believes in, there must also be some flexibility. Economic crises are better tackled with a combination of antidotes. It is good that Buhari is a patriot and an honest man. It is good that Buhari means well. But meaning well does not solve these problems. He must also do well. The economy is in limbo, let’s be honest about it.

Mr. President, it’s time to wake up and smell the coffee. We need to see your development blueprint. We want to understand your policies, programmes and strategies. We want to see the goals and the goalposts. Your party says one thing today, you say another tomorrow. That you met a mess on ground is the same reason the majority of voters chose you. If they wanted the mess to continue, they would have maintained the status quo. And while we cannot expect you to clear the mess in 10 months, we need a mental picture of where you are taking us. I have no doubt that you can turn out to be the best Nigerian president ever, but where is the beef?

QUOTE 
“There is no proper articulation so that we can have an idea of how they are linked and where we are headed. There are so many dots that are not connecting. I have this impression everybody is just doing their own thing without any overarching strategy to connect these dots”

BUHARI AND MTN
On Tuesday, when President Muhammadu Buhari accused MTN of “aiding” the killing of 10,000 Nigerians by Boko Haram, I shuddered a bit. The president shouldn’t be making such public statements, I told myself. MTN clearly erred by failing to register 5.1 million subscribers and many of us have condemned the telecoms giant, but such a weighty allegation coming from the president is unnecessary — in my opinion. It is good that there finally seems to be a headway in the resolution of the issue, and I hope a good lesson has been learnt by all concerned, from operators to regulators. Valuable.

NNPC CONFUSION
Kindly give me a call if you understand what Dr. Ibe Kachikwu, minister of state for petroleum resources, is up to. When he became NNPC GMD last year, he reduced the directorates to four, saying we needed a “trim” organisation. Now that he is minister, he has increased them to seven “fat” units. He calls them “independent” units, meaning they are… erm… independent. Yet he says this is not “unbundling”. Independent but not unbundled? Independent? And I understand NNPC is fast becoming family business. At this rate, Diezani Alison-Madueke, former petroleum minister, may end up as a saint in record time. Nigeria!

SEAT BELTS
One lesson to be learnt from Sunday’s tragic accident that claimed the lives of James Ocholi, minister of state for labour, his wife and son, is that using seat belts is advisable no matter where you sit. Generally, only those on the front seats use belts. There is also the issue of overspeeding. Without excessive speeding, many accidents would not be fatal. Vehicles are easier to control within reasonable speeding, although our lawmakers are fighting to prevent the introduction of speed limiters by FRSC. Ocholi was such a lovely and lively man. My heartfelt condolences to his young family. Heart-rending.

MILES APART
Nigeria’s fault lines are easily magnified, as we saw yet again in the Mile 12 market crisis in Lagos. We were told a pregnant Yoruba woman was knocked down by a “Hausa” (probably not Hausa but a northerner or even Chadian) motorcyclist. In a normal society, the first thing is to get emergency treatment for the victim, not to ask of the culprit’s ethnicity. (It could well have been a Yoruba or Ibibio motorcyclist!) You then take the offender to the police for the law to take its course. But it ended up as Hausa vs Yoruba. Such a primitive pattern. Senseless.

  • obinnna77

    You understand NNPC is fast becoming ‘family business’?

    • Jon West

      The gene for innuendo, treachery, envy and bad blood is embedded in the DNA of certain Nigerians from certain parts of the country. As long as they are not in charge of a federal institution, they have to run it aground in the media, in the hope that one of theirs will get to run it . It will then become a good and functioning business. The leopard will never change its spots.

  • John Paul

    Complaining is human nature

    After 400 years of slavery in Egypt, the Children of Isreal were delivered from bondage. They were then lead by Moses, out of Egypt, through the wilderness . At the first sign of adversity – food shortage – this same people that were dying in bondage, in Egypt, started complaining:

    “It would have been better if the Lord had just killed us in the land of Egypt. At least there we had plenty to eat. We had all the food we needed. But now you have brought us out here into this desert to make us all die from hunger.” – Exodus 16:3

    Similarly, after 16 years of bondage under PDP, now that Nigerians have been freed from their oppressors – PDP – who looted Nigeria like Mauruders and held Nigerians in disdain, some of us are starting to complain : “where is the economic policy and direction”

    The problem is not that this administration has not set forth some of their economic policies and direction, the problem is that Nigerians are not happy with the tough choices that this administration is making.

    Some Nigerians are finding it hard to accept that the era of $100/barrel oil is over – gone with the wind, forever. They want CBN to sell them dollars, at the official rate, to send their children to Nursery school in the United States and the United Kingdom

    Here are some of this administrations economic policies:

    1. Eradication of Boko Haram and securing our country- without peace you can’t have an economy;
    2. Eradication of corruption;
    3. Investing in our infrastructure;
    4. Supporting local manufacturing and Agriculture, including selling dollar to these sectors;
    5. Refusing to officially devalue the Naira e.t.c, e.t.c

    Look at Israel now. Had they gone back to Egypt back in the day, they probably would have been their until today

    They way for Nigerians to take advantage of this economy, is to start their own product or go into Agriculture. The money in Dasuki’s ATM has finished

    • MIke Oke

      This you people’s narrative about “16 years of PDP misrule” is getting worn already. Abeg find another lie. You’re just a learner. Go and meet Linus Mohammed for a refresher course. Others have moved on to blaming Lord Lugard and God. You you are still there blaming PDP. Iranu. Mtschewww.

      • Sustain Transformation

        Spot on. Couldnt have crafted this better

      • Onike24

        How can it be worn? Is it a lie? In a democracy, you choose the least worse option, not the best option Are you truly saying that Nigeria would have been better off with Jonathan at the helm of affairs? Really? Nothing grieves me more than obvious bigotry masquerading as Intellectualism, and on this thread, I have seen nothing more than unrepentant bigotry. Please by all means continue, we shall see where it gets us.

    • fld8778

      Wa o. You are good. Wondering how to respond to all the biased comments until I came across yours. You have said it all.

      • LagLon

        Erat.
        Pdp is apc.

  • FrankNinja

    Buhari has a security plan, an anti-corruption plan, a PDP decapitation plan, an anti-Biafra plan but a non-existent economic plan. He is behaving like someone chasing rats when his house is burning.

    He has less than 3 years to stabilize the economy and show that Nigeria of 2019 is better than Nigeria of 2015. The only minister in his cabinet moving at 120 kilometers an hour is Ibe Kachikwu. At least he is working to address the fault lines at NNPC – lack of focus, poor refineries, diversion of fuel, pipeline sabotage. But Kachikwu is against a lot of dark forces.

    For his other ministers, they are moving at the snail pace of their boss trying to understand their portfolios. Amaechi is focusing on the utterly uneconomic Abuja-Kaduna rail line which seems to have been sneaked in as a gift to former VP Namadi Sambo. Meanwhile where is the greenfield Lagos-Calabar project that links four ports (Calabar, Port Harcourt, Warri) and is far more strategic for easing congestion at Apapa and bringing back imports that have been lost to Cotonou? Amaechi should also be fast tracking the concessioning of the 5 new International Airports to international companies that know how to run airports. As the face of the country to international visitors, FAAN has helped create a very negative impression of Nigeria with their mismanagement of the various airports.

    Equally Fashola seems to be handicapped by the budget for works and power. Yet you would think in the interim he would be working to privatize the national grid to companies who can inject capital in its expansion and retain a minor FG stake. He should also revisit the weakest link in the power chain which are the distribution companies. The government should revoke the licenses of DISCOs that have failed to deliver on the targets upon which they bidded for those licenses and put them up for new bidders.

    • DrPak

      Wrong..he has only one year more to act. By 2017 party nomination politics will take over and nothing will make sense until May 2019….
      We must thank the writer for being a frank and candid patriot like Dele Momodu, Wole Soyinka and Oby Ezekwesili…these are nit enemies but friends telling him what everyone else can see.
      A budget enables a plan….what plan is the 2016 budget enabling?
      What are the goals of the govt in all sectors?
      What are the process and outcome indicators in 2yrs…5yrs?
      Dat no be wailing…it is a plan…and directs everyone public and private on how to conduct their businesses.
      Lol

  • Emeka Uwam

    Nigerians are getting impatient . I pray we get it right this time

  • Mayo

    Simon, you have propagated the same theory of APC – Buhari’s critics should be fair to him because nobody can solve all our problems in 10 months. The reason people are complaining is because since Buhari came to power, his actions (or inactions) has been that of someone with no plan &no visible action that he realizes what he has been elected to do. There are so many little things that Buhari could have done that would have made people not to complain, and to show that he has a sense of urgency.

    Buhari won elections, GEJ conceded so there was no worry about the mandate not being sure. Now imagine if this had happened – within the 2 months before he was sworn in, Buhari had picked members of his core team, had them sworn in immediately he won elections, publicly released his asset declaration forms as he had promised, assembled an economic team and gave them autonomy, gave EFCC marching orders to investigate and prosecute corrupt people without noise . Buhari’s standing would be totally different today. Yes, some people will complain but the average person will not. Buhari and APC squandered the early part of their time making noise and not doing anything. Buhari and APC also resorted to telling lies – I did not promise to make my asset form public within 100 days, I have to wait for CCB to verify it before making it public, the budget has not been passed and so we have a right to change the contents so there is nothing like the version that was submitted is not the same as the version about to be deliberated, GEJ did not buy weapons for the military, GEJ bought weapons but they were substandard and are malfunctioning.

    Nigerians including yourself have buried their heads in the sand and have refused to address some questions staring us in the face. How can a man who claimed he had to take a loan to purchase his presidential declaration forms, turn around in less than a year and declare the amount he did as his bank balance or tell us recently that he can afford to buy foreign currency in parallel market to pay for his kids to school abroad?

    Finally, you said – … I knew he would be highly constrained by his worldview. I worried about his economic philosophy. I also worried about his likely choice of core team members. Above all, I knew his handling of the Nigerian situation as a military man was not replicable in a democracy…. Why didn’t you voice this? Why didn’t you interrogate this? All these are the things that determine how effective a leader can be not just his ‘steeliness’ to fight corruption. If GEJ was not an option for you, why didn’t you try to educate the public about the other presidential candidates?

    • Emmanuel A.J

      Jonathan already took Nigeria to the black market to be auctioned. Period.

      • Mayo

        What has GEJ got to do with the items I outlined in my comment? Was it GEJ that prevented Buhari from forming his cabinet in the first 5 months, from assembling an economic team? Was it GEJ that made Buhari’s spokesmen to say Buhari did not promise to publicly release his asset declaration forms within his first 100 days?

