Muhammadu Buhari, BUHARISM and Nigerian Economy
Buharism is a term rooted in the politics of Nigeria, referring to the economic principles and the political ideology leader of Nigeria headed by General Muhammadu Buhari from 31 December 1983 to 27 August 1985 when he and his deputy were removed in a palace coup. The then government introduced War Against Indiscipline(WAI).
Wikipedia inserted Muhammadu Buhari’s economic policies in the world online dictionary recently and named it ‘BUHARISM’ after the President of Nigeria who believe in his policy of giving a save heaven for poor masses of the country against the likes and will of the elites in the country.
Buhari’s policies since from during the military era was targeted towards the poor masses who seems not to understand in the early 80’s even-though the elites used the masses against his government. Now the story is different, though there is hardship in the country but the masses still support the government for been sincere and open in its dealings.
Nigeria Television Authority (NTA) goes way back to the military era of Muhammadu Buhari then the head of military government and now as President Muhammadu Buhari of under civilian administration.
MILITARY HEAD STATE
Buhari joined the Nigerian Army by enrolling in the Nigerian Military Training College (NMTC) in 1961. In February 1964, the college was upgraded to an officer commissioning unit of the Nigerian Army and renamed the Nigerian Defence Academy (NDA) (prior to 1964, the Nigerian government sent cadets who had completed their NMTC preliminary training to mostly Commonwealth military academies for officer cadet training. From 1962 to 1963, Buhari underwent officer cadet training at Mons Officer Cadet School in Aldershot in England.
The new regime established a Supreme Military Council, a Federal Executive Council and a Council of States. The number of ministries was trimmed to 18 while the administration carried out a retrenchment exercise among the senior ranks of the civil service and police.
The rebuilding included removing or cutting back the excesses in national expenditure, obliterating or removing completely, corruption from the nation’s social ethics, shifting from mainly public sector employment to self-employment. Buhari also encouraged import substitution industrialization based to a great extent on the use of local materials. However, tightening of imports led to reduction in raw materials for industries causing many industries to operate below capacity.
Other economic measures by Buhari took the form of counter trade, currency change, price reduction of goods and services.
PETROLEUM TECHNOLOGY DEVELOPMENT FUND (PTDF)
Buhari served as the Chairman of the Petroleum Trust Fund (PTF), a body created by the government of General Sani Abacha, and funded from the revenue generated by the increase in price of petroleum products, to pursue developmental projects around the country.
A 1998 report in New African praised the PTF under Buhari for its transparency, calling it a rare “success story.” Till today there are some villages and towns that PTF projects still exist.
Muhammadu Buhari contested in three different occasion against Olusegun Obasanjo in 2003, Umaru Musa Yar’adua in 2007 and Goodluck Jonathan in 2011.
In 2003 Buhari contested on the platform of All People’s Party (APP), while in 2007 APP was changed to All Nigerian People’s Party in which Muhammadu Buhari contested against his states man, Umaru Musa Yar’adua and lost. Congress For Prograssives Change (CPC) was the platform that Buhari ran and lost to President Goodluck Jonathan in 2011.
Muhammadu Buhari ran in the 2015 Presidential election as a candidate of the All Progressives Congress party (APC) after a merger of CPC, some aggrieved part of All Progressive Grand Alliance (APGA), Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN), ANPP ahead of 2015 general election. The APC platform was built around Buhari’s image as a staunch anti-corruption fighter and his incorruptible and honest reputation.
Buhari met an empty treasury when he took over power from the PDP after defeating Goodluck Jonathan in a tensed campaign that runs through to the elections. To source funds to close the shortfall in revenue and fund an expansionary capital budget, Buhari traveled to 20 countries seeking loans. Thereby, expansionary budget allocation to finance infrastructure is pushed back to 2017.
In the first year of the administration, Naira, the currency of Nigeria depreciated in the black market leading to a gulf between the official exchange rate and the black-market rate. A resulting shortage in foreign exchange hit various businesses including petroleum marketers. In May, 2016, the government announced a rise in the official pump price of petroleum to curtail shortfall in the commodity as a result of foreign exchange shortages.
President Muhammadu Buhari against all odds ends the subsidy regime in Nigeria with the masses in the country in full support but the elites are not happy about it especially the oil tycoons.
With this act, Nigeria saved hundreds of billions of Naira in the payment of subsidy claim that run the country out of fund to the extend of borrowing to pay salary at the close end of the Jonathan administration.
The National Assembly, House of Representatives was on the heels of subsidy claimants with an extensive public hearing and investigation that uncover the subsidy was a huge scam to divert public funds in the country. Many of such companies are prosecuted by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) in Nigeria courts.
Just last week, the US court filled a case in the United States court against former petroleum Minister, Diezani Allison Madueke, Kola Aluko and Omokore for diversion of Nigerian petroleum product for personal gains.
N-POWER (Social Investment Scheme)
One of the Social Investment policy of Buhari’s administration is the N-Power N-Power Volunteer Corp which involves a massive deployment of 500,000 trained graduates who will assist to improve the inadequacies in our public services in education, health and civic education. Some of these graduates will also help in actualizing Nigeria’s economic and strategic aspirations of achieving food security and self-sufficiency.
