by Yusuf Ishaku Goje
Kaduna, lets make 2023 general elections count this time around. It should not be about party, but ideas. It should not be about personality, but purpose. It should not be about generosity, but vision. It should not be about smear campaign, but understanding of issues and the solutions. It should not be about cheap primordial sentiments, but competence. It should not be about god-fathers, but credibility. It should not be about reminding us of the destruction of the past, but the future the aspirants/candidates want to build.
They should not only tell us what this current administration is doing badly, rather tell us what better alternative they are bringing to the table. If they complain about the huge debt, what alternative public financing mechanism – in the face of dwindling revenue and surging population growth – are they proposing? If they complain about the mass sack, what will they do differently to increase the quantity, quality and efficiency of public servants at the same time reduce cost of governance?
If they think the State is being privatized by those in-charge, what are they bringing to the table that will be different – to ensure they, their aides/cronies and family members do not do same? If they argue that development is one-sided, let them tell us the reforms they are bringing on board to ensure equity in terms of fairness in the distribution of development? If they criticize the current administration for not having human face, they should tell us how they will bring development without it affecting sections of the residents negatively?
As they criticize ongoing reforms – in public financial management, policy and strategy, public service management and monitoring and evaluation – as not translating to improved service delivery; please let them tell us what better alternative reform initiatives they will bring on board. In doing so, they should not forget to tell us how they will address the rising poverty rate currently at 43.48% and unemployment/underemployment at 67.00% – likewise how they will meet the projected job creation target of 277,773.
While telling us they will do roads, schools, hospital etc; we will be eagerly waiting to hear how they will finance and execute it with emphasis on quality and value for money. As they cast aspersions on the current administration for poor handling of the ongoing insecurity, they should not forget to tell us the magic wand they will be bringing to address the dynamic and ever evolving nature of insecurity. Also, they should not forget to tell us how they will confront the vested interests, who will reject, likely sabotage, most of their pro-people ideas – because they are only after self-enrichment and aggregating political power.
We are no longer interested in being reminded about the problems or fixation on criticizing the current administration as a leverage to get power, they should tell us the pragmatic solutions they are bringing on board – and how they will surmount the giguantum obstacles to effectively execute the solutions to the benefit of the generality of residents in the State. We are not out for sweet talkers or deceptive generosity, we want people with substance and quality.
Talk is cheap, promises can be broken; so we demand for better not the usual empty rhetoric and deceptive generosity. We are waiting for the aspirants/candidates, this time around they have plenty of questions to answer.
Lets engage, ask the right questions and hold the government accountable.