ABCDEFGGHI=Avoid Bribery & Corruption Daily Everywhere For Good Governance Here Immediately for a [email protected]
It is now [email protected] in captivity for students kidnapped at Chibok + Leah Sharibu. Appreciation to #Bringbackourgirls for keeping the matter on the front pages of Nigerian minds.
Senator, I did not say Saint, Okorocha’s suggestion that Nigeria urgently requires a surgical reduction to NASS with one senator and three representatives per state is a good beginning, no matter what you think of Okorocha as governor. Judging from past NASS actions, its members who think refreshingly differently and talk about salaries etc., get hauled before some NASS Internal Disciplinary Committee. A strong punishment for free speech and pro-Nigerian but ‘breach of the NASS Code’ of silence, against dissenting voices also called anti-NASS activities. Dissenters among NASS members are quickly silenced and even internally prosecuted with suspensions for 180 working days, effectively one calendar year suspension and abandonment of responsibility to represent the voters who supposedly ‘elected’ the individual. Catastrophe!
Unfortunately, NASS presents itself to Nigeria as an almighty and independent political party uniting its members against externally recommended change. Are their actions and earnings against Nigeria, to extract as much as ‘legally manipulation will allow? They are both judge and jury in their affairs. If a serving NASS acts against natural justice, is that not anti-Nigerian activity?
Ask yourself: What is anti-NASS activity? Is it protecting Nigerian society from the manifest excesses of politicians?
That Nigeria’s NASS has mutated at every political opportunity into the oppressor similar to the military era into a financially ‘spoilt child’ and a bloated blight on Nigeria’s political landscape and consumed by the disease ‘Political Consumption’ consuming a disproportionate percentage of the budget is not in dispute. Just compare it to any other country worldwide. Which slimming diet to apply is the problem as the patient, NASS, must sign its own prescription, death warrant, to shed financial and numerical weight for Nigeria to even be respected as a serious nation and even to survive. For years almost 80% of people I speak to want a reduction to ‘One NASS House’, preferably the House of Representatives with at best one or at worst two representatives per state, 37-74 in all, with ‘Part Time Sitting Allowances’ refundable verifiable travel expenses all to minimize abuse of Salaries and Perks, SAP. My personal recommendation is that members are fully funded by the electing state of origin.
But inexplicably, and in my personal non-legal opinion, an abuse of their constitutional powers, NASS usually takes over the budget and approves huge amendments. The immediate past 8th NASS disgracefully withdrew a government approved N150b for the completion of the Lagos- Ibadan expressway in 2018 and diverted it to constitutional projects for the 8the NASS membership to feed off. NASS should not have such powers the abuse of which has added untold 6-10 hours of extra hardship to millions of expressway commuters for an extra year. The 8th NASS members should beg Nigerians for forgiveness and apologise to current expressway travellers! The 9th NASS should not change the budget, just tweak it. Nigerians demand a January to December fiscal year.
Hurray, the budget is being submitted so that the NASS can deliberate and come up with a consensus or compromise budget. It must as a matter of NASS efficiency and honour recalibrate the budget year to Jan-Dec cancelling the corruption of time by stubborn past NASS for reasons well known.
One budget burning issue is the ‘Maradi Railway Affair’. Nigeria once gave electricity to neighbouring countries while Nigeria denied its citizens electric power. Is the story to repeat itself? No to ‘others first’! How can Nigeria use borrowed funds to build a 55km railway line into a foreign country – to Maradi in Niger Republic? According to the ECOWAS map, Maradi is not in Nigeria!! Daura is not in Niger Republic!!! Not yet at any rate. Nigerian cartographers, mapmakers, please confirm. Is Nigeria annexing Niger Republic or is Daura to be annexed by Niger Republic? What are we exporting or is it to import foreigners from Niger Republic? No!!! There are 100 places in Nigeria requiring 55km of railways. Railway charity is never done cross-border. Railway charity must begin at home for now. NASS and public opinion should stop this till Nigeria has railways to everywhere. Railways were suppressed by the same military policy in favour of a trailer industry.
Our leaders have always explained why Nigeria is ‘Not Yet Great Again’. We know it was due to the past and present CINS -Corruption, Incompetence, Negligence and Selfishness of politicians, contractors and civil servants as well as unitary and lopsided governance destroying true federalism. Instead, governments served themselves the funds diverted from citizens’ infrastructure and social services. Governments disseminated misinformation, fake news and hanged. They re-branded ‘basic human rights’ as ‘Social Amenities’ and even worse ‘Dividends of Democracy’ suggesting to the citizen that books and electricity, are unimaginably wonderful gifts above the normal functions of governments. When ‘delivered’ they are criminally paraded as great media events, favours and huge achievements of governments. Worse still, government agents personalise distribution of such people’s property ‘governor’s or senator’s benevolence’ or ‘a governor’s wife’s personal gifts’. This must stop.
Governors, tell the truth – ‘On behalf of the state, I make this available…….’.
What will change in 2020 when we will be [email protected]? Electricity 60,000Mw???