Buhari’s 100 days: In the right direction



SIR: The 100-day phenomenon refers to the point at which we look back at the occurrence of an event and assess what has happened. When a political leader enters office, his 100th day is a significant mark; the point at which we first formally examine how they have fared in their role.

President Muhammadu Buhari recently hit this milestone having been inaugurated as Nigeria’s leader on May 29, 2015, and is now subject to analysis of how well or how badly he has done so far. Of course, his political opponents will highlight any areas they consider to have been poorly handled. Overall, from what I have observed, the opposition party is quite muted and its main criticism is that economic growth has slowed since they left office.

The people on the street do not use GDP as a measurement of improvement or progress. From what I am hearing them say, there is ‘steady light ‘ where there was none before and Boko Haram is being contained. These are their simple and pragmatic benchmarks for a positive change.

The turbulent events about the elections of the leaders for both the Senate and the House of Representatives have left no doubt that the President respects due democratic process, as laid down by the constitution and the law. However, those who consider themselves to be more skilled in political machinations should be aware that one who holds such high regard for legislative rules and conduct will rigidly accept any less from any person. I would describe Buhari as a patriot politician, as Nelson Mandela, Winston Churchill and Charles de Gaul were. These men all went into politics with a single intent and that was to see what they could do for their country and not what their country could do for them. Buhari is surrounded by many Machiavellian individuals, which is expected in a political arena. Although this is part of the landscape to date, he has stood unshaken by their activities.

In my view, Mr. President has had a highly credible first 100 days in office. He is considered diligent and purposeful. Dissenters will always appear in the political field pursuing personal agendas which are often not consistent with the wellbeing of the majority. Their selfishness, which is a distraction to the task at hand, is a challenge all leaders eventually face. A progressive movement is strongest when its component parts are unified in its commitment to the shared objectives, hence the party must be with the President and the President with the party.

The great Nelson Mandela once said that there are times when a leader has to take decisions that they feel to be correct even when their colleagues and the public may not be agreeable with those actions. We have seen some of that already and it is a heavy head for he that wears the crown.

May God bless the nation with the continued vision to see that here is a person who is for them and not for his own ambitions.

• Patrick Berry,patrickberry@btinternet.com

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