By Haruna Mohammed Salisu
The above titled piece written by one Sani Tahir and published by Peoples Daily on 16th August 2015 on what he claimed Governor Abubakar’s style in reviving Bauchi economy is nothing but mere sycophancy and praise singing on a Governor who is still confused on his approach to Governance.
But before I substantially argue my points, let me quickly clarify that I am not a politician nor do I belong to any political party- but an indigene of Bauchi who is interested in offering constructive criticisms for the betterment of my state and its people.
Sani’s piece lacks substance to prove that the current Governor is doing anything to revive the economy of the state. All I could deduce from his piece are mere “intentions” and “indications” on what he called “the Governor’s readiness to revive the economy”.
I also tried to understand what Governor Abubakar put in place to “revive the economy” in Sani’s piece, but all I read was “glaring demonstration” on this and that.
My reasons for concluding that Sani’s piece was mere sycophancy and praise singing, probably from someone trying to impress his pay masters is because of the following reasons:
Firstly, Sani in his piece argued that “from all indication, the Governor has a lot of intentions to open up several job opportunities for the teaming youths ….” Having an intention to do something without putting some measures to actualized it is not an indication that the Governor is a reformer who is working to revive the state’s economy. As far as I know, the Governor has not put anything to actualize what Sani is claiming.
Secondly, the writer clandestinely argued that the Governor’s “personal distributions of a number of cars and motor-cycles to various youths that actively participated in the political campaign that brought him to power” is part of reviving the state’s economy. Really? Any rational thinker will understand that the Governor’s decision to distribute cars is nothing but rewarding political thugs who contributed in putting him into office. We don’t need any economic expert to tell us that his decision to distribute cars has nothing to do with reviving the economy, but a means of encouraging rascality and political thuggery in the state.
Sani Tahir needs to be told that this has nothing to do with economic revival, but rewarding political loyalists with tax payers’ money and a dubious means of encouraging youths to partake in political thuggery simply because there is a reward in doing that.
Thirdly, the writer’s claim that the Governor was “boosting agriculture with modern technologies” also needs to be substantiated. Sani should tell readers the technologies the Governor procured and where they are kept as well as the Local Government (s) that benefitted from the technologies. Or he should point out any farmers’ Association that was served with the new technologies in the state.
Sani should be reminded that the state government could not even procure fertilizer for its farmers . State officials were seen distributing the old stock left by former Governor, Isa Yuguda, and shamelessly, they were removing his pictures that were attached on the bags of the procured fertilizer, just to portray that it is the new Governor that procured the fertilizer for farmers in the state.
On the issue of solid minerals, how many youths were engaged in that ramification? What concrete measures can he point out were undertaken by the state government to revive the economy as he claimed.
Fourthly, most of our primary school teachers and their junior secondary school counterparts are still languishing in poverty because the state government still owes them salaries. To be fair to the incumbent Governor, most of the problems with regard to salaries in the state were bequeathed to him by the past administration, but he did not demonstrate any seriousness to bring to end teachers’ misfortunes in the state. People alleged that the Governor is still romanticizing with his predecessor for reasons only known to him.
Apart from teachers’ salaries, I can unequivocally point out that most public schools in the state do not have basic infrastructure like furniture and books to operate, including those in the state capital, the seat of government. Even Bauchi central primary school located at Kofar Fada lacks chairs, forcing pupils to sit on a bare floor throughout lessons’ period. Instead of the Governor to face those kinds of challenges squarely, he is busy distributing cars to thugs and political loyalists. Is that an indication of reviving the economy?
Any serious minded reformer should have keen interest in the educational sector because it is the driving tool of any economy in the world. But distributing cars and motorcycles is nothing but misplacement of priorities which is ultimately a signal of a confuse government.
No serious economic revival will take place when the educational sector is not revived and encouraged to prosper.
No serious economic revival will stand when teachers’ salaries are not paid and when they are not encouraged doing their job.
No economic revival will stand when the people of the state are sick and are not supplied with drugs and better health care —-instead, cars and motorcycles are distributed to criminals.
No economy will be revived in a state like Bauchi with abundant agricultural potentials, if it farmers were not supplied with fertilizer and modern farming equipment.
In a country like ours someone does not need to go far to understand why our government result in misplaced priorities. In a democracy with no critically constructive opposition to challenge those in power, and where sycophants and praise singers thrive, leaders will always act on what please them unmindful of whether their actions will impact positively or not.
It is said that the pen is mightier than the sword; my call to the likes of Sani Tahir is to use their pen and offer constructive criticisms to our public officials instead of being sycophants and praise singers. This will go a long way in putting them on their toes to do the right thing to enable us move forward as a people.
Haruna Mohammed Salisu is a 400 level student from the Department of mass communication, Bayero University Kano. 08063180608