The Prolix And The Garbage In Buhari-Bashing, By Ikechukwu Mbachu
This is not about Buhari’s presidential aspiration, It has gone beyond the level of thwarting his political ambitions. This is now about character assassination. I know Buhari is not perfect, but then who is? I don’t think he deserves all these invective some people are pouring on him. I see the new trend on Nigerian social media is “Buhari bashing”.
I see people whose amniotic fluid is still dripping from their heads insulting someone who is old enough to be their grandfather, someone they know nothing about.The only thing they know about him is from hearsay. They have accused Buhari of virtually every known crime in the world, except perhaps been a rapist. I look at Nigerians and I am amazed at how forgetful they are, how well they twist facts, how adept they are at running people down.
Buhari have been accused of a myriad of crimes which makes him ineligible for the post of the president. I will try my least to counter some of these fatuous accusations in the shortest and simplest form I can.
1. He was a “coupist” What is wrong with removing a government that was riddled with corruption, a government that was rudderless, a government that was rigged into power, a government that extolled indiscipline, calling Shagari’s government a democratic government is simply a travesty, at best Shagari’s government was an “embezzlelocracy” not a democracy. Shagari’s government deserved to be booted out and that was exactly what Buhari and Idiagbon did. By the way, the same Nigerians forget they are the ones who voted Obasanjo, David mark and Jonah Jang into power. Yet these people are also former “coupists”
2. He is a dictator. Well, show me a revolutionary who was not a dictator. The People who accuse Buhari of been a dictator know nothing about revolutions. Fidel Castro was accused of the same thing, Thomas Sankara was accused of the same, and Jerry Rawlings was also accused. Revolution involves cleaning the Augean stable, and to do that, you don’t pander to people feelings, mollycoddle or pamper them. That comes after you have fixed the problem. The biggest problem in Nigeria is indiscipline and corruption and this was the cancer Buhari sought to remove.
3. He is corrupt like the rest of the politicians. Well show me his fat account, show me his private jet, and show me his mansion in Abuja, in Dubai, New York. I mean as a former governor, minister, chairman of PTF and head of state, he could afford all these, after all, even governors today are buying jets like taxis and buying up the whole of Dubai. Let’s even forget about the luxurious life of the former heads of state. Show me Buhari’s multimillion dollar share in fortune 500 companies. Kindly show me where he is hiding all his ill-gotten wealth. We should candidly ask ourselves how many of us would hold all the positions and still manage to be as modest as Buhari.
4. He is a religious bigot. oh oh oh!! Who amongst you reading is not a religious bigot?? 95% of Nigerians are religious. Unlike some Nigerians, Buhari is not a pretender. He is true to his religion. If Buhari does with Islam what GEJ is doing with Christianity, Nigerians will stone him to death, Buhari has not done a third of what GEJ is doing with Christianity with his Islam. They say he is intolerant; will any intolerant and bigoted northern Muslim make a pastor his running mate? Show me a politician who chose a pastor of repute as a running mate other than Buhari. The same man they accuse of been an Islamist was the same man who put an end to the Maitatsine Islamic cult. The same person who rounded up members of the cult and put an end to the matter.
5. He supports Boko Haram. I am still yet to see the evidence that he supports Boko Haram.Calling for amnesty for Boko Haram is not the same thing as supporting Boko Haram. Even Mr President set up a committee on amnesty. So why the hoopla? Show me one proof linking Buhari to Boko Haram; just one. Meanwhile, let’s not forget that the same Mr President said he has members of Boko Haram in his government, directly implicating himself. All the top shots that have been implicated as sponsors of Boko Haram are all members of PDP, the party of Mr President.
6. On the Ombatse cult issue and double standard. Buhari never condemned the cult or their religion; he clearly stated they had a right to worship whatever they want. I don’t know what else people want him to say: Should he support the killing of members of Nigerian security forces? He simply condemned the killings, just like he did with the killings of Boko Haram.
7. He jailed easterners and westerners. Bollocks!! The same person who brazenly organized some Israelis to capture and crate a northerner Umaru Dikko for onward journey to Nigeria for justice to take its course. Show me anything as remotely as determined and punitive as that. He deserves eternal kudos for this singular act.
8. He is too old. The answer to this is simple, a good wine gets better with age. Buhari won’t be the oldest person to contest for elections. Age have nothing to do with good leadership. Nigerians have elected some young brats like James Ibori, lucky Igbinedion, etc., who ended as big rogues. Integrity has nothing to do with age. It is innate.
9. His role in civil war. If we want to crucify Buhari for his roles in the civil war, we should start with the Gowons, the Awolowos, the Theophilus Danjumas, the Obasanjos, the Adekunles aka black scorpion etc. This argument does not hold water at all.
10. He is a tribal bigot, Well so is GEJ and the other politicians. Show me a Nigerian politician that does not whip up ethnic sentiments when he feels cornered.
11. He threatened hell if election was rigged. What is bad in that statement? Only those who have the intentions to rig election will be gripped by fear when such statements are made, after all OBJ once said election was “do or die” and no one scolded him.
12. He contested and failed three times. And so? When did failure become a crime? He should be praised for his tenacity and belief in democracy. Some people would have sold out a long time ago, sided with the oppressors and made fortune, not so with Buhari.
13. He is a terrorist. But no member of Boko Haram has come out in the open to say Buhari supports or sponsors them: On the other hand, Henry Okah openly accused the Mr president of terrorist acts and the allegation was swept under carpet.
14. He supported Abacha. What is wrong with that? Is he the only one that supported Abacha? Many people supported Abacha too. I don’t see anyone crucifying them. Actually so many Igbos and Yorubas also supported Abacha. So kini big deal?
15. He hates Igbos. The same person who hates Igbos also gave Igbo the vice presidency slot twice? I agree PDP people loves Igbos, but what I don’t know is what exactly PDP government has benefited Ndi Igbo since the inception of this democracy other the death traps they call roads.
16. His tenure in PTF didn’t benefit southerners. Oh yeah! How much was the total PTF budget, compare it with what just one agency, NDDC has got and then compare the number of projects completed by PTF and those by NDDC.
17. He wants to Islamize Nigeria. This is the most laughable and ludicrous of all, How it is possible for anyone to believe such a puerile idea baffles me to no end.
You people insulting Buhari have nothing on the man! You are simply giving a dog a bad name to hang it. At least I am happy for one thing… everyone vouches for his integrity. This at least shows he stood for something, show me any other politician in Nigeria that people openly and unanimously vouch for his integrity. I rest my case for now. Still TeamBuhari!!!
Ikechukwu Mbachu writes from the Brandenburg Technical University, Germany.