      • Kelly

        Let’s assume he did, why can’t Buhari retrieve Nigeria from the black market since he has the power to do so? Are now you telling us that he is so stupid and clueless that he does not know the buyers or where the black market is located ? Or that He does not have the balls to do so? You fools wont stop fooling yourself defending this clueless Government without any iota of plan. PLEASE FOR THE TENTH TIME HE IS THE PRESIDENT AND NOT JONATHAN ANYMORE LET HIM ACT AS ONE AND DO WHAT HE WAS ELECTED TO DO.

    • LagLon

      keep it short bro.. ‘pmb sold everyone a dummy’ he is a crook and a fraud. simple.
      Kolawole and crew are happy they have the vp slot.. simple.
      constrained by his ‘worldview’… what has pmb done in the last 30 years?

    • LagLon

      mayo, prepare for the inevitable.
      either pmb keels over or nigeria does.
      for me having erdogan the destroyer ‘over for tea’ was the last straw.
      prepare. get the family safe, ensure assets/ investments are protected. start saving as much as you can.
      i still hope for the promised land, but the hate/ mistrust that pmb has reignited and that is now held by a new generation is too much so that promised land will elude us.
      in 2.5 years there is an election that cannot be lost and the corruption pressures will return.
      on the way the potential for calamity is extremely high.
      the us said 2015 for nigeria to end …gej ducked it.. the new dates is 2023/ 2027 (if pmb does one term) and thats the date of the muslim to christian power shift.

  • ParallaxSnap

    Good write up but predictable. The dilemma of a writer who doesn’t want to be seen as an opposition but who on the other hand is not happy with the way things are going. What does he do? He starts of by heaping praises on his subject before laying down the dynamite. Good tactics but quite predictable. You are now officially a wailing wailer!

    • http://www.deepwater-global.com Ahmed Omar

      Suggestively, an investigative journalist…..a friend(of Mr. President) who tells it as it is. Kudos Simon!

    • Itodo Okey Santos

      Very usual of Simon! Trying hard to stay on the fence always. But quite unfortunate!

      • Emeka Egwu

        Simon and Eric Osage of The Sun are the same.Always sitting on the face while also trying to be politically correct without sounding so

    • Ayinde

      very good observation. Segun is obviously being diplomatic in his comments. A president that is passionate had the benefit insight into the challenges of Nigeria as regards leadership and has aspired to that same leadership post for close to 12 years before achieving it yet lack a clear VISION or purpose he hope to achieve. The man is a FAILURE no two way to describe him. Simple and short-BUHARI IS A FAILURE . Let him go to Zambia and see the direction and path the President is taking the Nation-Zambia

    • Baron Roy

      Exactly! The guy is an invertebrate masquerading at having some spine! How a highly educated man would expect a perfect illiterate to launch a rocket to the moon beats me!! He helped package a conman, and he expected some miracle? Ridiculous!!!

  • Emmanuel A.J

    Can someone please remind me which Nigerian civilian government articulated its economic policy in black and white?

    • AriaFada

      True, but we voted for change and if change does not include articulating where you are taking the country then we might as well go back to the status quo.

    • Sustain Transformation

      Yaradua–>7 point agenda.
      GEJ–>Transformation Agenda.
      Go and research these. They were commissioned well thought out, well articulated, development agenda put together with world renowned developmental experts. These contained economic and developmental policies. Whether they were fully implemented to the letter is a discuss for another day. Hope this answers your question.

      • KlasJ

        Neither 7 Point Agenda nor Transformation Agenda were well articulated and well thought out.

        7 Point agenda was just a potful of wishful thinking. Many economists including Sanusi (at his confirmation hearing for the cbn governorship) wrote it off and advised the Yar’adua to reduce it to 2 or 3. GEJ did not waste time in jettisoning the 7 point agenda even while just completing the tenure of Yar’adua in 2010/2011

        Transformation Agenda of GEJ in 2011- 2015 was more of the fantasy of his supporters just like Buhari’s ‘body language’. Every good things no matter how inane is attributed to ‘transformation agenda of Mr President’ by his aides in the usual eye service nigerian officials are known for, even when nobody could refer to any document where the agenda are encapsulated.

        All achievements of GEJ are retrospectively attributed to Transformation Agenda. If it is well-articulated, why has there not been a scorecard of the failure vis-a-vis the success of the agenda? What are the milestones and time frame for achievement?

        In economic management, GEJ regime was more lucky than efficient which was why our naira value and foreign reserve didn’t appreciate even with consistent high oil prices. Within 6 months of the oil crash, GEJ devalued naira twice (nov 2014 and feb 2015) and by Iweala’s admission, FG was already borrowing to pay salaries in early 2015.

        • William Norris

          Say what you want about Jonathan. There’s ONE undeniable policy he tried to implement that would have done Nigeria substantial good – in Jan 2012 he tried to abolish fuel subsidies and regulated pricing.

          Nigerians, urged on by NLC and APC, rejected the policy and used strikes and riots to frustrate the government. Many APC leaders like Buhari, Tam David West and others claimed the subsidy didn’t even exist.

          Starting from that Jan 2012 to Dec 2012, the Nigerian Federation paid at least $25 billion in subsidies for petrol and kero that never reached the masses at the subsidized price.

          The current APC government paid $2.5 billion in just 6 months.

          The missed opportunity of abolishing fuel subsidy in Jan 2012 is DIRECTLY responsible for the economic crisis today.

          The current drain on the economy RIGHT NOW is subsidized and fixed forex price. In 3 years Nigeria will pay an even worse price for this policy.

          • KlasJ

            GEJ was not the first or only president to try to abolish fuel subsidies and not the only one to be fiercely resisted.

            IBB tried it in 1987 and even ingeniously introduced 2 tier pricing for commercial and private vehicles in order to mollify the labour union. He was resisted.

            Obj fought many times with NLC led by Oshiomole over fuel pricing. Each time, obj could not fully get his way and he was practically increasing fuel price every year during his tenure.

            GEJ was even lucky. The highest single increase ever achieved by any govt was by him. A whooping N32.50 per liter increase at a go. Juries are still out on what positive effect that increment had on the economy under Jonathan.

            Labour unions and so-called activists have never been partners in progress with any Nigerian government. Sorry to say.

      • Emmanuel A.J

        I hope you are not confusing rhetorical slogans for economic policies?

  • Daniel Obior

    No one can reasonably expects any head of state to fix Nigeria in four years or even eight years, given the long history of abuse previous administrations have subjected the country to, particularly the military. One would have expected a clearly defined direction within six months, from an administration headed by a competent person. There are certain qualities in a leader that are antithetic to progress in a profoundly plural society like Nigeria. Unfortunately, Buhari is richly endowed with those qualities. An ex-military despot cannot change Nigeria in 100 years, under a democratic setting. A man who is un-apologetically parochial cannot change Nigeria in 100 years. A man who lacks the educational competence by modern standards, cannot in 100 years. A man who would give annual pilgrimage to Mecca a higher priority than education cannot in 100 years. One can go on and on, ad infinitum. The issue is that the signs have been there all along. Collectively, we chose to ignore them in our judgement. Now the chips are down and we are expecting him to give what he does not have in the first place. He is not to blame. We are all culpable in this misadventure.

    • LagLon

      which ..WE chose to ignore them? the ‘we’s’ know themselves.
      the non-WE’s are quite relaxed and content in themselves. they called it and it is playing out. They are ahead in the preparations for the outcomes.
      the only WE is that we all have 3 years left.
      personally i think that pmb software has been hacked. PMB just needed to continue using the playbook the APC platform had delivered and he would have been a God.
      think he crashed after the election or tore up the playbook… hence the madness.

      • Baron Roy

        Lolzz. I thought I had bad mouth, but you are the boss!!! The guy tore the playbook, now he’s left playing alone in the sand…totally bereft of ideas…a shame!!!

        • LagLon

          Every day i hope for solid news… i hoped to be proved wrong… i still do.

  • MIke Oke

    Simon, I like that you have finally shown where your stand. To say I’m disappointed in you would be an understatement. Over the years I have read your articles relentlessly believing you were someone with a good grasp of things. But clearly your support for the man Buhari and your unfounded belief in his capacity to lead Nigeria proves that you are just a clueless writer.

    Buhari’s government has failed and it will never get better than this. Let that sink into your head. He never had the capacity to lead Nigeria, not in 1984 and certainly not in 2016. Being passionate about Nigeria is not all it takes to fix Nigeria. If it was Ola the bus conductor would equally make a good president as would Buhari. But we have given someone with the intelligence of Ola the bus conductor the reins of government. Why expect any more than we currently have? This is what we warned about before the elections but you guys thought it was all about GEJ. Well, let us all stew in your stupidity. We all deserve it.

    • DrPak

      If a President can’t create a vision and the strategic plan to actualize it….and needs people to remind him of this obviius chasm..you gave a good point.

    • Governor

      Wailing waiters you want him to produce 10 months in office after destruction of 16 years by your wailing party. Do you remember that Nigeria main source of income is oil and do you know how much is crude oil today. In d last 4 years when dumbo was in power oil sell for average of $100 per barrel and couldn’t save anything for the nation. Now is time for scarcity and without saving what will u do. If you are patient enough the hard time is for a while.

      • Naija United

        Clap for yourself. now the next Excuse. Remember nobody is stopping Buhari from assembling a formidable team to deliver results as advocated by Simon. If he failed to do that because of his narrow worldview u don’t begrudge anybody that criticise or ask questions because Buhari gave d chance for that. But By the way Can’t APC pple be intelligent to invent new excuses to defend buhari rather than this repetition of this stale 16yrs pdp destruction & 10 months of gmb, oil price fall, all critics are wailing wailers, oh it is the work of saboteurs blah blah blah…. only BAD workman quarrel with his tools

        • Zico

          Say whatever you like. PMB’s world view is 100 times better than GEJ’s.

      • MIke Oke

        Abeg Zombie go and bash your dumb head against the wall. “destruction of16 years” my foot. Why not start counting from Lord Lugard. Ewu. When GEJ tried saving in SWF who tried to stop him? Abeg make I hear word jor it’s morons like you that put us into this nonsense. We just have too many illiterates ruling us ably supported by even more illiterate followers.

      • Kelly

        My problem with Nigeria is that we have so many educated illiterates and I wonder if you are among the educated illiterates or just an outright illiterate, Well the wailers has been joined by every Nigerian because there is no APC filling station or power station generating electricity, we are all in the same country suffering from the stupidity of a few noise makers. Don’t worry about the wailers, I think your major concern now is about the future of your kids, (yes your kids) Because I don’t see how anybody who supported and still supports this government will have the mental capacity to make enough money to take care of his children in this comatose economy. Now you really need to think hard to figure out the way forward and with your thought pattern am worried you will be wailing for a long time.

