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Opinions of Sunday, 4 October 2015

Columnist: Daily Guide Network

The Buhari standards


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President Muhammadu Buhari continues to stand apart from the typical African political heads. His modesty and abhorrence for greed and graft are being manifested day in and day out, even in the absence of a full complement of a government as it were.

His decision to run the petroleum ministry himself shows how much he intends making a change in the fortunes of the nation in the midst of human sharks.

In a country affected by many years of corruption and in which only a few can pass the morality test, his decisions can hardly be faulted, no matter how tough they are.

Declaring his assets and demanding same from his subordinates is something rarely witnessed in the African context.

For us in Ghana it shows that when a leader blazes the morality trail his lieutenants dare not do the contrary.

If wishes were real horses, we would have mounted them here in our own Ghana. Unfortunately, we can only watch the unfolding Buhari-driven policies and savour how these are set to change the face of governance in a country which has for long been a byword for corruption.

The first hundred days of his assumption of the leadership of Africa’s most populous yet difficult to govern nation, have been examined by the outside world and the scoreboard has been relatively remarkable.

Within the few days that the mantle of leadership was passed to him, the nation’s kitty has been filled to its seams – something never witnessed in contemporary times, especially during the tenure of his predecessor.

It is lamentable the level of thievery that the country was subjected to by the Nigerian elite, even as the number of the poor continued to swell, providing the ingredients for social unrest.

Recommending the ways of the General to his counterparts elsewhere would not be demanding too much of such dignitaries or even asking them to do the unattainable.

Leading corruption-free lives in government is a task that can be undertaken as being manifested under the Buhari-led administration in a nation of over a hundred and fifty million people. Why can’t it be replicated here in a country of less than a thirty million people?

Whoever thought Nigeria or Naija – as citizens of the West African country refer to their country euphemistically – would provide a leader whose footprints would stand out as a benchmark for good governance?

With politicians who stole so much from the nation’s coffers now returning their loot to the country’s coffers, the reality of Buhariphobia cannot be dismissed.

His Independence Day speech was magnanimous yet underpinned by a sternness common to leaders in a hurry to effect a change for posterity to record. He said he was not out to hound anybody. All he is seeking is for a better Nigeria devoid of the open thievery which has bedeviled the oil-rich nation for far too long.

Are his counterparts elsewhere hearing and watching? Maybe, just maybe!

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