President Buhari and communication — New Telegraph EDITORIAL
Posted by News Express | 18 August 2021 | 2 times
Just over three weeks ago, President Muhammadu Buhari paid a courtesy call on the Emir of his hometown of Daura, Katsina State, Dr Umar Faruk Umar, in his palace. Speaking on the occasion, President Buhari enjoined businessmen and women, contractors, and other privileged Nigerians, considered to be beneficiaries of government patronage, to always be interested in the discharge of their Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR).
“I don’t want your cheques. Go and assist our communities instead of trying to return kickbacks to public officers…,” President Buhari had said. He expressed his desire to visit Daura more frequently but for the high cost of presidential movement. However, the President said his heart was with the people. “We are known for farming, and I have my farm here.
I would come every two weeks, and no one can stop me. “But the cost of the movement is high. I would rather have it (the money) used to better our schools, clinics, and hospitals,” the number one citizen said. He also expressed gratitude to God for the continued togetherness of Africa’s most populous nation. “We thank God for keeping us together. From January 15, 1966, the country had a 30-month civil war that resulted in the loss of about a million lives,” the President remarked. CSR will help transform communities across the country and New Telegraph commends the President for admonishing the beneficiaries of government patronage to always keep faith with the initiative.
Failure by business organisations and other beneficiaries of government patronage will deny the country the needed infrastructure and other wherewithal to be in good stead to aspire to stable economic growth. Much as we agree that the private sector should hold itself ready to complement the efforts of governments through the prompt execution of CSR-oriented projects, among other activities, it is the prerogative of the different tiers of government to initiate people and business friendly policies and programmes that will stimulate sustainable economic development through improved entrepreneurial activities.
There has been an unacceptably low performance deficit on the part of federal and state governments regarding such. Security is key to economic growth. Yet the Federal Government has not been able to unmask the sponsors of criminal activities such as terrorism, insurgency and abduction so as to bring the three-pronged menace under control. Instead, the Federal Government is more interested in making the deployment of additional funds to the security agencies and in pronouncing some members of the dreaded terrorist group, Boko Haram, as repentant individuals.
This is not only wrong but retrogressive as has been indicated by the long season of insecurity, with the accompanying massive socio-economic dislocation in the country. Mr. President is free to travel to Daura as frequently as he likes. But, it should be underscored that Nigerians did not elect him to be a tourist. Such endeavours should not be encouraged. The cost of presidential movement, as indicated by Mr. President, is usually high. Many individuals, who may not have clearly defined responsibilities, are normally among the aides who make presidential trips and are made to draw fat allowances from the already bleeding public till.
Regrettably, President Buhari has a reputation for touring different parts of the world. Credence is given to his love for travelling at a huge national cost. The country could have saved the huge revenue loss on account of frequent presidential trips through the increased use of the nation’s ambassadors and high commissioners across the world.
Though the county’s leader may fly out when it becomes necessary, the ambassadors and high commissioners should be allowed to justify their appointments by carrying out assignments on behalf of Nigeria in their host-countries. As admitted by Mr. President, while millions of people died during the civil war, but the main casualty was actually the profound accompanying socio-economic dislocation imposed on the Eastern Region and some parts of the Mid-Western Region.
It will not be out of place to enhance the teaching of the history in educational institutions to the extent of doing justice even to the unpleasant aspects of history such as the Biafra-Nigeria war, Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade and age-old tradition of killing twins. We extend our kudos to the Historical Society of Nigeria (HSN) for tackling the Federal Ministry of Education over the suspension of the teaching of history in schools.
The battle of HSN has resulted in the recent resumption in the teaching of history once again. New Telegraph encourages Mr. President to constantly bare his mind on matters as he did during his visit to the Emir of his hometown rather than speak through his media aides. This has enabled the people to know his feelings on the issues raised and be able to make the feedback available to him. President Buhari now has a burden of responsibility on his shoulders to appreciate, reflect and internalise the feedback and know how to integrate such in the promulgation of people and business-friendly policies and programmes. Governance is made much easier for a leader who is willing to communicate and take advantage of feedback from the people.
Source: News Express
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