The scheme has empowered In 2016 engaged 200,000 N-Power Volunteers. The N-Power Volunteer Corps is the post-tertiary engagement initiative for Nigerians between 18 and 35. It is a paid volunteering programme of a 2-year duration. The graduates will undertake their primary tasks in identified public services within their proximate communities.
Currently screening the 2017, the Federal Government is enlisting 300,000 more. The June 2017 Application is only open to the Graduate Category the N-Power Volunteer Corps.
All the 500,000 empowered will be on monthly allowances of N30,000 monthly for the duration of the programme.
In 2015 there was high inflation on prices of food stuffs in Nigeria owing to the fact that most farmers have either reduce the size of there farms or have abandon farming. This made the price of food stuff to sore in the markets and also made it difficult for the citizens with the cash crunch situation the country is facing due to low prices of crude oil in the international market leading to lean revenue to Nigerian government who before now solely depends 100% on crude oil sales to finance its budget.
Muhammadu Buhari came to office with a moto, that we should go back to farm, there we will get sufficient to feed ourselves and feed others. Two years after this call early June this year Nigeria export its first badge of Yam product to United States of America and follow up with same to Europe.
Irish Patato predominantly grown in Jos, Plateau State that used to sale in the region of N5,000/N6,000 per bag for more than 4 years has now dropped to N2,000/N2,500 per bag.
Even though some are complaining they have not gotten fertilizer, many have appreciated the federal government efforts in subsidizing the fertilizer to an affordable prices to farmers across the country.
In Kaduna, reports have it that currently, almost 60% of people who paid for Hajj this year in the state are farmers.
Boko Haram, one can not write security situation in Nigeria’s recent history and not mention the insurgents that bedevil the Northeast of the country and tagged as the most deadly terrorist group in the world.
President Muhammadu Buhari took over from the past administration on the verge of almost near collapse of the entire zone, economically, socially, religiously, yet the terrorists claim to be fighting for religion and total lack of free movement without the fear of been bombed, shot or kidnapped by the insurgents.
Now the story is different, as the Nigerian Army has push the insurgents out of towns and cornered them to the bush, it came with a price of the army losing some of their finest soldiers in the battle to reclaim and regain the Northeast from the control of the insurgents.
The Nigerian Army are now well equipped with sophisticated arms to face the terrorists unlike the previous government where many soldiers ran and left the battle ground for fear of been killed by the insurgents who have a superior arms against theirs that is low and in some cases with limited ammunition to face Boko Haram.
This owe to the fact that the Insurgents were faced with superior power of Nigerian army that is motivated from all angle on and off the battle field both with support coming from the ground troops and the air.
“Lets Kill Corruption, Before Corruption Kills Us”, is the slogan that Muhammadu Buhari frequently used preciding the 2015 general elections.
There was a video that went viral moments after Buhari took over power, when former Prime Minister of UK, Mr. James Cameron was telling the Queen that, ” Nigerians are Fantastically Corrupt.”
Nigeria in the immediate pass government has seen the worst of corruption in its entire history, where stolen money are found in almost in an unexpected places like, over heads tank, cars, shops, houses, septic tanks and in some case, money left at the airport and no one come forward to claim it. That is how public funds was stolen in the country before the coming of Buhari.
During Buhari’s campaign in the build up before the 2015 elections, he repeatedly say all monies stolen will be chased and brought back to government coffers for the benefit of the masses, that added to his advantage during the election, because Nigerians knew they were milked dry by some opportunists in government and only him can chase the money.
Several corruption cases are before courts prosecuted by EFCC, on the other hand unknown people have refunded money to government secretly which recently a court in Lagos ordered the Federal Government to publish the names of those looters who have refund money to government.
Corruption is a fight that will take a long time end where in some cases money might never be recovered due to lack of clear cut evidence against them, especially those outside Nigeria due to stringent law process in those countries and the money that will be required to use to chase the money.
63,000 ghost workers were discovered in the pay-roll of the federal civil service in Nigeria after a thorough screening of the work force. Billions of Naira was saved from the discovery by the Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information system (IPPIS).
Ministry were merged to reduce the cost of governance at the emergence of this government after President Muhammadu Buhari carefully selected his minister that trended for months in the Nigerian Social Media.
“One of the most significant things we have achieved is the introduction of the Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information system (IPPIS) which has saved the government in the region of N185 billion so far, the IPPIS wielded out about 65,000 ghost workers.” said Dr Joe Abah, the director-general of the Bureau of Public Sector Reforms (BPSR).
From the military era to date, Muhammadu Buhari have one thing in mind, which the citizens deserved. A better live for Nigerian poor and the masses in the form of social welfare and securing the lives and property of the citizens.
Muhammadu Buhari is currently in London on a medical leave. Report after an emergency meeting he had with the Vice President Prof. Yemi Osinbajo last week that “Buhari is in very good spirit and recuperating very quickly, and expected back soon.” Osinbajo.