By Benjamin Obiajulu Aduba
When Mr. Buhari was elected president in 2015, it took him six months to announce his choice of members of his cabinet. That remains the record to be exceeded. We are now in the second month since PMB was inaugurated as the president of Nigeria and nobody has a clue on who will help PMB manage Nigerian affairs. In 2015 some people speculated that after trying and failing in three attempts that Mr. Buhari did not expect to win and so was not prepared to immediately announce his choice of members of his cabinet. That was 2015 now is 2019.
Do we still have that excuse?
When PMB’s appointments was finally made in 2015, the only surprise was how much he relied on his friends from primary school and how little faith he had on other Nigerians. This time around he has had four years to study Nigerians from all the four winds and has had a chance to work with them. So what is the problem?
I speculate that the problem now is similar to that of 2015. PMB has been elected each time by a whopping support from North and West of Nigeria and complete rejection by the East and SS. His delay in announcing his cabinet can be traced to this challenge: how much punishment can he or should he met out to the “rejectionists” and much will he/could he reward his true and loyal supporters? It is not an easy call to make.
The other challenge is what direction he should go in his second term: continue with corruption fight; continue with strengthening the military; continue with fighting Boko Haram; all these fights had not yielded any good results. Or should he change course and if so in which direction? This too is not an easy call to make.
The fact that he is having this trouble demonstrates lack of preparation to govern. An incumbent president has had enough time to see what he would do with extra time. Where has he had successes and ought to continue and which new areas to pay his attention anew. Who are the best people he has encountered and who will help him? If PMB has been paying attention these will be easy questions to answer. Can we assume that he has not been paying attention to his ways of governing or his personnel?
Of course another probable explanation of his inability to hit the ground running could be that PMB is sicker that he lets out. Sick old men have a tougher time focusing, more difficulty remembering things, like faces and names, and are usually less trusting. Could this be PMB’s problems?
Does PMB’s APC Party which is now very fractious have some things to do with his delayed appointments? There are the Oshimhole’s, the Tinubu’s and the restive governors and ex-governors who want in, could it be that they are lobbying so hard? But a focused leader should have expected this all along and made provisions on how to deal with these kinds of pressure.
Or is PMB just a slow thinker and a slower actor?
The senate is fully constituted and in session. And ready to confirm or reject PMB’s appointments. The senate is constituted to PMB’s liking with little chance of rejecting any appointments. The only thing missing is the list of PMB’s appointments. We hope that the six months record of 2015 is broken this second time around.
Oh! just one other possible explanation. Could it be that PMB is afraid that the election tribunal might find in favor of Mr. Atiku Mohammed who is challenging Buhari’s election and so is waiting for the tribunal to render its decision?
It could well be.
Aduba sent in this piece from Boston, Massachusetts, United States.