      • Orlando

        So how long does he need? We know about the problems and that is why we elected him. It annoys me when people keep talking about the price of oil. How much oil does Kenya have? Does Botswana sell oil? Even Buhari himself is so fixated in oil that he has been running from one oil country to the other and even made himself Petroleum Minister. Why didn’t he make himself Agric Minister to show focus on an alternative to oil? 10 months is too long a time in politics. The morning normally tells the days.

      • Dayo Akom

        Is it the 16 years destruction that is preventing Buhari from having assembling a formidable team or it is the present price of oil that made him to run a government of vision less vacuum? You better examine your head properly or visit Aro for checking.

        • amakachude

          He used to reside there (Aro).

        • abodes_124

          Sometimes a problem is so enormous it paralyses thought and action. What you do is walk away and distract yourself for example by flying around the world aimlessly.

        • Zico

          What is your meaning of “formidable team”? Do you have better credentials than the Adeosuns, the Enelamas, the Udomas, the Fowlers, etc? It is you that needs to examine your head properly.

      • abodes_124

        Neither would he to be any further forward in another 3 years and 2 months after the ‘destruction of 16 years’ by the ‘ wailing party’. So nobody should talk rubbish when in 2019 he asks for another four years to try and clear the unclearable 16 years rubbish of the PDP

      • jasper123

        Invariably what you are making us understand is that this government has not made a dime in 10 months? Customs, NPA, FIRS and other revenue centers have not remitted into the so called TSA(whose idea was last goverment’s)? So in 10 months we have wasted the life of a nation because GEJ did not save( whatever that means)? What has this government spent on to kickstart an economy that needs serious direction? Campaign mode activated perpetually, so sad!

      • Zico

        Don’t mind Mike Oke. He is a blind GEJ supporter.

      • BankyMons

        How much was oil 1999? Obviously intelligent debate is never one of the strengths of APC shilłs.

    • Nathan

      You said it all sire, Simon is a hypocrite!
      He, like most Nigerians are masters of coy, subtlety, subterfuge, deceit and political correctness.
      Their character is at best chaff…!
      PMB does not have what it takes; he never did!

    • Onike24

      Buhari’s goverment has failed for not solving problems that took more than 16 years to create in less than one year? By your Yardstick Obama failed as did Dave Cameron in his first term! A farcical argument if I ever heard one.

      • Jon West

        The Certificateless One is not being accused of failure, which would be an uncharitable accusation after only one year. The accusation is a lack of vision, plans and programs for solving the myriad of problems he inherited plus those his lack of capacity imposed on him. Even a genius can not solve all of Nigeria’s problems in 10 years. However a total failure is one who is in power and has no idea of what to do to solve problems. That is what the Certificatelss One is. Really frighteningly idiotic he is.

        • Onike24

          The ” certificate less one that the Army has confirmed that he indeed had a certificate and the Military secretary that was the chief purveyor of that lie has since been sacked for getting involved in partisan politics. On the issue of having no vision, he has spent the last nine months fire fighting the inferno left by Jonathan both on the Economy where the coffers were left bare, in terms of terrorism where BH was holding 14 local government areas. It is amazing that people like you continuously deride a government that is 10 months old, but celebrated one that was EVIDENTLY bereft of ideas.

          • Jon West

            I will really love to see this certificate which has defied all human processes for public showing of a document. I don’t have a copy of my WASC taken in the 70s but will get a Certified true copy in a jiffy if required, but not a fraudulent Statement of Result in 2015 for an exam taken in 1953/54. I am also not aware that a military secretary was sacked for hiding the certificate. In any case the owner of the certificate should just publish a copy to shame people like me. After all he gleefully published his fraudulent Statement of result.
            As for the Boko Haram issue, perhaps you are resident on another planet, but if you are with us here on earth, you may have seen the assertions of the Senator representing Borno State(Central) that Boko Haram still has control of half of Borno State, and he should know, being an indegene and an APC senator. The Commander of the USA AFRICOM , General David Rodriguez,last week, in Washington DC, also confirmed the status of Boko Haram in Borno Sate undert oath, and he is not a PDP member or Jon West’s partner in anything.
            The trouble with you people who support the Certificatelss One is really a very Black and African one. Simply, an inability to admit mistakes and apologise. It was a great mistake to inflict the Certificateless One on us by Afonja’s descendants and even the journalists and Kongi who supervised this great mistake have virtually apologised as much as you expect them to, so please join them and save your soul.

          • Onike24

            “The trouble with you people is really a black African one” nothing bothers me more than self loathing for if you can describe a group to which you belong in such disparing term, and make such sweeping generalizations there can be no meeting of minds here. Ps Are all white Americans or non black Africans able to apologize and admit mistakes as a result of having less melanin? Also I must also have no certificate as I have no idea why School certificate is although no one has ever asked me because I have one first degree graduating with an upper second, two post graduate degrees, and I have been called to the bar in three jurisdictions including Nigeria. According to you I am a dullard because I cannot produce what has now become an irrelevant qualification. excellent thinking…

          • Jon West

            As a lawyer with bar qualifications in many jurisdictions , you must then know that there are constitutional requirements for certain positions. In Nigeria , the Presidency requires at least a WASC qualification, and the Certificateless One does not have it. Therefore he took what is not his according to your definition of justice. I hope that the previous President did not take what is not his, by running for the Presidency as allowed by the Nigerian constitution? I must congratulate you on your chains of degrees, but I am no longer impressed by all those things in Nigeria. After all Falana, , Itse Sagay, Ojerinde ,Soyinka and other revisionists also sport chains of degrees and even Nobel prizes, but we have seen through all that and I don’t want to be accused of racial or ethnic stereotyping, but there is really something wrong when people throw away everything they stand for in their twilight years, all for a mess of porridge. Really sad, very sad.

          • Onike24

            I know you are trying to obsfucate the issue, my point is that a school certificate is the Minimum qualification, but when your qualifications exceed the minimum, one assumes that it has become irrelevant and is no longer a relevant benchmark.. I used myself as an example to illustrate the fact not because I need validation from you or indeed anyone else.

          • Jon West

            If your qualifications exceed the minimum requirement, and the constitution stipulates the miminum requirement, why don’t you just produce the minimum requirement and move on to more important issues? Why make a song and dance of such a petty issue? Why produce a Statemnet of result, if you have the real certificate? Why not just ask Cambridge, the examining body, to please publish the copy and get the imbecile opposition people out of your hair? You don’t do this because you don’t have the minimum requirement, and that is really sad. Also sad that a lawyer with certifications in several jurisdictions cannot see the implications f such a simple legal misdemeanour for the credibility of someone who aspires to lead a country. Now I close my case.

          • Onike24

            You had no case to close! You keep repeating the same illogical argument. ” why make a song and dance of a petty issue” is a brilliant question that we should ask you!

          • jasper123

            Barrister Onike, Buhari never submitted a higher qualification, instead he sworn to an affidavit! When has affidavit become replacement for academic qualification? Sure you would employ me in your chambers should I present affidavit in lieu of certificates!

          • Onike24

            Barrister is not a title, it’s a profession.

          • Arabakpura

            But you have known him as a retired major general, a former head of state who attended senior military courses abroad!

          • jasper123

            Personal recognition is not a recognized qualification to become president! Our laws are clear in this regards! The question is he submitted affidavit in lieu of certificate, can you employ me based on affidavit even if I claim I am a professor of robotics engineering?

          • Arabakpura

            The power to clear or not to clear rests with INEC according to our Constitution! If I were you, I would take my battle to INEC!

          • jasper123

            quite correct! Thank God we now have precedence! The future is just very near!

          • Itodo Okey Santos

            ” BH holding 14 local government” seriously?
            If my memory serves me right, wasn’t presidential, parliamentary and Governorship elections conducted in these 14 local government ” held” by BH. How did GEJ perform the miracle?

            Some people are angry when they are referred to as zombies and followers of a dullard. But can someone suggest a better description for this group?

          • Onike24

            You know what? I would rather be called any name, zombie, dullard, foolish than willingly support someone who refused to understand a basic principle that children in nursery school understand; you do not take what is not yours. When we are still arguing about such a simple issue then it is clear that the cycle of poverty and corruption has made it impossible for people to think. Keep up the opprobrium, that is what will lead us to a better Nigeria!

          • abodes_124

            Why must we bring Abacha into this conversation. Yes GMB ran the PTF with him but that is only a tenuous connection. He did not aid and abet his looting as far as we are aware.

          • Onike24

            ?????

          • Itodo Okey Santos

            Elections was conducted in 14 local governments ‘held’ by Boko haram. The simple question put forward is; How did Gej perform the miracle? Just a simple answer is needed!

            As for basic principle that children in the nursery school understands, I think Buhari’s tenure at PTF, will be a good study book for the children.

            Hypocrisy and self deception is the worst injustice any can inflict on him or her self.

          • abodes_124

            Yes. APC supporters

          • jasper123

            Your inflation is now double digit, highest since 2012! Indeed he is solving our problems! Fighting BH with “Fake equipment” GEJ bought and putting them to a corner(he has tried),jailing all thieves except the converted thieves who are now saints! Autopilot to unknown is where we are bro!

          • Zico

            True talk Sir. He even referred to Mr. President as “idiotic” when he (Jon West) is the real idiot.

      • jasper123

        Some people talk as if Nigeria was heaven before 1999! Good roads, constant light, solid transport system, sustainable growth and development…. Suddenly 16 years rubbished all! We are what we make ourselves to be!!

        • Onike24

          I am not even going dignify this comment!

          • Arabakpura

            You are a sound mind – QED!

    • mentalks

      So liking the persona of a man he has personally interviewed and pointing out his failings in the process makes Simon a hypocrite? I guess only people that conform with your personal ideas of life aren’t hypocrites then? How convenient.

      • MIke Oke

        See me see trouble o?! Please where did i call Simon a hypocrite? I said he is clueless, and has no grasp of things, and plus that he has a thick skull. I never said he was a hypocrite o! Ah please o don’t bear me false witness!

        • Toby

          Majority of people on this forum thinks he is though.

        • William Norris

          LOL….

          that’s quite a denial. I didn’t call you bastard, I only said your mother is a prostitute….

    • abodes_124

      Bus conductors are not bad . We have one ruling Venezuela admittedly he is not doing well like ours but yes ‘passionate’ bus conductors can be presidents !

    • Zico

      Mike Oke, you are just a blind GEJ follower and it is a shame that in spite of on going revelations as to how his Government mismanaged and ruined the Country’s economy, you are still saying all these. You will see. In fact you will be put to shame when things take a good turn for the better for Nigeria under the present administration.

