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July 31, 2016

BUHARI : A REPENTANT TYRANT; A TRUE DEMOCRAT

Muhammadu Buhari, Nigeria's fifth democratically elected president is today more than qualified to be regarded as a repentant tyrant; a true democrat. Born on Dec 17, 1942,at Daura, in the present day state of Katsina, Northern Nigeria. A career military officer who rose to become Nigeria's head of state in 1983 after ousting a democratically elected government under the leadership of Alhaji Shehu Usman Shagari.

While he was the head of state, both the old and young can attest to his sternness and austere outlook on life and ruthlessness in matters of governance. His government was notorious for clamping politicians into jail without trial. Flogging of erring members of public and other sundry excesses were a common sight. Sooner than later his government became so unpopular for its sweeping disciplinary onslaught and was giving a hiding in a palace coup led by General Ibrahim Badamosi Babangida in 1985.

 Ever since, he has kept a distance from politics. There is, however, enough proof that he commands a large followers especially in the core north for his integrity, discipline, religious piety, Statesmanship and good track record as a public officer. But in a surprise reappearance on the big stage was appointed the chair of Petroleum Trust Fund ( PTF) under the government oflate head of state General Sani Abacha.

 And he shone like a five ruby public administrator not tempted by the dizzying volume of financial resources at his disposal. 

 He bathed clean and the sponge he properly drained.

 It is on record that at the threshold of this democratic dispensation in 1999, the incoming administration of Chief Aremi Olusegun Obasanjo, true to one of his campaign promises, scrapped the PTF. But nothing incriminating was found against him when the books were opened eventually. This was corroborated during a campaign trip to Abeokuta in the run up to the presidential election of last year by his host former president Olusegun Obasanjo.

 When finally he decided to foray into politics proper in 2003 as the presidential flag bearer of the All Nigerian People's Party (ANPP), it wasn't a surprise at all to many political watchers.In fact, it was so long expected because he belong to the golden generation of military officers Nigeria ever had. Though he lost repeatedly three times, he never gave up on his strong desire to help correct many of the anomalies within the Nigeria political station.

 In the run up to the last general election like in the three before it,  there were deliberate, calculated and sustained attempt by the shrew eyed spin doctors in the opposition camp to straight jacketed him into a Sabre faced Satan never to dine with even with a long spoon.

 He was alleged to have threatened fire and brimstone if the elections were rigged. In short, that blood will flow.

 To this effect, sustain campaign was sponsored on national radio and television stations to malign his image in the minds of members of the society. But in the end he triumphed on his fourth attempt thanks to a historic marriage of pockets of opposition parties across board.

 Now seated on the throne, I have been looking for string of actions that could effectively connect him to the dark narratives of the past and I have simply found none. 

 He has conducted himself in the most capable, noble and grandeur manners befitting his exalted office. He has tailored his activities both in official capacity and out of it to suite the dictates of the grand norm which is the Nigeria constitution of 1999 as amended.

 Every alleged infraction against the Nigerian state, investigated, by officials in the previous administration are being subjected to the rigor of judicial process in the properly constituted courts of law.

A case in point is the two billion dollars earmark to fight insurgency in the north east but was diverted or misppropriated if you prefer. 

There are no executive orders to punish anybody until found guilty. 
His every appearances stately; utterances terse, measured and democratic. No bluffly attempt is ever made to show off or deploy the enormous powers at his disposal as bestow on him by the Nigeria constitution. So far, he has said and done nothing to deliberately heat up the polity.

 He would rather allow judicial process take its long ponderous due course than try to abrogate it with money and other such trappings of power as abundantly witnessed especially during Obasanjo’s era.

 Even from what is happening in the National Assembly, I can bet my life that if it were in Obasanjo's time those principal officers of both national assembly would have been removed somehow even if it require a whole truckload of cash in Ghana-must-go sacks. , 

 But president Buhari true to his nature will never bribe anybody or groups to have his way when appointed or elected public officials are allege to have acted in breach of the constitution which they sworn to uphold how much more in matters of governance. 

 As such he occupies such high moral station, thoroughgoing, executive and can not be rivaled by any former heads of state living or dead.

 While many in his government are regrettably still living in the past aggressively seeking immunity to prying eyes of various anti-corruption agencies, our able president is already living in the future having successfully slipped off the toga of a tyrant.. 

 What more can we demand from a man who has been written off long before arriving..The facts of the matter speak for itself and I think he deserves to be reverently addressed as a true democrat by all and sundry. He has simply surpassed our collective expectations. 

 Even those who strongly hold the position that he would run rough shod on people's rights and privileges have been left perplexed by his individual, executive and presidential best practices.

 Unlike others, he seems to know the constitution and will never act in breach of it or any part thereof.









