Mr. Akin Osuntokun, former Political Adviser to President Olusegun Obasanjo has said President Muhammadu Buhari disappointed the intelligentsia who supported his candidacy in 2015.
He also said it is sad that having failed to meet expectations of the masses, the Buhari Presidency cannot be redeemed since it has continued to deny the reality of its failures.
Osuntokun, who also served in the Umaru Yar’Adua administration as the director-general of the News Agency of Nigeria, NAN, further accused President Buhari of insincerity in his fights against corruption; saying the NNPC which the President took charge of has become an organisation of fraud.
He told Vanguard: “You see, you cannot give what you don’t have. Buhari’s government is a reflection of the totality of his personality. The tragedy of Nigeria is that many people, the intelligentsia, the people who supported him knew that he had these shortcomings and inadequacies that he has exhibited, they had seen it in him before. Regardless, they said let us give him an opportunity, just as you are asking now to maybe mend his ways or try and remedy what has made his incumbency less appealing. Each one of those people has been terribly disappointed and they say so openly.
“I didn’t support him, I had always been very critical of him and the way he has turned out is the way I had projected him, so I had never deluded myself. Those who chose to turn a blind eye to his shortcoming have themselves to blame. If one year to the presidential election and one who said that an attack on Boko Haram is an attack on the North, why should anybody be blinded to that kind of revelation of the kind of president he would be.
“It was only when he became the candidate of the APC that he started moderating and denying some of the things that he said. So, he had shown himself sufficiently enough for people to know the end result.
“However, human beings are creations of hope and they said let us give him the latitude, and as Wole Soyinka said it is like giving somebody a loan for him to redeem a debt and unfortunately rather than redeeming it, he has defaulted spectacularly.
“What is he going to do? When you don’t accept the reality but rather you are in denial. When you deny reality, your potential for redemption is a non starter. If the president is saying that the Fulani militia come from Libya and that they are not Nigerians, why would I expect anything different?
“And as I said if his own governors who are themselves not saints could recently accuse the NNPC of malfeasance, and the same NNPC is the same organisation he has inserted himself right, left and centre; purged out the leadership of the NNPC to introduce extreme political lopsidedness, nepotism, exercising the power of the minister of petroleum, you have the GMD from Bauchi, the chief of staff on the board, you have almost a total takeover of NNPC and what has been the result? It is one of the results that you have seen now; that your own governors, APC governors are accusing that organisation that you have taken over, that should be a model of what the anti-corruption that you are preaching, explicitly accusing that organisation of fraud. So, where is the potential to expect anything different?
“Some months ago, the president was in Kano and said that he was happy at the large crowd because the people from the South would see that his own people from the North have not deserted him. This is what the president of Nigeria said. Not long ago, he went to Bauchi where he was reporting Obasanjo to them and said that when Lai Mohammed wanted to respond to Obasanjo’s Memo that he said, ‘no don’t respond to him because you are from the same constituency.’ They call it dog whistle. When you are speaking in coded language to an audience that will be able to get what you are saying. That Obasanjo is after me, that the Yoruba are after me.”