True patriots are those who unite in interest and purpose in order to better the welfare of their subjects.” – Anonymous
As usual, the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Muhammadu Buhari, has released the list of much awaited ministerial nominees. Though, this time around, with slight changes, the process of appointing ministers in this country remains a conundrum – a ceremonious start that ends unceremoniously!
As position has to differ when it comes to raging national issue like this, I don’t think I have issues with any nominees as far as I am not the one they are to work for or work with, even if they are to be appointed to virtually work for my interest. I strongly beliefs the story of Nigeria would change one day.
Critics, not critiques have been making their positions known concerning this matter basing on either party affiliation, discharging of their civic responsibilities (freedom of opinion and expression), and some are complementing their professional demands by questioning the personalities nominated; their pasts, previous actions and decisions and allegations leveled against them. For me, my issue is not that.
What I am really concern about in the overall matter is why the government Nigerians voted for on the emblem of “change” refuses to question the status quo, analyzed and review it, and forestall a formidable directions for posterity sake.
In this regard, the nomination and transmission of nominees’ name to the Senate without attaching their portfolios has become “lingering hypothesis.” Every government is conditioned on the motives of purpose, principles and participation (inclusion).
We can’t continue with what we have been practicing for the past twenty years without any meaningful reward and be expecting the country to change overnight. This requires citizens trusting the people in authority and the people in authority should also be accountable, transparent and responsible to their citizens.
I prefer to use the word hypothesis because, in the academic parlance, it comes with intelligent guess, assumptions or suggestions that has to be tested inorder to determine the validity or otherwise of the guess. Though, the guess has to be clear, lucid, testable, objective and have contextual relativity.
This amounts to the fact that our successive governments have been guilty of ambiguity and vagueness because the hypothesis they are engaging the Senate is scientifically erred! For doing this for long by giving the Senate headache by sending them names without attaching portfolios to it, the process will end in committing both “alpha and beta” at the same time.
It means the Senate has to screen the nominees by assuming their duties, roles and responsibilities to the government. This devoid the system of its perceived meritoriousness, credibility and generality of the whole screening process. The senators would need to be wandering round the bush to search for questions where there is known, and we shouldn’t be surprise when we keep experiencing the “bow and go” practice.
Academias understood the differences between practice and theory; and they have drawn obvious lines to show the limitations between them. Though, there are interplay between them. But those interplay can only be achieved when people are called to practically replicate those conjectures that have been proven in the theoretical realm.
I don’t dispute it that those nominees are achievers, or whatever of sort you want to ascribe to them. But what I am certain about is that when an administrative technocrat is assigned a duty that is suitable to the personality of a political technocrat, there would be problem. In the same vein, when a professional technocrat is assigned the task of political technocrat, the result remains the same!
Nigeria is too big and blessed than to be conducting hypothesis every four years. This is because of the minimal period of our electoral cycle. These people are called to service for a period that is not even up to four years, and some of those services that are required of them as as daunting as reviving a “dead soul!”
I won’t dispute the assertion that ministers are only meant to oversee affairs of Ministries, Departments and Agencies of government. Let’s take a minute to ask ourselves how possible it is for an individual to perform diligently where he is basically shrewd-less? It is very difficult to meet up. This is because one would have to subject him/herself to learning of rubrics and theatrics of that terrain, which may be difficult to be revealed to them, due to the level of rottenness in our public service.
But conversely, if the names of the nominees are sent to the Senate with portfolios attached to it, it will awaken the sense of the nominees to know that nothing is expected from them below excellence and prove that they truly deserve that respect they have earned; it will clarify the ambition of the government and strategies it want to adopt to achieve it, as well as making the ambition of the government more appealing to the people.
Until we adopt how to screen our ministers based on portfolio that want to be given to them, it is possible for the story to remain the duck chasing a wild goose. We have to be direct, diligent, consistent and precise in the process because it will also save the process from the persisting “bow and go” traditions.
It is high time for us to deliberately terminate that strategies of flourishing secrecy, nepotism, triviality and indecisiveness that has been plaguing us as a nation and dragging us backward in the comity of nation. When the hypothesis becomes a snag, it calls for reviewing, re-framing and if need be, it has to be changed entirely.
Sulyman, Sodeeq Abdulakeem