July 29, 2016

POETRY: IPEERE

Out of the mist of distant past, 
And the splash of rust and dust 
Of a sleepy town   stand out a youthful cheerleader
Whose entry and re-entry dazzle in starry sparkles,
Crush on by harlequin legions in skirts
Torn to shreds   Mired in the mud
With scratched eyes   dripping in their own blood
Day by day in the crowded streets, 
And narrow paths to the grandfather distant farms
And the song on their luscious lips
Cooed in heated loft abandon 
Was a charming fixating:
If this can’t be one’s husband,
Better still a paramour! 
In the brief bemuse world 
Of my presence there:
While for Agrarian, Erijiyan, famously stands out;
So does, Ipeere, for his innumerable lays of girls.   

July 06, 2016

MEDICAL PROFESSION AND PROFESSIONALS: THE GOOD, THE BAD, THE UGLY

From time immemorial, healthcare officers are known to command a lot of respect. This, from all indications, does not suggest itself to be a misplaced attitude from people if one considers the essential nature of services they render to humanity daily.

It would also not be an exaggeration to say many consider them to be next line to God purely out of importance people attached to the profession.

This, they’ve however, put in its proper perspectives themselves with the catch phrase: ‘We care; God heals.’

As far as the good side of the profession goes, it is on record that practitioners past and present have made giant strides comparable only to scaling the Everest. They’ve made discoveries and breakthroughs which have helped in reducing or eradicating grisly incidences of diseases, deaths and pains accompanying such.   

A case in point is the recent Ebola pandemic that ravaged the West African sub-region.

But like everything that is human driven, it is definitely not without its flip sides.

Though there is a truckload of allegations being level against medical professionals, it would suffice here to mention a few.

Both in times past and present, we’ve seen situations whereby medical officers administer injection where prescription drugs would’ve been a better option thereby reducing the patients to complete medical wrecks.

Similarly, we’ve also read and heard bizarre stories of operation theater blunders in which surgical instruments were said to have been forgotten in the bellies of unfortunate in-patients.

This is one grievous act of professional neglect which has attracted legal tussles and heavy sanctions from appropriate regulatory authorities in countries where recorded.   

Reading from an online news channel recently, RT to be precise, I wasn’t quite surprised medical errors was listed as number three killer of people in United State of all countries.

But if this could occur in a country widely acclaimed as the bastion of scientific and professional standards, I wonder what hope there is for third world countries which Nigeria belongs. More so because reliable statistics and data in the field of discuss are as faint as non-existent which makes it somewhat preposterous to place her medical sub-sector in similar morbidity rating.

From shared experiences, nevertheless, I will insist that Nigeria’s healthcare delivery system is as awash with impersonating charlatans, inter-disciplinary encroachments just as it boast impressive array of specialists of international repute.

While those in the former category are doing their worst, the later are doing their best to salvage it.

This is evident in our general hospitals which on regular basis have to deal with almost hopeless medical conditions referred from many ill-equipped inner-city private hospitals and their incompetent staffs.

As such the medical staffs in these facilities are always under tremendous pressure to deliver.

“A case of one monstrous slave being the reason we rile other diligent ones.”

Sometime it’s like the system is completely out of control like anything and everything Nigerian. Because, these days, everywhere you turn in cities nationwide, it is not out of place to see skimpily dressed young girls purportedly apprenticed to some nameless neighbourhood medical facilities.

And sooner than you think, they’re graduated as auxiliary nurses and the likes. A people in my candid estimations not fit to be worthy emissaries of this noble profession on the ground of insufficient training and industrial work experience.

Yet, they’re seen brazenly shuttling from house to house administering treatments on the sick, and  taking delivery of newborns in some dinghy rooms unfit for human habitation much more serving as medical out posts. From what I’ve seen of them at close up, they’re largely not helping the system but destroying it.

In fact, I call them ‘merchants of death’ on the loose.

As if these anomalies are not enough, there are other diabolical dimensions to the whole scenario namely that some of our hospitals have infamously become baby factories as widely reported by various media outlets in recent years.

There is also another which has not been well reported in the media but has been there for a very long time now. 

And it involves sharp practices which occur around the labour room.

I remembered that my father when he was alive used to warn about how things could go awry for a newborn right from the point of birth if certain things are taking for granted by parents. And he talked particularly of the ‘placenta’ and how it must be handled. Because to him, desperate medical officials contracted to ritualists can manipulate things in favour of their paymasters.              

How?

Sometimes they offer to help dispose-off it which they may never do. Instead, all they do is pass it on to these unscrupulous elements. Secondly, even if parents insist they want to have it they can still be out smarted by cleverly substituting it with raw meat. Since most parents don’t think it is hygienically ideal to double-check if what they are given to them is actually the real thing.

This he believed will negatively impact on the baby’s destiny when he or she becomes adult.

Perhaps this is one of the reasons we have a lot of never-do-well in our society. I might be wrong. After all there is a popular saying that there exists a thin-line between people who are victims of government obnoxious policies and witches and wizards. But the scenario I’ve just painted is real. Don’t forget Nigeria is a country where unthinkable happens. No deliberate attempt is made here to slight the country.

And parents can definitely guide against these evil manipulations.

I think more than ever before, it is by been more detailed in their observation concerning happenings in and around the labour room as the destiny of their new babies should be of paramount interest to them.

A word they say is enough for the wise.