“Tinubu’s First Weeks’ll Be Recorded In History As One That Took Major Turn For The Worse” — Northern Elders

Bola Ahmed Tinubu
Bola Ahmed Tinubu

Hakeem Baba-Ahmed, Director of Publicity and Advocacy, Northern Elders Forum (NEF), has expressed concern over hastily made decisions by the Federal Government that fail to address the pressing challenges faced by Nigerians in their daily lives.

According to the Director, the initial weeks of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s administration will be remembered as a period of leadership that increased existing problems significantly.

The NEF also expressed concern that the administration’s attempts to rectify mistakes have been largely unsuccessful.

The multitude of proposed plans and policies, the forum said, may further worsen the already intolerable living conditions for Nigerians.

Baba-Ahmed, in a statement released on Monday, said: “Northern Elders Forum has exercised an informed restraint to comment on state of affairs of the North and Nigeria for reasons elders should be associated with. First, the electoral process is technically still active with challenges before the judiciary being considered.

“What responsible Nigerians owe our democratic process is to encourage a healthy respect for those who, going by our constitution, have powers to lead us as we speak. The judicial process also deserves encouragement to live up to its mission, and efforts to taint its image for partisan or other interests must be condemned. Second, our Forum recognises the challenging circumstances under which the Tinubu administration assumed responsibility to steer the country away from further damage.

“What we owe our leaders at this moment are prayers, encouragement and counsel, not hasty conclusions and condemnation. Finally, the Forum has remained sensitive to the value of constructive use of time and circumstances, particularly in the face of unprecedented hardship under which Nigerians live today.

“It has become necessary, nonetheless, to speak on a number of important issues, so that the leadership and citizens will find some common grounds as they contemplate the next few steps.

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“Now that President Tinubu is putting together a cabinet, the Forum hopes that Nigerians will see improvements in the manner decisions and plans of the administration are being handled.

“Most Nigerians do not need convincing that the country had been reduced to a very sorry state by the last administration, and sacrifices and informed policies and decisions will need to be made to make a transition to a more productive economy, more secure communities and a more united country.

“We believe that the administration has erred in embarking on major decisions before it even took its first faltering steps. Attempts to correct mistakes have not been very successful, and these have been made worse by the barrage of plans and policies being hinted at, which will make life even more intolerable for the Nigerian. Where efforts have been made to correct mistakes, they appeared too hastily decided and will, in the long term, do little to relieve the desperate challenges of daily living of Nigerians.

“On the whole, the first few weeks of President Tinubu will be recorded by history as the act of a leadership that made bad situations considerably worse, and fails to explain why. The Forum prefers to believe this is not the intention of the administration, but it shares the agony of the citizen whose life has taken a major turn for the worse in the last few weeks.

“The Forum wishes to advise the administration to consider taking some basic steps to improve the context in which it seeks to achieve short and long term goals. The most important at this stage is to communicate with Nigerians in a manner that lets us understand why it has become necessary that we should go through major pains, including whether they are inevitable or avoidable.

“The citizen is entitled to know why it is now impossible for millions of families to feed; why his child may soon be out of school, and why his life has no timeline for recovery. Nigerians want to know how we got here, who and what was responsible for the prices we are paying for their actions, and what the administration plans to do to bring the past to book.”