President Jonathan yesterday admitted that he did not speak personally with the Moroccan king as claimed by the Nigerian Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The Ministry had claimed one week ago that the Nigerian president spoke on telephone with his Moroccan counterpart. The claim was immediately denied by the Moroccan Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Nigeria retorted with an affirmation of her claim. The ensuing diplomatic row resulted in Morocco recalling its ambassador to Nigeria.
Like many other patriotic individuals and groups in the country, the Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC) is seriously embarrassed by this avoidable diplomatic conundrum into which the Federal Government (FG) has driven Nigeria. It reflected our infantile diplomacy, administrative ineptitude and irreversible leadership failure.
The Jonathan-led administration has been characterized by a litany of lies and broken promises. It only recently became too clever by half when its local propensity to mislead gullible Nigerians assumed an international dimension. The manufacturers in FG’s factory of lies simply overreached themselves by taking on foreign countries.
Morocco is not alone in rebuffing Nigeria in recent times. American security officials allegedly clashed with their Nigerian counterparts two days ago because the Americans were angry that Nigeria lied by claiming that America supported the postponement of elections.
It is rather unfortunate that President Jonathan is yet to appreciate the full implication of his admission that he actually did not have a telephone conversation with the Moroccan king. It means that Nigeria lied and if Nigeria lied it means our president lied. This is what Mr. President underestimated.
The underestimation syndrome has eaten deep into Mr. President’s character. Afterall he shocked Nigerians by saying that stealing was not corruption. He underestimated the kidnapping of the Chibok girls and for weeks he did not believe any girl was abducted. The girls are yet to be found to date. He also underestimated the Boko Haram insurgency. He reportedly admitted this much. It cost us thousands of lives and untold suffering. Yet Mr. President said the Moroccan saga in which his government has been caught lying was “less important”. He considered drawing the opposition into the gay debate as more important. It is nauseating.
Yet the Moroccan affair is yet to take its full toll. Nigerians in the diaspora may soon start facing the music. It has happened before. They may be subjected to contempt and dehumanization. Nobody is going to trust citizens of a country whose government takes pleasure in telling lies to both its citizens and the international community.
In the meantime President Jonathan owes us an explanation. The Presidency always reacts with the speed of light to statements made by opposition parties, why did it take him a full week to refute the allegation? Will he say he was in total darkness regarding the raging controversy between the Nigerian Foreign ministry and its Moroccan counterpart? Was he also unaware of the recall of the Moroccan ambassador?
We urge FG to urgently discard its garb of deceit. The international community will address Nigeria the way the country is dressed. Nigerians deserve transparency. We are a people rich in the culture of integrity. This government is an embarrassment and President Jonathan has become both a political and moral liability on Nigeria.
MURIC appeals to Nigerians at home and abroad to bring back the nation’s glory by dint of hardwork, honesty and high moral standard. We urge the international community not to judge Nigerian citizens by their leader’s yardstick but by individual merit.
Professor Ishaq Akintola,
Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC)
Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC),
E-mail: [email protected]
Yahoo Group: groups.yahoo.com/group/