Buhari’s Presidency: Change Agents will face challenges of Institutional Reform

Nigerian Insight

General Muhammadu Buhari (GCFR), President-Elect, the party leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), in his April 1st Acceptance Speech declared that “Today, history has been made and change has finally come” and that “democracy and the rule of law will be re-established in the land,” while insecurity, corruption, and economic problems will be dealt with accordingly.

Dr. Oby Ezekwesili is right when she concluded that “individuals build institutions and that the quality of the individual determines the quality of institutions.” President-Elect Buhari will go through the process of determining who should be appointed to serve in his cabinet after the inauguration on May 29th, 2015.As an individual, Buhari has exemplified himself as a man of impeccable character endowed with inner spiritual stability and resolve which many Nigerians admired and identified such as honesty, kindness, determination, hard work, believe in God, respect for self and for others. He also believed that every Nigerian should have the freedom to worship his/her God and encourage people to accept those who do not worship the same God with them.

Buhari change agents, are those individuals who would be lucky enough to be called to serve to change Nigeria and who must endeavour to model these principles and values. They must endeavour to rebuild institutions. They must be knowledgeable, committed, hardworking, and honest. They must adhere to the rule of law and promote the idea that no one is above the law. They will endeavor to transcend ethnic and religious influences. They will endeavour and be willing to be teachers and students of the change effort. They are the change agents and the new vision for Nigeria.

The outgoing President Jonathan is also right when he said that; “the incoming President, General Muhammadu Buhari can only succeed if Nigerians cooperate with him and are ready to make sacrifices for the nation.” The sacrifice must begin with the self by the change agents. Change agents must work within the constitutional framework and the rule of law. They are not above the law and must have the welfare of their workers at heart. Change must begin with the individual. The individual must perceive that the institution has its interests at heart. Change agents must model effective leadership by putting the welfare of its workers first. This is the change Buhari expects. Any institutional reform must begin with changing mindset.

President-Elect Buhari should therefore endeavour to demonstrate in his first 100 days in office that no Nigerian will be above the law and that lawlessness will not be tolerated. The National Orientation Agency (NOA) should be revamped to reflect Buhari’s vision for a new Nigeria. In a democracy, one needs to legislate on values that should be taught at our schools, universities, colleges of education, polytechnics and at home. This is one lesson our president-elect Buhari should not forget.

“Yes, We Can.” President Obama believes that Nigeria can indeed rebuild its democracy, commit to the rule of law as the nation tackles corruption and find alternative ways of sustaining its economy. Rebuilding institutions through the efforts of Buhari change agents will be a difficult task, but it a task that must be done. We must work towards building stronger institutions rather than building strong individuals. Other nations of the world have overcome similar situations and with determination under a Buhari presidency Nigerians will certainly overcome the problems.

Finally, it is our view in the Nigerian Insight that we have an individual and collective obligation to ensure that the Gubernatorial and State Assembly elections slated for 11th April, 2015 are conducted peacefully devoid of any rancor. The police in Kaduna State are also urged to extend its search light to areas suspected of being used to store arms by supporters of the PDP establishment in preparation for 11th April elections. Let us all appreciate the fact that election is not war! It is always the best party with mass followership that will emerge victorious; so help us God!

Leave a Reply