    • Ahilabegbe

      Nice one Mike.

  • D.law85

    Mr simon it has finally begin to done on you sai baba fanatcs what a shame on you. It start with the court cases from appeal to high court to supreme court at the peak of boko haram determine to hold regions in the in the country that buhari had to say a war against boko haram is a war agaist the north and then came the apc insulting, politicizing and criticizing evry move of gej, the usa and its allaies had to place an embargo on nig not to sale arms to him couse they were been threatened by our growing economy gej held on . striving to make the country beta. Apc was always at hand to criticize with out prefering any solution to therecriticism, i guess u even know more than me. Fast forward to buhari gej willing asepted the election result and handed over no litigation that draged from tribunal to supreme court boko haram was half way defited pdp hasnt recovered from defeat that means lese criticism. And is still cant manage the economy. Simon shame on you and apc that cant even tell us there short and long term goals again shame on you.

  • gohen

    Simon, I don’t know which country you live in, your colleagues are smartly running away from President Buhari and you are busy looking for more ways to defend a man who is already at his wits end. The issues are this,President Buhari is on a revenge mission, he is not here for any development. I have said severally, even if President Buhari wants to make some inroads towards upliftment of this nation, there are just too many people like you ready to praise any action he takes. So how will he ever know that he is not doing the right thing when there is an abundance of people like you making excuses for him.
    You brazenly elucidated his authenticity and morality, but you failed to mention the 2.8 billion dollars that got missing under him in late 70s. You fail to mention the PTDF brouhaha under his watch. and you still did not tell us about the 17 briefcases of old, and his inability to produce a certified copy of his result. I am assuming that the original is missing, tell me do all these point to uprightness an authenticity ?
    Buhari, the APC and their band of witches were part of the reason that the last government did not succeed. They stood to oppose everything the last government did,they never cared about Nigeria, buhari cared only about revenge, and the APC cared only about how to get power.
    I t was so bad that the APC never sent any representative to the national constitution conference, This same Buhari openly said that a war declared on Boko haram is war on the North, now you are giving him credit for the inroad he has made in the war against boko haram. this was the same person that was against such a war. look at the sovereign wealth fund, deregulation of upstream, subsidy removal, PRESSID scholarship scheme etc all these were roundly condemned by APC
    Any suprastructure built on a weak infrastructure will soon fail. Buhari is the suprastructure, THE MERGER OF ACN,/APP/CPC.. AND THE nPDP are THE INFRASTRUCTURE.
    It is repulsing that as enlightened as you are , you are still blaming the PDP’s 16 years of misrule, you fail to mention that 8 of those years belong to Obasanjo who blew 16 billion dollars on electricity (at about the same time Lula da Silva of brazil spent 16 billion dollars and got 10,000 megawatts ready for the world cup that was to be hosted 3 years later) is now APC’S godfather, and that the likes of Tambuwal, El Rufai, poster boy Amaechi, and others too numerous to mention were part of this 16 years.
    Let’s assume that fixing the economy is difficult But where is the road map. Where is the modest lifestyle he promised, obviously the following questions are not difficult

    1 Why is Baba not dealing with the banks for round tripping, ( also known as LAZY SUSAN) . The banks get dollar for 199 naira, and each time YOU USE YOUR CARD ON FOREIGN TRANSACTIONS YOU ARE CHARGED 340-380.CLEAR BROAD DAY LIGHT ROBBERY

    2 why has baba not reduced the size of the presidential air fleet from 10 to 5 like he promised. He so much criticized Obasanjo (his new found love and mentor) then for travelling too much.

    3 why will baba accept budget for food in Aso rock when baba is receiving his salary

    4 Why will baba not have an economic team

    5 why will baba allow the domestic spending of aso rock to be 1.5 billion, why Jonathan’s budget was 700 million.

    Simon what baba needs is genuine advice and sincere criticism.

    • Governor

      Official wailing wailers

      • chi708

        grow up and have an intelligent discussion or are you too unable to do so like your idol Buhari? Stop with this wailing wailers rhetoric it’s getting old. SMH

      • Baron Roy

        At least they have the sense to wail on this shambolism called governance! You wouldn’t know you were in trouble even if you were swallowed by it! Compare your personal economy in the past 10 years pre-APC, have you progressed or retrogressed? You ought to be wailing for your lost soul…

        • Governor

          Which lost soul. I’m better off if you need to know. In your right sense how can you compare administration of less than a year with 16 years of destruction by your wailing party. Can you tell me how much is crude oil per barrel today and price 2 years ago. We know corruption will fight back but more than prepare for this. We are of all the orchestrated moves to undermine the Government of the day.

    • Baron Roy

      I need to buy you a drink, seriously! You shoot from the hips and straight! Anytime I read articles from invertebrates like Simon, Momodu and their ilk, I often wonder how I’m forced to be sharing the same country with such characters!!! I see their names and I unconsciously add IRRESPONSIBLE as their middle names!!! Pathetic journalists!!!

      • gohen

        Simply following your step sir ! Next time let all of us go for the jugular !

      • Governor

        Simon expresses his opinion and you don’t need to agree with it but that doesn’t mean you can him names. I wonder which country you have been leaving before maybe not Nigeria that things had become so strange to you. Level of destruction your wailing party left behind is what we are sorting out.

  • James Gunn

    Simon, stop talking from two sides of the mouth. You the media are partly responsible for the successful brainwashing of the Nigerian populace especially the youths which led to the catastrophe of the Buhari presidency. I begged, pleaded, and almost fought some of my friends last year when they told me they wanted to vote for Buhari and the APC. They said he’s a strong man, with experience and intelligence. He’s better than Jonathan. I told them that’s a blatant lie. APC is just a propaganda machine. Anyways we all know how that turned out. Now we are here. The whole country is on the verge of collapse. GDP is shrinking, companies are folding up daily. I would have said I told you so but I am also suffering from their massive error. Currently Donald Trump and the other republican candidates are about to have their 11th debate. Mind you, this debate is for party primaries not election proper but primaries. Several candidates have dropped out but the true mentality, experience, temperament, mindset and intellectual capabilities of the different candidates is there for all to see. Americans know their candidates in and out. Its so hot over there that there are violent protests in the states at rallies and fora. Here we actually defended Buhari when he said he was not interested in a debate. A debate that would have exposed his short comings and his ineptitude on handling the economy or important issues in our society. A debate that would have shown us his worldview like you put it. Now, Its all excuses upon excuses. The latest now is crude oil price fall and the stories that we import too much. Unfortunately, because many Nigerians find it difficult to research any information, we swallow everything we are told hook, line and sinker. The questions are Why is the Naira the most affected currency of all members of OPEC? Other oil producers are suffering but not as bad as Nigeria. Answer : Bad management and economic policies. We have been spending a trillion naira on fuel subsidy each year for the last 5 years. This is money that would have been used to build up our Forex reserves but when the last government tried to cancel the subsidy we refused. People tell me Obasanjo also paid subsidy but I ask them one question, What was Nigeria’s daily consumption of Petrol then compared to now? It is now put at 40 million litres daily. This is a huge drain if we are importing even half of this. Now we are broke. We have ourselves to blame. As for this rubbish about imports and love of foreign goods, its all noise. The laptop you used to write this article. Did we manufacture it? The smart phone you used to tell your assistant what you need, did we manufacture it? Please!!! Nigeria is NOT in the top 50 countries which spend the highest on imports. America, China, Germany, France, Russia all spend more than a trillion dollars each on imports annually. We spend about $60 billion dollars per annum on imports. Egypt spends more than us on imports so whats the noise about. The MAJOR problem is we import what we are NOT supposed to import. For instance we spend 40% of our Forex on importation of petroleum products. This is what is killing our economy. You export crude and import petrol. We effectively cancel out our export earnings. This is the major problem. Importing what you should be producing locally. 20% of our imports are spent on importing agricultural produce especially staple foods like rice, poultry, oil, etc. This is already 60% of our Forex. If we produced these locally, this huge funds would have been channeled into other important things like equipment and infrastructure. This is our problem. Buhari is a disaster. He has no requisite knowledge and no leadership qualities whatsoever. In a world ranking of leaders, in my opinion he would come last or second to last. His utterances are becoming more and more disrespectful and condescending. I can only laugh at those who voted for him. How a president can say” I send my children abroad because I can afford it’ when saying the CBN cannot fund Forex for education, shows the utter contempt he has for the people he’s supposed to be leading. Does he imagine its a matter of affordability. If the President can get access to Forex to send his children abroad to school, why can’t the average Nigerian do the same. I pity those who were brainwashed enough to vote for him. I can only say brainwashed because I don’t know how a person can vote for an ex coup plotter. In some countries he would have been executed long ago. Truth be told though, I never expected anything from Buhari as a president. You cannot give what you do not have. Its those who voted for him I pity.

    • William Norris

      I’m in the same position as you. I spurned and dismissed 2 friends from my life because of the fuel subsidy issue in Jan 2012. Not just because of the disagreement but because it showed me they were unintelligent.

      The break was final when they decided to vote for Buhari. Anyone who voted for APC is worse than a monkey.

      • Baron Roy

        You’re being too kind; monkeys are actually appalled that some people could vote for APC! Nigeria might have been better off if those creatures that voted these fraudsters had been monkeys!!!

        • Kelly

          They mental capacity of those voters and their reasons, keeps me thinking, if God really created these ones in His image. Because I know there is nothing human in their argument and reasoning. So thanks for making me know that they are indeed some alien creatures. Now I can sleep and stop worrying myself trying to figure them out. WHAT A RELIEF!!!

      • mentalks

        Are you saying majority of Nigerians are monkeys and you are most likely the most intelligent Nigerian alive? Such comments on public forum already puts you in a bracket. Decode it.

        • MIke Oke

          Please don’t insult monkeys here abeg! What do you mean sef?! Monkeys would have never voted for a president who will not give them banana, they are much smarter than that, or has Buhari given you food to eat?

          • William Norris

            LOL…..somebody has a sharp mouth here !!!

        • William Norris

          Yes, most Nigerians are not intelligent at all. Blacks or Negroes are the least intelligent race, that’s why there’s not ONE SINGLE nation state dominated by Blacks that the VAST MAJORITY of its citizens would not migrate out of if given the chance. Read the paragraph well.

          Now before you go off, Blacks being the least intelligent DOES NOT MEAN that each and every one of them is unintelligent. Statistically it means that individuals of high intellect tend to occur LESS FREQUENTLY among Blacks and MORE FREQUENTLY in other races. That’s only the broadest of a large body of evidence. Another is that Blacks tend to be much more RELIGIOUS & SUPERSTITIOUS than other races.

