MURTALLABIAN TENDENCY

By Michael Egbejumi-David

12/20/2011 9:37:45 AM -

Also known as dangerous incompetence. We were bequeathed this phenomenon of course by that our brother, Umar Farouk Abdul-Mutallab. Sometime in 2008/09, Farouk, well into his twenties, developed a taste for baby diapers. Eventually, on Christmas day 2009, he donned a Yemeni-made one. Then he got on a US-bound flight, put an airline blanket over his head, put his face in his laps, said his prayers, pulled a Maiduguri-made trigger and blew his balls off directly into his own face. The mumu boy also managed to completely singe and permanently make bald his pubic region. Faced with this large calamitous calamity, the brother quickly came to the only conclusion he could come to. He realised then that afterlife can wait. I mean, what can a timid man do with all those eager virgins in the sky with a damaged blokos? So Murtallab gave himself up. It was a display of a most aggravated incompetence.

Some of our more visible practitioners of Murtallabian tendency were Michael Aandoakaa, George W Bush Jr., Mussolini of Italy, that Pastor with a PhD in how to slap church attendees, Oyedepo…or whatever his name is, and Late Umaru Yar'Adua. In fact, Yar'Adua elevated dangerous incompetence to an all time high in the history of low performing leadership. His incompetence would have been laughable were it not for how it dangerously set Nigeria back in ALL areas of our national life. For a while there, Nigeria was in the firm grip of his provincial and colourless mafia clumsily marshalled by his stroppy and unsmiling wife, Turai. For those who believe in reincarnation, I think Lady Macbeth breezed through here. As she swept through, she collected a lot of balls with her: Yar'Adua's, Andoakaa's, Segun Adeniyi's, etc, etc.

But now, unfortunately, our Jonathan is on his knees, arms raised, pounding hard on the Murtallabian door asking to be let in.

I guess for most folks, the first hint of President Jonathan's Murtallabian tendency was the utterly inept manner he allowed the last presidential election to be unnecessarily and gauchely rigged in the South East and South South regions of the country. From that point on, it's been one bumbling step right after the other, I'm afraid.

As soon as he was sworn into office as President proper, this man studied all the problems besetting the country and decided that a single term of six or however long years for the Executives was the solution.

After being rightly shot down on that score, he took advice and decided that he would remove the non-existent subsidy on petroleum products in the country. For those who truly want to understand this oil subsidy issue in greater details, I will strongly suggest reading the very well-informed and well-written article “The Real Cost Of Nigeria Petrol” by Dr Izielen Agbon. Suffice it to say that as most insiders know and as pointed out by Dr Agbon, when the real barrel cost, the refining cost and the distribution costs are all factored-in, the pump price of petrol in Nigeria should be $35.7 per barrel, or, N33.36 per litre. Currently, the official price is N65. So where is the subsidy Jonathan and his officials keep talking about?

From next year, with the removal of their fictional subsidy, the pump price of petrol and other petroleum products will probably double. I have heard N120 per litre mentioned recently. Apart from the fact that as an oil-producing country our citizens should benefit from REAL petroleum products' subsidy, Nigeria is actually a country and an economy that is run largely on petrol, diesel and kerosene. The cost of doing business here will become even more prohibitive than it has been for the past three decades. Many small businesses and medium firms will simply not be able to cope. This is coming at a time when it is being reported that our biggest power station, Egbin Power Plant has lapsed into epileptic performance. Just doesn't make sense, does it?

Jonathan's handling of the economy so far, and his proposed budget firmly indicates that we are back to pleasing only the World Bank and its Western neo-Capitalist Financial precepts at a time when those very tools are mercilessly sinking whole economies across Europe and elsewhere.

When he had to present that proposed budget to the National Assembly, the place had to be virtually locked down. This was also the norm at the few places Jonathan had dared to show his face for fear of insecurity.

Insecurity in Nigeria has become the norm and the accepted way of life now the way Babangida made bribery and corruption acceptable in the eighties and early nineties. We won't even talk about how Boko Haram quickly pocketed Jonathan and has effectively turned his presidency to a hijab-wearing one. A presidency that has more or less gone underground, operating in a guerrilla fashion. Similarly, we would have to overlook how kidnapping has been left totally unchallenged in the South East and South South to rise to such prominence that even armed robbers are having to retrain to join the kidnapping trade.

In June 2010, after the Super Eagles crashed and burned at the FIFA World Cup due to the Murtallabian tendencies of one Lars Lagerback and Sani Kaita, Jonathan promptly imposed a two-year international ban on the team! Eh? We would have missed out on the qualifications for the next edition beginning from 2012. And how do you groom and access young prospects? It is called biting off one's nose to spite the face. Thank God for FIFA that came down hard on Jonathan and threatened us with expulsion before that ridiculous ban was rescinded.

It was also Jonathan who created history as the first Chief Executive not to celebrate our Independence Day in our relatively short history as a nation. The recent National Merit Award event was a most humiliating spectacle. Lack of medals; lack of everything. All we do now is talk and focus on irrelevant matters such as God is our pilot, non attributes of Pharaohs and Goliath, Gay Rights Bill and other claptraps.

Everything seems to have taken a frightful turn in Nigeria. Even the Police that are supposed to serve and protect ordinary citizens rather have the country in a protracted headlock. The Judiciary? Ah! Everything seems funny and things are not working right.

Looks like we're in trouble again o. It is looking like, in Jonathan, we have a Murtallabian-president on our hands who is content to lead from the back. And, I don't know, but the energy, the whole essence of Nigeria just seems to be fizzling out under this man's watch…

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