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  • Saturday, June 22, 2024
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Another year begins for President Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s administration

Today is May 29, and it is President Tinubu’s one year in office. It may be too early to request that all he promised be delivered already; however, the following requires answers:

  1. Has this administration shown accountability and transparency? The citizenry often demands that the government be accountable to the people and transparent in its decision-making processes, especially on major issues.
  2. Delivery of public services: Healthcare, education, infrastructure, power, public safety—the list goes on. Has this been efficiently attended to? Let’s take it one after the other. The Nigerian health care system is in dire need of attention. The exodus of medical professionals signals a looming economic fiasco if nothing is done to encourage retainance. Primary Health Centres that should be the first point of contact for minor health issues are almost a shadow of themselves. Also, a lot needs to be done with our surveillance systems so we can quickly track communicable diseases.

“We aren’t expecting President Tinubu to wave a magic wand, but we are expecting documented progress, so we can follow through on the goal of a renewed hope!”

The educational system can be better. Sadly, according to UNICEF, about 10.5 million Nigerian children aged 5–14 years are not in school; only 61 percent of 6–11-year-olds attend primary school regularly; and only 35.6 percent of children aged 36–59 months receive early childhood education. If at the primary level these challenges are there, one can begin to imagine the numbers that will make it to secondary and then tertiary. They struggle to pull through, graduate from the university, and sadly, there are no jobs for them, even after finishing with good grades. If this administration pays enough attention to the sector, it will reflect positively in most areas of the country.

On infrastructure, there have been allocations for various projects. If the government can follow through to ensure those who receive contracts carry out their expected deliverables and enforce consequences for non-compliance, the citizenry’s hope in the government will be rekindled.

Power is another area where Nigeria hasn’t really done well. The price paid for electricity is high. The salary of the average Nigerian isn’t sufficient to feed them, not to mention accommodating the cost of electricity. The NLC is still on the basic salary matter, going back and forth with the government, with an agreement still in view. Like someone said, “Is it not the person who has enough to feed that will think of paying for electricity?

Interestingly, the federal government, through the Minister of Power, has said Nigeria is going to generate 6,000 megawatts of electricity before the end of 2024. We are currently between 4000 and 4500 MW. At over 200 million citizens, we need more.

For any economy to prosper, the government must show the ability to foster growth, create jobs, and improve the overall standard of living.

Their social welfare must not be ignored. There must be policies that address poverty and inequality and support all, even the most vulnerable segments of the population.

Nigeria has great potential. For instance, our goldmine can be the entertainment industry if properly harnessed. Our music has gone global, and our movies and actors are gaining even more international recognition and coverage. If they are all doing this without the government’s support, one can begin to imagine what will happen if the government comes in fully.

Food and insecurity are other matters of concern. We need more to be done in the agricultural sector. We have focused on oil for so long. Nigeria is blessed with crops like rice, sesame, cashew nuts, cassava, cocoa beans, groundnuts, gum arabic, kolanut, cocoa, and maize, to mention a few. Farmers need support for production so there can be food. Take fish, for instance, according to WorldFish, fish account for around 40 percent of Nigeria’s protein intake, with fish consumption at 13.3 kg per person per year. That area calls for more investment.

On insecurity, this administration must show that the lives of Nigerians matter. We need to take insecurity more seriously. Homes are in tears; many have been kidnapped, and others have died. There must be consequences for perpetrators of such heinous crimes, so it serves as a deterrent to others.

President Tinubu is one year in office today, and the truth is that most of the challenges mentioned above have been in existence before this present administration. Truly so, however, the citizens expect that a solution to these challenges must be on the front burner. We want to see that even though these challenges were there before President Tinubu became president, he is showing, through his actions, that they are all of interest to him, and as such, he is working towards finding long-lasting solutions by putting the right people in the right positions who will bring the solution to fruition.

Every president wants to be remembered for how they changed the lives of the citizenry. The citizenry wants to acknowledge that their lives changed because their president made promises and fulfilled them. We aren’t expecting President Tinubu to wave a magic wand, but we are expecting documented progress so we can follow through on the goal of renewed hope! One year down, three more to go. Another year clock begins, tick says the clock, tick tick, President Tinubu, what you have to do, do quick and do well.

Kemi Ajumobi, Editor, Women’s Hub, BusinessDay Media House.

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