          Nigeria is uniquely dysfunctional because it’s the LARGEST COLLECTION OF BLACK NEGROES on the planet.

          Good thing though that intelligence can be cultivated and passed on. So there’s hope for Nigeria IF the people care to take the necessary measures.

    • KlasJ

      Some of the problems you hold buhari responsible for actually rightly belong to previous government(s)

      How does removal of subsidy on fuel reduce the demand for forex to import it? Don’t tell me refineries will miraculously spring up because of that. Refineries abroad from where we import collect full market price, so subsidy is not an issue in setting them up locally. Dangote and Orient are building even with subsidy regime. It is the past government that failed in getting refineries up.

      Without local production, forex will continued to be used to finance importation of fuel even without subsidy

      You agree that we import what we are not supposed to import. Buhari removed 41 of such items from getting forex from official source. He did ban them. If you want to import them and you feel the market can pay any price for them, then source for forex at black market rates. At least he has conserved forex from that.

      The other countries you listed that you said import more than Nigeria. What constitute the bulk of their imports? Consumer finished goods like Nigeria or raw materials and industrial goods to which value will be added and re-exported?

      The simple problem Nigeria is facing today is that there is very low supply of forex because of the low price of our major source -crude oil. Diversification of any economy is not achieved in 10 months.

      • William Norris

        Yes, abolishing subsidized and regulated fuel prices AND privatizing the petroleum sector will lead to

        1. Stable fuel supply – no more scarcity

        2. Will encourage investors to build refineries.

        3. Which will drastically reduce imports and even generate exports.

        EVIDENCE – cement sector reforms.

        Go and read up and learn.

        • KlasJ

          You just parroted the same excuse that past government was giving for not getting the refineries to work.

          What concerns refinery with subsidy? What is subsidized is the pump price not refinery price to marketers. Pump price can either be paid fully by the consumers (no subsidy), fully by govt (100% subsidy) or shared by govt and consumer as presently obtained. In all these, it is between marketers and consumers/govt. nothing involve refineries.

          The marketers must pay the refineries fully before they are allowed to ship the product. Currently with subsidy, Nigerian marketers pay foreign refiners to buy products regardless of how the marketers recoup their cost from consumer and govt. What will change if the refiners had been based in Nigeria and not abroad? Nothing.

          Regarding stable fuel supply if subsidy is removed. Really? Diesel and aviation fuel have been deregulated for more than 10 years now. How stable is their supply?

          Dangote did not wait for subsidy removal to set up his refinery. Same goes for Orient.

          • William Norris

            Unfortunately subsidy and regulated prices matter.

            Orient is not producing anything.

            Dangote has already explained HOW his refinery will conduct business. The key is that it’s located in an EPZ and as such is not subject to regulated pricing. You can do a Google search for the story.

            In the end Dangote will be exporting his products into Nigeria just like foreign refineries. If the current laws and regulations remain, the scarcity situation will NOT change.

            Nigeria used to have acute scarcity of phone lines and cement. Fuel scarcity can ve solved the same way, via privatization and deregulation. Simple.

            Regulated pricing is the reason for forex scarcity today. That is contributing to the scarcity of diesel because importers can’t get forex. When the forex market was more elastic there was no diesel shortage.

            That’s why forex regulations are far more dangerous to the economy. Forex affects EVERYTHING.

          • Emeka Egwu

            I didn’t finish reading ur last comment but has to correct a very erroneous impression:The removal of fuel subsidy has everything to do with d workability of our refineries.Same way the unbundling of NITEL make telecommunication easier and more profitable.People like u argued that government didn’t need privatisation to make our telecommunication work but u have seen it.Infact removal of fuel subsidy and the consequent de-regulation of the Petrol section will not only improve our refineries but will open up the economy with multiple diversifications!Dont let anybody tell u otherwise.Why is Arik Airways doing good while Nigeria Airways couldn’t hold its own?where’s our Nigeria Shipping Line?How come that NITEL couldn’t give up to half a million Nigerians telephone lines for over 45 years but MTN alone gave us over 100 million lines in less than 20 yrs?same with glo,airtel,etisalat etc.Choice brings in competition and competition breeds efficiency.Dangote and Orient can be yardstick cos they have peculiar advantages and wouldn’t be a yardstick

        • Emeka Egwu

          Thank you my brother.How would they know when parochial politics has taken over a better part of our thinking faculties uh-huh

      • Emeka Egwu

        You got it wrong bro.To start with removal of fuel subsidy will not only free the excess forex used in such nonsense but will free the section to open market economy to allow for free participation which eventually will make refineries work optimally amidst competition.We played dangerous politics with it and that politics is still holding us down bcos those who played it are afraid to own up hence running in circles and dilly dallying!you talked about banning of items as the do it end all of preserving our forex but u should know that the one-singular act of removing the biggest scam in our forex swindle aka fuel subsidy will free that our main forex earner crude oil,and the raw materials from that singular act of refining our crude will have multiplier effects and most of those products u talk about can no more be profitably imported into our Shores as we have alternatives here.The long and short of it is that we were sold a dummy and the only way to extricate ourselves is by acknowledging the fact and making a clean cut out of it.No need looking for excuses and being afraid to accept our faultlined

    • UOU

      Nothing to add, the message is clear

    • Iskacountryman

      all i can tell simon is that it is dangerous to ask a fulbe…’where is the beef’?…it is a very dangerous question….

    • Calabarboy

      I could not have said it better. I am one of those who campaigned for Buhari and to say that I am disappointed in the handling of the the economy is an understatement.

    • Emeka Egwu

      May God continue strengthening u.Those that sold us the dummy are today adding insult to injury by picking our brains.Insteaf of coming out to accept their mistake or misjudgment they still think they can confuse our thoughts the more.Anyway the good thing is that they are not exempted from the catastrophic result.The bad thing is that they won’t just let us suffer what they plunged us into but will continue branding us fools with very short memories or no memories at all

    • Onike24

      You say Buhari is a disaster? I take it you advocated voting for Remi Sonaiya and her party, because if your advocated maintaining the status quo your comment is nothing short of a Joke! Jonathan was president for six years with oil @ $100 per barrel, with no savings to show for it nor with the development to reflect the price of crude! You say that our currency has suffered the most, that is factually inaccurate ask the Angolans or the Venezuelana! I am honestly sick and tired of the revisionist history on the Jonathan administration, it was both morally and financially bankrupt and utterly bankrupt of ideas, a man who boosted of buying private jets, Boko Haram was taking positions; running rampage,a man who allowed and participated in steadily stoking the fires of religious and tribal division. We became a running Joke to the rest of the world, and Buhari is to blame because he can’t sort out the mess in less than 10 months? Really?

      • James Gunn

        Truly I advocated maintaining the status quo because I do not believe in experiments. Buhari was not a better alternative. The APC government currently in power has no idea for how to move the country forward. 9 months wasted on excuses and blame games. The only minister in this govt that seems to be working is Ibe Kachikwu. It takes a lot to move Saudi Arabia and Russia to thge negotiating table. True they are both experiencing income shortfalls and budget deficits but they are also two proud oil behemoths. Ibe Kachikwu gave them an out and made them save face by being the one to initiate OPEC and non OPEC talks. They can say its because of pressure from the Nigerian OPEC president that they decided to freeze output but we know they are starting to feel the pinch.
        His restructuring of the NNPC is also spot on. There will be teething troubles and resistance but it seems he has the will and the knowledge to push through his reforms. The Attorney general is an inept official. His (Buhari) anti corruption hullabaloo will be found out. This is not a dictatorship where you are judge jury and executioner. His idea also to take on the IOCs in court for flagrant under reporting of cargoes would have been a master stroke but he chose to sue them in Nigerian courts. This is inefficient. He could have sued them in the US because US also has jurisdiction and US judicial system kis not prone to abuse, corruption and elongated cases like ours and the US can actually enforce their court judgements. The Lassa Fever pandemic has already shown the epic incompetence of the Health Minister. The budget padding and replacing (missing) shenanigans is actually an impeachable offence in some democracies and at least should have led to the sack of the Minister of Budget and Planning. Look my friend. The list is endless. Government is not about one man. Its a whole organ that works to move the country forward. You say Jonathan boasted of buying private jets. Well I tell you this fact. No Nigerian President has ever bought as much military equipment for the Armed Forces as Jonathan procured. Keep giving excuses for a failure. I will never. The policies that this government is celebrating ie. The TSA, The BVN, the IPPSS and others were created by the former government. 10 months down the line this govt has yet to create or introduce any relevant policy. Finally, Kemi Adeosun. A former Commissioner of Finance in Ogun State is Buhari’s Finance Minister. What a joke!!

        • Onike24

          ” I advocated the status quo because I don’t believe in experiments” honestly I don’t have time to waste.. The disingenuousness in that statement alone, leaves me short of words, which I can assure you is a rare occurrence! Jonathan procured more military equipment than any other President? Another factual inaccurancy otherwise known as a lie….

      • James Gunn

        No savings. When GEJ and Ngozi Okonjo Iweala said fuel subsidy will ruin us, where were you. 1 trillion naira on subsidy annually for the last 5 years. Where do you think the money to pay for that came from? Sambisa Forest???

      • Toby

        Dishonest comments.

        • Onike24

          Indeed…. It seems we live in a topsy turvey world; where truth is falsehood and falsehood truth.

          • Itodo Okey Santos

            And you are an architect of that! You are very good at it. May be because you are a lawyer. Lol!

      • Dayo Akom

        You are a dishonest fellow there is no doubt about that.

      • Mayo

        With all due respect, GEJ did not stoke the fires of religious or tribal division. Can you point to at least 3 statements of his that stoked religious/tribal divisions? Ango Abdulahi et al said GEJ stole the turn of the North and that they would make the government ungovernable for him, Buhari himself during an interview said – when Niger Deltans carried arms, the government gave them money and sent them abroad but when Northerners carried arms, government is killing them, and destroying their homes. He also said in the same interview this was tantamount to a war against the North – all of this was long before he decided to contest and long before Boko Haram officially said Muslims not in support of them were also their targets and they started targeting fellow Muslims. Govenor Nyako of Adamawa wrote a letter to all the Northern Governors and said Boko Haram was a ‘phantom organisation’ which does not exist and was simply an excuse for GEJ to commit genocide in the Muslim North. Nyako also said GEJ is from the Eastern region which, was responsible for the killing of Northern political elites on the 15th of January 1966. Atiku’s speech at the PDP presidential primaries during GEJ’s first contest was all about ‘vote for me because it is time for the North to rule’, El Rufai once issued a statement after a Boko Haram attack stating that PDP was the one exploding bombs and that PDP was Boko Haram, the Sultan of Sokoto issued a statement after a bomb blast saying ‘it is curious that once it is time to renew the state of emergency by the government, bombs start going off everywhere,

        With all of the above statements, who would you say was stoking the embers of religious and tribal divisions?

