WHAT I thought was a balanced and objective piece on this page last week, has left me with a ‘bloody eye’ from readers of this column. In the piece entitled: “Between Expectations and Reality,” I had made a case for Nigerians to balance their expectations of the Buhari administration against the realities on the ground, as well as the need to moderate high expectations, even as I urged the government to hit the ground running because the patience of the people was fast running out.
But, apparently misreading and misjudging my views, some readers came with ‘bombs,’ ‘bazookas’ ‘grenades’ and other weapons against me and the position I canvassed.
In deference to readers’ right of reply and free speech, I hereby publish the reactions to my column of last week, even as I disagree with the sentiments and emotional outbursts of some of the respondents. I restate the points I sought to make: Yes, with no fuel, no electricity and hunger running riot in the land, things are indeed tough. But then, there are no quick fixes in governance anywhere in the world. Citizens ought to be apprised of the realities on ground so that they could balance that with expectations from government. Even at that, I argued that government needs to be told that they are losing popular support from majority of those that enthusiastically voted them in a year ago. But some saw the piece differently.
Below, angry reactions to my last week’s column…
I am highly disappointed in you
I am disappointed that you are still campaigning even after the election. As one of your fans, it is a pity that you people sold oranges as grapes to us. Catching thieves while we can’t feed isn’t governance. Under PDP, we didn’t descend to this level. Tell PMB we are tired! …0803-450-1680
You wrote: “Governance is a slow, painful process.” But under GEJ, you people wanted it to be ‘speedy and rosy process.’ Bare-faced hypocrites, you all.
Corruption can’t fight corruption
My brother, thank you for your write-up of today. You are gradually coming home (saying the truth). Nothing can save this government that came in with lies upon lies, which is tantamount to corruption. Tell me, Eric, can corruption fight corruption? Have a good day, sir!
You should have kept quiet
Osagie, it would have been better for you to have kept quiet rather than praising or pleading for elements in government, who cannot perform what they swore to uphold. …Austin, Asaba, 0803-617-4396
Insulting to Nigerians
Is it APC that will tell Nigerians the difference between reality and expectations or Nigerians should tell APC? You insult Nigerians really. Has APC within the last one year shown that it knows the difference between reality and expectations? Apart from singing about corruption, what has APC done? When there was corruption, was life this difficult for Nigerians? When APC was promising to turn ‘men into women,’ did it know the difference between reality and expectations?
Nothing is working
Tell me, these your ‘change agents,’ name one person from Buhari down, who did not help ruin Nigeria? Nothing is working today. All we hear is hope. Do ghosts and the dead have hope? The day you disguise and come down to the level of the ordinary man, the true meaning of poverty will be revealed to you. The man who borrowed money to buy forms is now having children schooling abroad. You are now writing fiction!
I totally disagree with you
Eric, I totally disagree with you on this write-up. Because when the APC was promising change, many believed that PMB is a miracle worker. They did not count the cost before venturing into governance. I still believe that Nigeria is a rich country, but the problem is management. I don’t see the light at the tunnel, until a team of economists are contracted to manage the economy. If you save millions without good management, it is of no benefit to the poor masses.
A great piece
Sir, I must say that for the first time, I read an article that was so pure and honest, without the normal sentiments. It is a good piece.
…Nathaniel Auta, Kaduna, 0813-321-4089
APC has lost focus
Osagie, not long ago, Nigerians were rated as having the uncommon capacity to endure hardship and suffering. Today’s afflictions are not new. What is new is that the government seems to be lost and is unable to offer plausible and convincing explanations for their inabilities and failures. For government to blame PDP and Goodluck Jonathan for every conceivable problem is cheap propaganda and Nigerians know it. The real problem is this: The APC government is unable to convince Nigerians that they can tackle the problems that now assail them. This is why Nigerians are fearful and jittery, and losing both faith and hope. The other unfortunate thing is that this government is so far unable to match action with their words, one year after. When you read APC’s lips, what they are actually saying is this: “We also need at least 16 years to clear PDP’s rot.” Sadly, Nigerians are not ready to wait that long.
…Pastor Sam Gar, 0817-406-4959
Intellectual, but biased in favour of APC
Mr. Osagie, you did a good, intellectual piece with some elements of bias (in favour of the ruling party). What APC government is doing reminds one of characters in the novel, ‘Animal farm.’ The poor economic policies have plunged this nation into untold hardship. I pray the government will not squander the goodwill bestowed on it by the good people of Nigeria. Blame game is not what we bargained for. The people’s patience should not be taken for granted.
Buhari will succeed
It smacks of mere narrow-mindedness and/or shortsightedness to anticipate that everything will suddenly become well as soon as Buhari ascends the presidency. Buhari’s sincerity of purpose, integrity, etc. Remain the source of my undying trust that his administration will build the foundation of a new Nigeria, where corruption will not wear a badge of honour. The current hardship will certainly become a thing of the past.
…Barrister Ngozi Ogbomor, 0803-339-7362
Re: Between expectations and reality
You concluded your piece with the following words: ‘Surely he still has a lot of work to do in the economic turnaround of our country, the infrastructural engineering. We hope he hits it fast as the clock ticks fast’. It is his inability to quickly address the issues you raised above that has led to the reality on the ground. Mr. President needs to know that: One: The war against corruption is not a war against PDP but a war against all corrupt politicians. EFFC should dig deeper and wider. Two: Nigeria is his constituency and not the north or APC. When he takes Nigeria as his constituency he will discover that there is strength in diversity. Three: That an orange fruit cannot give you a pineapple juice no matter how hard you squeeze it. You cannot give what you don’t have. Mr. President should look for a way of strengthening his weakness and maximising his strength. Four: Mr. president should know that you don’t put a fresh wine in an old wineskin. He must retrieve his mandate from the old wineskin if he must have good success. Five: Mr. president should know that only a platform of love can bring about good success. Nigerians are more divided today than ever before. Bitterness, vengeance, marginalisation make the land unproductive.
… Dr. Okey Echefu, Aba, 08033412320