My Tears And Fears For Nigeria Are Over, By Terfa Naswem

By Terfa Naswem

Nigeria was getting closer to its boiling point and it became imperative for Nigerians to understand that if they don’t do anything to reduce the heat, Nigeria will evaporate meaning it will fall apart. And Nigerians sent a resounding message through their votes that the time for CHANGE has come. Evaporation may occur when the partial pressure of vapour of a substance is less than the equilibrium vapour pressure. In this context, the substance here is “Nigeria” and “the partial pressure of vapour” is the “Positive impact on Nigeria” while “equilibrium vapour pressure” is Negative impact on Nigeria”.

With the election of Maj. General Muhammadu Buhari (Retd) as the next president of Nigeria, my fears and tears for Nigeria are now over because I have faith in the ability of Buhari to reposition Nigeria and make it a better place for all. Even without being sworn in yet, I have noticed a lot of things trying to get better.

When President Umaru Musa Yar’Adua died on 5 May 2010, I mourned him for a very long time because I knew that so many things were going to go wrong in Nigeria.

Yar’Adua’s death shook me tremendously because of his leadership prowess. In spite of the fact that some vampires, including those within his own family, turned him into a mere inert resource for their diabolical schemes, he was very conscious that Nigeria belongs to all Nigerians not only his family or friends.

Late President Yar’Adua had very good intention for Nigeria. He believed in the Rule of Law and allowed the legislature and the Judiciary to operate without external interference. He declared his assets. He openly admitted that the 2007 general elections were not free and fair and was working toward reforming our electoral system. He brought forth his 7-point Agenda to reposition Nigeria and was seriously working toward actualizing them. His 7-point Agenda: 1. Power and Energy 2. Food Security and Agriculture 3. Wealth Creation and Employment 4. Mass Transportation 5. Land Reform 6. Security 7. Qualitative and Functional Education.

US President Barack Obama offered condolences, stating: “He was committed to creating lasting peace and prosperity within Nigeria’s own borders, and continuing that work will be an important part of honoring his legacy”. But unfortunately Nigeria cannot see such commitment today.

When President Goodluck Ebele Azikiwe Jonathan took the mantle of leadership after President Yar’Adua’s death, I was extremely pessimistic about his ability to effectively follow Yar’Adua’s steps and govern Nigeria in the light of unity and development.

When series of unpleasant events unfolded during Jonathan government, most of my friends and acquaintances understood why I seriously mourned Yar’Adua. Late President Yar’Adua had a vision for Nigeria and if God had allowed him to complete his plan for Nigeria, Nigeria would be a country to be extremely proud of it.  He saw all the things that are happening now coming and he organised his government in such a way that would tackle every threat effectively and fight corruption and work for the common good.

The failure of Jonathan to follow late president Yar’Adua’s footsteps or even do better than his predecessor made me asked three basic questions:

  1. Does Jonathan administration lack the resources to tackle insecurity, corruption and the enormous economic and other challenges hitting Nigeria?
  2. Does Jonathan administration place personal, political and other interests above the interest of Nigerians?
  3. Would President Jonathan re-election make Nigeria better or worse than it is right now?

I never wanted to comment on Jonathan’s administration or make comparisons but I feared for Nigeria because Nigeria was sinking and if the wind of CHANGE had not blown to salvage the situation, things would have got worse than they are now.

Woodrow Wilson and Franklin Roosevelt once said:

“The government, which was designed for the people, has got into the hands of the bosses and their employers, the special interests. An invisible empire has been set up above the forms of democracy”.-Woodrow Wilson


“Let us never forget that government is ourselves and not an alien power over us. The ultimate rulers of our democracy are not a President and senators and congressmen and government officials, but the voters of this country”.-Franklin D. Roosevelt

If Nigeria must succeed as a nation, the interest of the governed must supersede any other interest.

I call on every Nigerian to continue to pray for Nigeria and ask God to give Buhari the strength and wisdom to govern Nigeria through the right path by truly being a servant to the governed and not a King because the strength of a king is in his army.