        I’m aware that you have said that in your opinion, GEJ was the worst president Nigeria ever had. It is your opinion, you have a right to that and I respect that. But I also canvass that even when we ‘reject’ someone, we also stick to the facts when we condemn the person.

        • Onike24

          I will quickly address the question you ask ( I take it it wasn’t a rhetorical question) Femi Fani Kayode who is well known for his incredibly bigoted statements was no less than the spokesperson of his Presidential campaign. The PDP of which he was party leader continuously referred to the APC as the Janjaweed party, the janjaweed you must know where a religious militia used by the mainly Islamic northern Sudanese to terrorize the mainly Christian south. OBJ in his infamous letter stated that when BH started taking territory he spoke to Jonathan, who replied that if my enemies are killing each other why should I care? Jonathan replied that letter he did not once refute the allegation. Does that sound like the actions of a Unifier? GEJ was without doubt the worst president we ever had the misfortune to elect and if in the highly unlikely event that PMB surpasses him in that regard, I will be the first to say so. I stand for objectivity, I have no dog in this fight.

          • Mayo

            You are correct, that the PDP on some occasions referred to APC as Janjaweed party. That was totally wrong. But let’s be honest, PDP only resorted to calling APC these names after some of the points I had earlier mentioned had occurred, after APC (or the predecessors of APC) had repeatedly either said PDP was actually Boko Haram or that the government was deliberately using Boko Haram to decimate the North so that GEJ would win election and after top Northern and religious rulers had repeatedly refused to condemn the wanton acts of violence by Boko Haram because Boko Haram was initially targeting just the military and Christians (remember when it was almost a certainty that a bomb would explode every Sunday). APC had ‘demonized’ PDP as being the sponsor of Boko Haram and so PDP fought back. I don’t condone PDP resorting to the same tactics that APC was using but if you say GEJ fanned the embers of religious and tribal division, then by the same logic APC members and Buhari also did the same. I remember I was aghast when Buhari gave that interview and compared Boko Haram to Niger Delta struggle and referred to a war on Boko Haram as being a war against the North. Just Google it and read the full interview. You will be shocked. I couldn’t believe a former President, a former General who had once defied civilian authority (President Shehu Shagari) when his Battalion was chasing Chad insurgents out of Maidugri could descend so low just because of tribal sentiments.

            With respect to Obasanjo’s letter, Obasanjo said a lot of things that were just nonsensical. Didn’t Obasanjo in the same letter accuse GEJ of training snipers (he even mentioned a number) to kill his political opponents? And yet Obasanjo offered no shred of evidence. El Rufai then said he had it on good authority that he was number 3 on the kill list and Buhari was no 1 on the same kill list. This is the kind of nonsense people were spewing just because of politics. In my opinion, there were just some parts of that letter that GEJ shouldn’t respond to. Even if Obasanjo claimed in his letter that GEJ told him ‘if my enemies are killing each other why should i care’, on the average Obasanjo’s word cannot be trusted. This is the same Obasanjo who is still claiming today that he didn’t agitate for a third term even after several people have publicly written about having discussions with him about it. Condolezza Rice, even stated the same thing in her book, yet Obasanjo is still denying that today.

            Like you, the only dog I have in this fight is that I want whoever is the President to do well because it will also benefit me. But I do not believe that APC is better than PDP and I also believe that while GEJ failed woefully in some areas, there are lots of things he is being blamed for which are simply not true.

          • Onike24

            @ Mayo, to be honest, I take the time to reply to your post because you succeed in marshaling your points without resorting to abuse, which sadly is way we exchange views in Nigeria and I have come to respect that. However, with the greatest respect I have never read that interview in which Buhari compared BH to the Niger delta militants. I must admit I cannot recall which party started the name calling, but I remember Gen Azazi who stated that Boko Haram is PDP and PDP is Boko haram, was he also APC? I remember having a conversation with the MP that represented me in Parliament who had the highest security clearance in the Uk because he sat on the defense and intelligent committee in parliament and he was quite clear that BH prevailed because our government was not committed to defeating them! He had no reason to lie. When those boys were slaughtered in Boni Yadi can you remind us what Mr President did? What about those poor Chibok girls? We were told that it was figment of our imagination and it took two whole weeks for Jonathan to even address his electorate. Who does that? You also stated that Obasanjo’s word cannot be trusted, but why didn’t Jonathan refute it? As I mentioned earlier, I have no dog in this fight, I and my better half left our Jobs, came home to vote for Jonathan because we felt every Nigerian can and should aspire to be President, and again, I voted For Buhari because I Know that he has the integrity to ” reset” our values, which really do not exist. Finally, Buhari was accused of saying the blood of the baboon will flow, etc, a typical Hausa proverb which I know because I went to a Unity school in the eighties and picked up Hausa interacting with my Hausa friends. He was misquoted and that lie persists the till today, because in Nigeria the truth is a lie and the lie is a truth. Finally, when Babaginda was ” stepping aside” he gave a speech in which he said ” history will judge us. I listened to that speech siting next to a great uncle who was once CJN and he retorted” and it will judge you harshly! My point being Jonathan has written his history and he will be Judged accordingly, nothing you or I write will change it. PMB on the other hand is just starting his, shouldn’t we wait at least the end of his first term to Judge?

          • Mayo

            My suspicion (I must confess I have no proof of this) is that GEJ initially handled Boko Haram with kid gloves because he believed that unleashing the full force of the military on them would be seen as a ‘minority’ attacking the Northern Fulani especially given the fact that he had just won an election where the North accused him of usurping their turn. This would ‘ryhme’ with the comments of your MP. For this I blame GEJ. I believe that his first duty as a commander in Chief should be to secure life of citizens no matter whose ox is gored but at the same time, I understand that some ‘finesse’ had to be applied. And the Northern politicians wasted no time in portraying GEJ as being incompetent because of it. Obasanjo had a similar attitude when Sharia law was introduced in the country. Instead of asking his AG to approach the Supreme Court to challenge the constitutionality of having 2 sets of laws, he chose to do nothing because as he said (I’m paraphrasing here) – it’s all politics and will peter out. Today, we know better.

            Overall, let us once again agree to disagree.

            PS: I like your statement – Jonathan has written his history and he will be Judged accordingly, nothing you or I write will change it.

          • Onike24

            @ Mayo, it’s that initial kid glove treatment that for me is unforgivable, how else where the Northern politicians to react, tens of thousands died, Villages were decimated, we just got the impression that some people were not worthy of having their lives protected because they were Muslims. I remember that the only reason that I got compelled to post comments was because of the ” all Muslims are terrorists narrative” and not once did my president say ” it was not about Islam” instead he let Orisejafor with whom he had a close relationship say the most aggregious things, despite the fact that he knew for a fact that BH didn’t discriminate in killing. Also Jonathan received security reports when Gadaffi fell, Al Qeada in the Islamic Magreb would continuously move further west, remember they occupied Mail. That’s just on security. What about the corruption? What I really cannot get over is that you are actually willing to sweep that under the carpet. I personally can never ever defend corruption. I live in a society where corruption exists but if you are caught, the book is thrown at you! I agree we should agree to disagree.

          • Mayo

            Note: I haven’t swept corruption under the carpet. Our discussion was primarily centered around the heightening of religious/ethnic tensions.

          • William Norris

            You’re so on point. Very fact based comment, no bias. And so intelligent.

            1 bottle of Guinness stout for you, I know you’re tired after all that typing LOL

      • Tony Oshea

        When GEJ was president the mile 12 Massacre or mayhem between Yoruba and Fulani never occurred.Agatu massacre was a fairy tale then.Disobedience of court orders,disdain and disrespect for supreme court justices was sacriledgeous .Under GEJ, budget PADDING was a Chinese phrase.There was religious harmony and that fact remains a sanctity.

        • Onike24

          When GEJ was president, children in a Federal Goverment College were murdered in their beds, Girls were abducted from schools, villages were decimated, and bombs went off every day. And as for religious harmony? Weren’t all Muslims terrorists according to GEJ?

          • ‘ned

            Onike24, am responding to this late but I want to ask the type of gloves this government is handling the Fulani Herdsmen with? The problem is that whichever we look at it, there is a dearth of leadership in Nigeria.

            When Jonathan was elected, T. Y. Danjuma urged him to seize the moment and confront issues but he did not. Today, the same thing is happening in that the moment is not being seized. Fuel subsidy came and went, ministers as well, the budget debacle had no minister fired.

            Jonathan started this same way and then it was all frittered away.

          • Onike24

            The goverment has to take action, how do we have people roaming the country armed to the teeth? It is not acceptable, innocent people have lost their lives, land that should be used for agriculture is lost to cows! But the difference between PMB and PGEJ is that this one will do something decisive. The Budget debacle had a Very high level official fired, it’s a start, but you are quite right there is a lot to be done.

  • KWOY

    Who among the present team in power, I may ask, was not until now PDP? & where were you when saint Buhari was for 12 years contesting against Obasanjo?

    • gohen

      KWOY ! Exactly my point

  • John

    The God of writhing entered the pen today. One of the best write up in recent time. Three serious short comings of PMB regime.
    1. No economic blueprint
    2. EFCC has lost direction.
    3. Campaign promises are suppose to be binding but flouting them is tantamount to betrayal

    • Baron Roy

      The god of Writing hasn’t entered his pen yet; the god just flew past his table as he was writing and never touched the pen in any way!

  • Toby

    Has anyone seen Fashola lately? Ghost of himself.

    • Drake Solo

      Fashola has been exposed as a timid dummy he is. The loquacious ‘performer’ can’t see free funds the way he saw it as Lagos governor. All the razzmatazz of senate hearing is gone.

      He will go down in history as the worst power Minister.

