One Year of Buhari Administration: The Knocks, Achievements

May 29, 2016 makes it exactly one year that President Muhammadu Buhari assumed Office as President and Commander-In-Chief of The Federal Republic of

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One Year of Buhari Administration: The Knocks, Achievements
President Muhammadu Buhari

May 29, 2016 makes it exactly one year that President Muhammadu Buhari assumed Office as President and Commander-In-Chief of The Federal Republic of Nigeria after his stint as Military Head of State between 1984 and 1985.

After three unsuccessful democratic attempts to take over the saddle of the country’s most coveted seat, the Daura born herdsman, respected for his integrity, eventually became democratically elected President of Nigeria with a promise to implement the All Progressives Congress, APC Change Mantra.

There was no doubt the expectation of Nigerians across party, ethnic and religious lines reached an all-time high in terms of believe that the Buhari administration will bring about the needed positive change, previous governments failed to address. One of the major decisions the administration had to immediately contend with was the power sector. This led to a 45% increment in electricity tariff. Though Labour Unions and a host of Nigerians spoke vehemently against the increment, the Buhari administration stuck to its gun and announced the stoppage of “the obnoxious, corrupt and questionable monthly N750 fixed charge for each electricity consumer with effect from February 2016”. It must be stated however that the power situation has worsened and Nigerians are waiting to see the magic wand the present administration will deploy to tackle the poor electricity generation, distribution and supply.

The administration despite recording an all-time high of 5,000 megawatts of electricity generation at some point in time, suddenly slumped to less than 2,000 megawatts, no thanks to the resurgence of militant activities in the Niger Delta.

The target of 7,000 megawatts by the end of 2016 and 10,000 megawatts by 2019 may be a mirage if the administration does not immediately stem the tide of crude and gas pipelines’ vandalism as well as vandalism of electricity lines.

The APC led administration has consistently come under severe knocks in the area of managing our fragile economy. Nigerians believe President Muhammadu Buhari and his economic team, headed by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo lacks the capacity to turn the economy around for good, even though the administration has continue to stress that looting of the Nation’s treasury under the last administration, lack of will to save for the rainy day, drastic fall in the price of crude oil at the International Market, coupled with glut in supply as well as non- diversification of the economy in the past, were responsible for the current precarious state of the country’s socio-economic life. This position was given credence by statement credited to the immediate past Minister of Finance and Coordinating Minister of the Economy, Dr. Mrs.) Ngozi Okonjo Iweala.

The Buhari administration has however continue to assure Nigerians that reflating the economy with N350 billion immediately for infrastructural projects and budgeting N200 billion for road construction across the six geopolitical zones as appropriated for in the 2016 budget, will expand critical infrastructures and create jobs. This is also not forgetting the promise of stimulating diversification in solid minerals and agro-allied industry for the private sector to thrive.

It is also vitally important to note that bailout funds disbursed to States to pay salary arrears of civil servants and by implication boosting socio-economic life were mismanaged by the State Governors.

A major sore point of the Buhari administration is the seeming inability to manage the fuel crisis, no thanks to the unclear direction as it affects Forex.

It will also take a longer time to assess how far the President Muhammadu Buhari administration has succeeded in building institutions or MDAs such as EFCC, NDLEA, Custom Service, the Police and Army.

The fight against corruption as well as the strides recorded in security, particularly the war against Boko Haram and Shi-ites, is hallmarks of the Buhari administration in the last one year.

This is however no forgetting emerging challenges of renewed militancy in the Niger Delta Creeks and the unending agitation for a sovereign State of Biafra by IPOB as well as MASSOB.

It’s still early days to state categorically how much the administration has achieved in terms of infrastructural development, because the first budget of the Buhari administration has just been signed into law, but the repair of the crude line supplying Warri, Kaduna and Port-Harcourt Refineries, which has made the four refineries to start operations until the latest attacks by Niger Delta Avengers is indeed a worthy achievement. The crude line was destroyed seven years ago and abandoned by the last administration, but it was fixed by the Buhari government and the four Refineries are coming back on stream, even though they are still very far from their production capacities.

Nigerians eagerly await the take-off of Second Niger Bridge, Lagos-Calabar Rail Line, continuation of the Lagos-Kaduna Rail Project and the massive construction/ expansion of major roads connecting the six geopolitical zones in the country, as appropriated in the 2016 fiscal estimate.


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