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Bakare is correct about Tinubu’s leadership, according to Kalu

Aug 21, 2023 | Politics | 0 comments

Chief Emeka Charles Kalu, a veteran politician and PDP leader, is the National Coordinator of the PDP Coalition and Director General of Global Initiatives for Good Government (GIGG). He discussed OMENAZU, Pastor Tunde Bakare’s assault on Tinubu, and other important matters with EJIKEME. Excerpt: Several individuals have reacted to President Bola Tinubu’s Senate-cleared cabinet. How do you see them?

President Bola Tinubu did well in choosing his cabinet candidates from a balanced background, unlike a selfish system. He merits a eulogy for ensuring that his cabinet members were recruited across party lines, gender balance, young inclusivity, and compliance with due process in their biodata and qualification assessments, including all democratic procedures required to designate Federal Executive Cabinet (FEC) Members. His choice of cabinet members was remarkable since he ignored party feelings and chose new-generation technocrats without corruption records. His list includes former governors, although none have been convicted of public sector management crimes by a competent court. Therefore I endorse President Tinubu for not returning old hands to the office and instead using new ideas to coordinate and lead his beleaguered administration. He is embattled by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and Labour Party (LP) lawsuits about the 2023 presidential election’s integrity. I halt here till the tribunal rules on his legal victory.

You must know what happened throughout ministerial candidate screening and clearance. Did you observe the process?

I abhor favouritism and nepotism in African politics. Certainly, President Tinubu pleased Nigerians by appointing new cabinet members, but the law requires appropriate vetting. One may be an excellent ministerial candidate, but the platform through which they are evaluated and approved may violate ministerial appointment criteria. Due process is crucial in government business to preserve precedent as a reference to verified ideals. It’s unfair to break the law to hire an expert to run a government ministry. The appropriate thing to do is obey the law.

The President campaigned on ‘Renewed Hope’. Do his cabinet compositions indicate this in his administration?

Every guy wants hope. Like a cut-down tree, it can grow again. I reiterated that President Tinubu did well to carefully choose 75% of his cabinet members when they were allocated portfolios and inaugurated. Check how sensible, organized, and engaged these new leaders are. We appreciate their service and expect their best to get Nigeria running again. I constantly remind us that these fresheners must not be coerced, seduced, or politically conditioned under master-servant relationships of dues returns to their recommenders. They will perform poorly when this is done. This is what destroys nation-building greatness and appointees. The younger ones must avoid anything that might damage their public image.

Former All Progressives Party (APC) presidential candidate Pastor Tunde Bakare criticized President Bola Tinubu, calling his policies anti-people, stating he cannot manage change and that Nigerians are losing trust in the party. What do you think?

As a political philosopher, I believe in the reality and manifestation of things according to their values, output, time, and principles. A few days ago, Pastor Bakare publicly told Tinubu that Nigerians had lost trust in the APC-led Federal Government, which is true. President Tinubu removed gasoline subsidies after taking office, promising Nigerians a solution. Oh my god, nothing can stop the nation’s skyrocketing inflation nowadays. Fuel per litre is costly, and food costs are precarious. The Federal Government and the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) have disagreed on minimum wage increases and other conditions. How will residents withstand the economic downturn with unemployment, extreme lack, insecurity, and other urgent issues inherited from the previous administration? Nigerians have lost trust in APC as long as this system exists.

How do you feel about Senate President Godswill Ukpabio’s announcement of millions of Naira vacation allowances for federal legislators who have not served for two months following their inauguration?

I strongly deplore this. Approving large sums of money for federal politicians in their early careers sponsors, aids, and abets corruption, prebendalism, national cake-sharing syndrome, and irresponsibility in legislative administration. My concern is that this pooled money is never used for residents. Instead, politicians convert them to buying exotic vehicles, eating, winning with women, and other flamboyants while the people who elected them endure infrastructure ruin, poverty, frustration, and reckless abandon. Uncared-for voters survive on unmet political promises and media hoopla from their puppets and crumbs-pickers. Legislative leadership means monitoring the Executive organ for irresponsibility and power abuse, not using oversight and finances to profit themselves. Incorrectness of the system. What has the government done to ease residents’ fuel subsidy elimination pain? It means MPs’ delight is their monthly income, not discussing or moving motions to address insecurity or infrastructure issues for the first time since their inauguration. My fatherland service concept needs to be more truthful and misplaced.

How do you feel about the federal and state governments’ oil subsidy withdrawal palliatives?

I addressed this problem a few weeks ago. I maintain that palliative handouts without wage increases are half-baked Christmas presents. Salary increases, infrastructure development, naira market stabilization, and job growth are the best ways to survive inflation. Sharing palliatives will weary them faster than planned. But, when wages and other labour circumstances are improved, residents can better manage their expenditures, live, and adjust to the new pay conditions. In this hard economic calamity, employees and their families should breathe a sigh of relief by raising the minimum wage to N200,000 per month. Nigerians are despondent and traumatized under this regime, and nothing substantive has been done.

Several commentators claim the National Parliament, political parties, and Civil Society lack meaningful opposition to the present government. Does this claim make sense?

The only government without opposition is Unitary. Even under Benito Mussolini, unitary or centralized governments faced conflicts no matter how forceful the power actors were. First, the PDP and LP are in court, contesting the integrity of the presidential election that brought Tinubu to office. The National Assembly rejected Tinubu’s request for military action against the Niger Republic coup planners who overthrew the elected President. Labour Unions have been battling with this administration to maintain their rights, improve working conditions, and overcome other obstacles to Tinubu’s government. Every government does it, but coordinating itself is essential to respecting people’s yearnings.

Nnamdi Kanu, the IOPB Leader, has ordered the Sit-at-home to end in the South East, although governors and Ohanaeze Ndigbo want it ended. Considering all this, will sitting at home stop soon?

The South East governors, Ohanaeze Ndigbo, and concerned Igbo elite have worked to end the sit-at-home directive. The bogus Mazi Nnamdi Kanu letter was genuine. He composed and submitted the letter. Notwithstanding our disagreements on the Nigeria split, Mazi Kanu is my close buddy. He can clarify my position if you ask. I kept telling him I wanted a reformed Nigeria, not a split one. I prefer a National Unity Government to ruthlessly deconstruct shared brotherhood with other ethnic languages in the nation. Kanu’s letter and the governors’ efforts had some effect. Yet dread of the unknown frustrates everything. That is why the Federal Government should fully accessible Kanu and invite him and his liberation front to a conversation table. Mazi Nnamdi Kalu preaches freedom. Kanu wants the best for his people, and when the Tinubu administration focuses on and restructures Nigeria, he will soft-pedal and agree.

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