  • Jon West

    Simon Kolawole, grand master of political correctness, when will you become your own man? I have asked this question ad neaseum. You butter up the Certificateless One before you then smash into him. Why don’t you just smash into him? What are you afraid of? You are a national journalist with some following, so the onus is on you to say the truth and nothing but the truth in matters of national importance.
    I am quite surprised that the Boko Haram problem is gone and that soldiers no longer stage “tactical retreats” to neighbouring countries. However, I am aware that in spite of our “technical” victory over the insurgents (apologies to Lai Mohammed), Cameroonian forces recently recaptured a major border town and handed it back to Nigerian forces , who were supposed to be in control of the town. This is the new government by propaganda and you are already sucked into it.
    As fo the PDP’s serial misrule over 16 years, perhaps we should regard it as a misadventure and what in business terms is called a Sunk Cost. It is irrecoverable, so we should just forget it and move forward. This constant dwelling on the past shows plain incompetence and unpreparedness for the job. Obama and Tony Blair met worse economic and political situations, but just got on with the job of salvage. The Certificateless One, by your reluctant admission, has no business superintending our affairs, but wishy washy, politically correct and opportunistic media people like you, conned the instant gratification-infused populace into extolling a relic and inflicting him on our hapless country.
    So Kachikwu is fast turning NNPC into a family business? That is news to me and to other former and current staff of NNPC. Please could you expantiate on the family whose business NNPC has become, apart from the Nigerian family? I am always saddened by the fact that some Nigerians will never change their sad behaviour. It appears that the gene for treachery, innuendo and envy is buried deep in the DNA of some Nigerians of a particular ethnicity. As long as they are not in control of a Nigerian entity, they use all means, especially the media, to run down the operators, in the hope that their own man will take over, and then all will be well. It is the same mindset that led to the current mess at the Villa, because the usual suspects wanted in at all cost, even if the prize is a purely consolation one.

    • William Norris

      I predicted that Kachikwu would soon become a sacrificial lamb for CHANGE. It looks like Mr Kolawale has fired the first shot.

      I don’t understand why he accepted to serve under Buhari. I just don’t get it.

      • Intrepid

        You got it my brother. This guy Kachikwu never knew what he is in for. He never knew Buhari placed him on a hot seat. Try as he can to salvage lazy Nigeria’s only honey pot of survival, those who are not comfortably with his ideas, no matter how patriotic, will go hunting him down.

        They usual people have just started. I hope he doesn’t regret joining this team of unliked minds. Just the other day he was lamenting how he was losing one million dollars every year for reliqinshing his former post, to serve his country.

      • LagLon

        Kachikwu has resigned once already (when they tried not to make him minister and keep him as gmd)… thats why hes doing his job in relative peace and pushing through an agenda.. he has balls and will walk. kolawole is pissed oando/ forte/ poss sahara arent sharing the nnpc assets…

    • Nathan

      You said it all sire, Simon is a hypocrite!
      He, like most Nigerians are masters of coy, subtlety, subterfuge, deceit and political correctness.
      Their character is at best chaff and will be revealed sometime.
      Always playing things safe is never virtue.

  • amebo

    You are on your own with this write up. This same Buhari was a major participant in the government of Abacha. I don’t really understand what you’re trying to achieve with this article. You need an appointment ?

    • Baron Roy

      He does…the other invertebrates like him have been given appointments so why not him too?

      And once he has been given the appointment, I would like him to interview a Molue tout who didn’t write his O’Levels and appoint him as the Managing Editor of The Cable!!! A very honest Molue Conductor with a very ‘clean’ mind and Islamic disposition would definitely make The Cable to be as widely spread and as successful as The Time Magazine!!!

      Simon, over to you…this was the same template you packaged for Nigerians, wasn’t it?

      • LagLon

        Lol…

      • Kelly

        Just the truth Simon wont tell himself, but actually knows it in his inner mind.

  • Toby

    “NNPC is fast turning into a family business ”
    Kachikwu’s or Buhari’s family? Don’t be a coward Simon. Be specific and be a man.

    • Jon West

      Simon is a man of straw, a man without character. The most dangerous kind of man, but very representative of some type of Nigerian.

    • Baron Roy

      He’s a coward…he was born that way…begrudge him not…

    • Tony Oshea

      This Simon is beyond Cowardly.He is envious as if it is easy to obtain a PHD from Harvard in Law and be iconic in the petroleum industry.He should study hard to get a masters in journalism instead of exhibiting envy spiced with tribalism on Thisday.

  • UOU

    The coward said that Kachikwu is turning nnpc into family business, he knew what he is saying, he is the one to start it just like the old fool in vanguard sobawole started the assault against Stella oduah, the one in saharareporters started against Okonjo Iweala, they awarded pass marks, to former agric minister, telecom ministers lady and all their tribes men, yet in the same govt they want us to believe is a disaster. This people are actually the problem of nigeria, sanusi rightly said it, Kachikwu, you were warned but it wil serve you right to serve them and get disgraced, they will paint you with fresh shit(Nshi ofuu)

  • Edon B.

    Simon! come on, stop this wickedness against Kachikwu. Please please, if you people don’t stop this your yoruba AGENDA against the owners of the oil producing area (South South / Niger Delta region+ Ibos), be rest assure that God who bless them with oil well, shall visit you people like He visited Egypt and FREED His people so that they may serve Him with what He bless them with. The hate/burden is fast be coming unbearable. Good night Nigeria.

  • Ameen Abdul

    Do some people take time to read and get the message being passed in a write-up before making comments? I am afraid, sentiments have blurred some commentators’ reasoning a great deal.

    Simon has simply expressed his feeling about PMB, who he holds in high esteem, not yet articulating strategies to take the country away from the current economic shamble to the promised land.
    I don’t think it is a crime that he (Simon) has high regard for and believe in PMB – everyone has right to what he chooses to believe or not to believe. Because one is not on the same page with you does not mean the person must be painted black.
    What i expect at forum like this are constructive criticism, and intelligent proffering of solutions to the nation’s problems – not these abuses. Come on, let’s stop these “igba d’ogoje, ero’waja” stuff

  • Ichele Aki

    A terrible and disheartening write up. But Simon kolawole has lived up to expectation. No need to dwell on the meaningless and ambivalent attempt to be politically correct over the great buhari error. The most disappointing part is the matter of “turning NNPC into family business”, it’s a shame that this day avails its pages to “sophisticated” tribalists like Simon to practice. I thought they now have the Vice President position. What level is remaining for the likes of Simon to descend to in paying obeisance to a certain group. A simple conflict between the Hausa and Yoruba in mile 12 is being painted in ridiculous hue. I ask ‘who is Simon kolawole afraid of’?

    • gohen

      He is afraid of nobody , but the truth !

    • Tony Oshea

      Very typical.It is sycophants like kola who brought Nigerians to this economic quagmire by portraying an economic illiterate,certificate-less,former Cattle rearer as an unblemished messiah and “change” Magician.The results are there for our assessment.How Nduka Obaigbena condoned sycophants like kola , who will use his platform to cast aspersion on Dr Kachikwu beats my imagination.Unfortunately I don’t think Nduka realises that one of those dragging his publication -Thisday-into disrepute,and desperately determined to kill it, so he can acquire the carcase is kola.His views are always a mirror of the mindset of APC or his warped allegiance to tribalism.That is not the standard of journalism and obaigbena who has featured for, l believe, New York Times or other international newspapers Know the standards that must be Maintained. In 1989 chief Abiola appointed an Igbo,Dr Onyema Ugochwkwu, MD of the defunct concord and there was a pletora of protest by Yoruba. By 1993 Champion newspapers appointed a Yoruba as its MD.In recent past The Sun Newspaper appointed a Yoruba as MD,who 5 now CPS to the president.No Yoruba publication would do that . In reciprocation Kola is using the platform of Thisday to cast aspersion on a Colleague/ brother of Nduka in publication ,even though the decision to unbundle NNPC emanated from the presidency.I believe Nduka has started the re organization of his publication towards professionalism in the right direction.

      • Ichele Aki

        Your perspective seems better than mine 👍👍👍

        • Tony Oshea

          Thanks lchele, Kudos to you too.

  • shakara123

    Simon, you say you’re worried about PMB’s economic philosophy. I put it you that PMB has no economic philosophy not to think less of articulating one.
    Anyways, this article only shows that in order to maintain some modicum of credibility with your readers, you setting the stage to abandon PMB/APC’s ship.
    Welcome to the wailing wailers. Please don’t forget to pick up your form for registration :)

  • Orlando

    I do not understand why Simon should make such a scathing remark about the Minister of State for Petroleum, Ibe Kachikwu. The accusation of turning NNPC into a family business is too weighty to make especially when it is coming from a ‘respected’ journalist and against a ‘respected’ industry regulator. Unfortunately, Simon is making this accusation probably not based on any informed opinion but on hearsay. I don’t expect Simon to base his print information on gossip that is not thoroughly researched. I also do not expect Dr Ibe Kachikwu to keep quiet about this allegation which I consider very strong. Simon is gradually showing his true colours.

  • Dayo Akom

    There is no need to be honest, let us continue the deception that Buhari is doing very well and refuse to admit that the economy is in limbo with any direction. After all there is already made excuse that PDP destroyed the country for 16 years and see where that will take us all.

    I know that the problem of this nation is majorly self deceit and until we are ready to say the truth problem will continue.

  • Tea

    Simon, simon , Simon hmmm. I hope u can hear me because at the rate u are going you may end up like a fly that follows the corpse to the grave – may that not be your portion.
    After your inability to make a case for your idol – GMB to be given more time u cannt say anything about his despotic rule so far. have u failed to see that our freedom is been trampled upon not just students, accused persons but even now the Ekiti state assembly just to get at Gov. Fayose. ur hero dictator bokohari is beginning to exhibit his true clolours and you still don’t have the courage to say it as it is.
    Finally on the NNPC n Kachukwu am ashamed of ur cheap comments – family business indeed. That is too cheap and really shows the stuff you made off.

  • BZ

    This is probably the most unprofessional I have ever seen Simon. It makes one wonder, ‘what is really going on here?!’. I have no particular affinity for the Honourable Minister of State, but to ‘go after’ such a man (trying to do the best for the formerly “opaque” Oil & Gas Industry) with; half truths, outright lies, and to me an eagerness to cast aspersions really leaves a lot to be desired.
    For e.g., (And we all have access to information in the public domain!) the Directorates remain 4: Upstream, Downstream, Gas & Power, and Refineries. Where a ‘Senior’ journalist like you with expectations of Investigative Journalism got “7 Fat Units” from smirks with intellectual laziness. If it is; Finance and Accounts, Ventures, and Corporate Services you are further referring to, they fall under Group HQ (much like a Holding Company – I am sure you understand).
    And to compare this man with Diezani…..?!!! Haba….. Simon, this is a new low… even for you. (#phew, Nigeria!!!) An advise my dear brother: Be professional always and its not by force to ‘talk’ because you have back page on Sundays to fill up. (my One Kobo).

  • Ebaah Odibo

    “I’ve always told my friends no president can transform Nigeria in four years or even eight years”.
    Yes, and No Presidential Candidate should promise that either! If anybody did that, he can’t honestly be described as honest and man of integrity.

