What is wrong with Jonathan?

2010-03-05
THE GUARDIAN Newspaper- Patience Williams

WHAT is wrong with Goodluck Jonathan? Now that he has finally and officially been acknowledged as acting president he is not taking charge. What is the difference between an absent Yar'Adua and Jonathan as acting president? Nothing. We still have what is being called a vacuum for proxy, because it is like the acting president is not there. The National Assembly has given the acting president full support to take control and drive the country in the right direction. The governor's forum, the Federal Executive Council and civil society have all cheered him on. The whole world has said YES you can Mr. acting President. What more does Jonathan need? I guess it takes more than good luck and patience to run a country.

Somebody please tell me, how two army units, the 4th battalion and guards brigade, 300 selected officers and 25 vehicles were deployed in the middle of the night with weapons released to them to go and pick up Mr. President without his right hand man the present Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces of Nigeria knowing about it? Is this true? Did Jonathan not really know that Mr. President was coming back into the country? Who deployed these troops? Is it possible that the Chief of Defence Staff or the Chief of Army staff or the National Security Adviser deployed these troops in the middle of the night to go and pick up Mr. President without his acting presidents' knowledge? Please tell me these are all lies, fabricated by the media to sell papers. If these stories have any sense of truth to them, why have these men not been fired yet and charged with treason? If these stories have any sense of truth to them we need to sit back and really deal with the real issue.

Is it really true that Jonathan has not been given access to see Mr. President? Is it true that Jonathan is communicating with Mr. President through his wife, Turai Yar'Adua? Is it true that Turai deployed two members of the Brigade of Guards to barricade the "presidential seat"? Is it true that she sent State Security Services to ransack Jonathan's office? Are all these stories really true? Why has Jonathan not arrested the First Lady for kidnapping the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria? Have people forgotten that Yar'Adua belongs to Nigeria and Nigerians have the right to see their president, and if Turai is preventing this from happening then Jonathan as the present commander-in-chief of the Federal Republic of Nigeria should have her arrested and charged. What is wrong with Jonathan? Is this all a political game that he is playing? Or is he really unable to lead?

What is even more confusing is how most of these reports and stories are proudly coming out of the acting president's office. Do they realise that they are actually telling us that the acting president is incompetent and unable to lead and protect this country? Do they actually realise that they are causing confusion and anarchy? Do they realise that they are actually telling us that we cannot trust our acting president? Do they realise that they are actually telling us that our acting president does not know what is going on in his own country? If the acting president does not know what is going on, how will we ever know?

When I hear and read all these stories, panic strikes me. The realisation is that the citizens of this country are not safe. The events that have taken place in the last few days are a clear picture of how unsafe we are in Nigeria. In all of this drama and locomotion of troops being deployed in the middle of the night and given weapons without the acting president's knowledge, we are losing sight of the real issue here. What is the real issue? The real issue here is who will lead us, because it is evident that Jonathan cannot. How can the acting president not be aware of the events happening in his office? Everyone is blaming Turai Yar'Adua and focusing on her. Turai Yar'Adua is not the issue. Our issue is Jonathan and his inability to lead and protect us as he should. The only thing that Turai Yar'Adua has done is to reveal to us that Nigeria quickly needs a president and that Goodluck Jonathan is not the man for the job. So, what do we do now? Do we choose another acting President?

 

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