  • Edim Asekong

    Simon kolawole worried about Buhari ‘s economic philosophy amongst other things , but did not worry about his limited education. You see, those who burn their buttocks on fire will for ever sit on their blisters. Period. I fear for Simon, since he did not make out time to worry about what his many worries will ultimately portend for the people of Nigeria with this fellow as President.

  • NIBC

    Talk of passionate about the country, do you think Buhari can beat GEJ to that, if passion and honest intentions are all it takes to get Nigeria going, we will be Utopian by now. GEJ was one of the most sincere and honest president Nigeria ever had, even yardua wasn’t bad, so please don’t tell me about passion. I have said time and again, agreed GEj is clueless, but PMB is not an upgrade. It takes capacity to lead and please, PMB doesn’t have that. It difficult situations that bring the best out of the great leaders the world have seen, but only because they have something within to dig deep into. PMB’s complain of the situation is the first indication that he can never belong to those class of men, whom the world wasn’t worthy of them , considering the way the led their generation. Waiting for 2019

  • “Korede

    Simon, you have made a alot of sense “apology to Ben Murray Bruce”.

    We know them and we only need to ignore them. Hatred was planted in them from birth and they cannot change. Ignore those comments as usual. They are everything but literate. Or should we say educated illetrate they are.

  • domnze

    Nobody, should expect anyone, even a magician to solve all Nigeria’s problems in four years let alone ten months. The problem is are we heading toward solving even the least of the problems? Does the leadership of the country have the capacity to tackle the problems. As you said good intentions or slogans don’t don’t solve problems. It is the know-how that does. Can you give what you don’t have?

  • caltu

    Even though, I do not agree with our elites that this administration has no economic direction or strategy as the will call it, I make bold to say that sometimes having no clear direction is a strategy on its own and better than rushing into a wrong direction.
    Pray what was the last administrations economic direction? Looting? And where did it land us. Nigerians want change, but are not willing to make sacrifices for the change to materialize.
    Buhari refused to officially devalue Naira and to most of them that disagree with him, that shows he is economically directionless. What could be far from the truth. I am only disappointed that those who should know are buckling under pressure to sing the same refrain with those who have kept us underdeveloped.

  • Trapperjaw

    Very balanced and well written article. Im amazed at the depth and objectivity of the writers analysis. One of my biggest worries is always that there isn’t an overarching roadmap for development which becomes enshrined in the constitution and a sense of continuity of development regardless of the political party in power. For those who are complaining that the Author is a supporter of PMB can you not see that he offers CONSTRUCTIVE CRITICISM? Besides who else would you have voted in? Who else do you suppose would have been as capable of trying to transform the image of Nigeria at a time the country most needed it in comparison to PMB? The authors point about “connecting the dots” and coherence with respect to planning and development is spot on. “Everyone just seems to be doing their own thing”. The Author gives credit where credit is due, Criticism where its due and Advise where due. Above all it is the reason and clarity of vision of expression that is worth commending. This man is not a Buhari fan(atic), but a seasoned observer of politics and social progression in Nigeria. The article isn’t even really about Buhari, but about what Buhari ought to do to help make Nigeria progress long-term. That is what this Author shares with the President. Whether PMB is succeeding in his efforts, is an entirely different debate.

  • vincentumenyiora

    [But I worry about Buhari’s speed and economic philosophy. I admit that he met enormous challenges on ground. Only a magician would have killed all the cockroaches, mosquitoes and rats within 10 months. The PDP brigade, still hurting from their humiliation in the general election, are trying to force the issue, trying to brand Buhari as a failure already — yet their party had 16 whole years to address power shortage, dependence on fuel imports, infrastructural decay, comatose healthcare and stunted education. They wasted a golden opportunity. They are certainly not in a good position to describe Buhari as a failure before his first anniversary in office.

    Nevertheless, I am very disturbed that Buhari does not yet have an economic direction. Neither is there an anchor. There is no clarity. What we are getting are mixed messages, bits and pieces here and there. I am hearing sweet statements and poetic promises, a lot of rhymes and alliterations, from APC leaders and ministers. There is no proper articulation so that we can have an idea of where we are headed. There are so many dots that are not connecting. I have this impression everybody is just doing their own thing without any overarching strategy to connect these dots. I can’t see coherence. I can’t see a roadmap. I can’t see what to hold on to.]
    Look as journalist or Editors in chief, these two – Aribisala and Simon immediately come to mind that is if they are in their prime and they want to express the theme of their writing objectively, folks! Tell the truth however the length of their articles are, once you start to read them there is the feeling/ tendency you want to get to the end – I don’t know if you are so effected? To this regard as always, I cannot fault this features; the important fact is that he has said it all but we wait to see whether what he said has been accepted and they are going to take regard of them all! To add to this from my stand point I’ll urge him – the President to ask his aides to let him see my notes sent to him on the 4th June 2015 for there is a lot on it to help his administration!
    My reason for this statement is that I have not received a an acknowledgement to it so knowing that his attention may well be drawn to this article, I felt the opportunity should be taken as a reminder since we are all working for the same purpose – encouraging/ praying for growth or advancement for Nigeria, folks! I’ll say please Mr. Simon keep it – your deportment up!

  • vincentumenyiora

    I see John West’s comment occurring three time on this format and I cannot see mine – am wondering why, folks! Problem with Nigeria even though it has something informative and can help you people in the disgusting circumstances! Post the comment and let somebody challenge it or go to the Court as the CJN suggests regarding his decision about the ‘Frivolous Bill!’ Post my comments and let it run for a while because it is meant to help you people start thinking correctly and rationally about the problems in Nigeria! I mean if I can produce the kind of solutions all compatible I can see you’re wondering if they can all be true – take it from me they are all true facts and if in doubts all you need do is to check the dates and the names attached to them!

  • Zico

    When I hear words or phrases like “economic blueprint”, “economic team”, “policy direction”, etc, I have some reservations. We have had in the past what could be regarded as the best economic blueprints and economic team, especially when our oil was doing well. Where did they take us to? They brought the nation to her knees. So it is not about theories, blueprints or big names. The President and his team are working to take care of the mess they met. Like Mr. Kolawole pointed out, 10 months are not enough to solve the problems. Remember, the present Government met a badly battered economy, highly depleted funds and reserves, unpaid salaries at both State and Federal levels, among others. Patience, support and prayers from all and sundry are what the Government needs at these trying times. Nigeria will rise again.

  • vincentumenyiora

    John West’s – comments have (I don’t mean any ulterior motives here) featured four (4) times and I cannot see mine, why! You’re probably concerned about the dates and claims on it, which you’ll discover are correct; they are not frivolous claims as specified by the CJN! So here, you begin to discover how grave the problems in Nigeria are and why we are not likely going to get at the roots of it all in time! Even under your eyes, the truth is being told you cannot post them – Nawaao for Nigeria! Why not go by the proverbial, thus – “The truth shall vindicate the innocent when it is known/ exposed!” and perhaps as they see it, because it may not have (has never) been shown to them – the ‘truths’ were oblivious to their knowledge, we may begin to instil the anticipated change in their minds also! Thank you, and I won’t bother if this fails to appear on this column after this remonstration!

  • John

    Finally you are doing the needful Simon: reminding the present administration the economic mess this country is presently in, and their(the government) obvious lack of a clear idea or plan to recover from this mess. They are clearly overwhelmed, and instead of crying out for help to those Nigerians who have great ideas and are willing to share them, the present administration have embarked on propaganda; blaming the past administration on a daily bases for creating the mess.
    The said ‘mess’ the past government created is what voted them into office in the first place. I wish they could borrow from the words of Fidelity bank’s advert, “we are not here to complain that things have broken, we are here to fix them.”
    May be constant reminders from great writers like you will finally wake them up from their slumber.

  • Chimdindu Eben Osuagwu

    Folks, the best way to prove that Simon is ‘clueless’ is to ‘articulate and provide the ‘clue’. To assert that what Simon wrote is ‘nonsense’ without supplying the ‘sense’ is proof of parading NEPA bill as certificate. Nigeria was suffering from sustained ‘economic’ ‘spiritual’ and moral hemorrhaging – from 1979 – 1984, aggravated by ‘renting and piracy’ focused military rule from 1986-1999, and continued by civilian relay team members of the same military cabal planted as PDP rule from 1999. In principle, there was never 16 years unbroken PDP democratic rule in the entire South-east and South-south. The military cabal merely imposed their odious ‘runners’ as rigged in civilian Governors to rule states in this region. My career was among the first victim of these ‘northern Generals imposed ‘South-east Governor’ as his undue and violent interference (using created violent and dreaded Bakassi) forced the looting and collapse of the brewery where I worked. If the only achievement President Buhari made in 10 months is put Nigeria’s decades of ‘socio-economic hemorrhage’ in reverse gear – that is a unique and significant achievement. PMB is vision for Nigeria is not identical with that of the ruling party – made up really of PDP-in-APC, + ACN-in-APC + CPC-in-APC + ANPP-in-APC ‘power Distributors’, the analogue of national Cement, Beer, Rice and Toyota distributors. So it is wishful thinking that a ‘change slogan’ by a mutated version of PDP party will create the ‘change momentum’ Buhari envisioned. The probable way President Buhari can endow his vision of Nigeria is to declare ‘a state or emergency’ on ‘corruption and budget abuse’ – that way, one can challenge his excuses of slow court processes, etc. Which ‘saint anti-corruption’ agency, or judicial or ‘security apparatus’ is available for use to cause accelerated cleansing of Nigeria – a preconding fo socio-economic ‘escape from Sorbibo’? An Ibo proverb says that ‘he or she whose relatives dances out-of-expected-steps scratches his or her eyelids’, and one would expect that with all the exposures on guaguantian arms and oil deal heists -sympathisers of the party at the centre at the time should be thoroughly disappointed with trends preceding Buhari’s ascension to office. That some PDP party organs are not shamed by such disclosures is a pointer that indeed Nigeria’s problems needs Rawlings and not PMB. There has been no single President, or Governor since 1999 that did not abuse office – from AD, ANPP, PDP, CNC or whatever party. The gleaming Buckingham Palaces these Governors built for themselves to everybody’s witness is inalienable evidence of this assertion. Muhammadu Buhari is the only past ruler to not indulge in such vainglory. The failure of governance in Nigeria is not a party issue – it is serially failing leadership – whose passion for accumulating power and wealth in office is at all times inversely proportional to the compassionate use. This a trend that Buhari signifies the counterfactual. PMB’s Achilles heels remains his belief that change can happen under him – under a vision and mission pursued intensely by APC – a contaminated mutation of PDP. Sorry, I carry APC card on paper- certainly not in spirit.

  • Ahilabegbe

    Lets call a spade, spade and not an agricultural implement. Buhari and APC lacks the capacity to rule Nigeria. God help us this four years.