Many Nigerians and concerned Africans around the world have expressed displeasure at the attitude of the country’s president yesterday after he was sworn into office for a second term.
It is a known tradition worldwide for presidents and political leaders to give an inauguration speech but President Muhammadu Buhari broke protocol and tradition yesterday when he walked away from Eagle Square, Abuja – the venue of the swearing-in without delivering a speech.
From the moment he walked into the venue of the inauguration, it was obvious that many of the Nigerians in attendance did not want his as their president. Perhaps that was one of the reasons he decided not to deliver a speech.
He had inspected the parade comprising officers of the Army, Navy, Air Force, and Police; but would agree that it was devoid of the usual cheers and excitement from onlookers as is often experienced in such events.
You will recall that the president came into office four years earlier, after winning the 2015 elections against the incumbent president, Goodluck Ebele Jonathan. The atmosphere then was very different from what he expected yesterday. And this is something critics say is as a result of the president not delivering on the campaign promises he made four years ago.
In defending the actions, the country’s Minister of Information, Lai Mohammed had said that the event will be a low-key one because some events have been scheduled for June 12, the new Democracy Day.
"Since the first observance of June 12 as Democracy Day falls into an election year, and as a measure to sustain June 12 as Democracy Day, the celebration of the inauguration and the advancement of democracy in the country would now hold on June 12," he said.
Is it possible that the president moved his inauguration speech to June 12, the new Democracy Day? How interesting!
As expected, the opposition party, the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) has said the actions show that the elections which brought the president into power were rigged.
"The failure by President Buhari and the All Progressives Congress (APC) to make any commitment at the ceremony reinforces the truism that a product of flawed electoral process cannot serve the people or meet their aspirations under a constitutional democracy," the party said in a statement by its national publicity secretary, Kola Ologbondiyan.
It noted that the "poor attendance and passivity of the audience at the ceremony at a time that Nigerians were trooping, in their millions, to the inauguration of state governors elected on the platform of the PDP is further evidence that Buhari and the APC were not elected.
"It is indeed pathetic that at a ceremony such as presidential inauguration, where truly elected leaders address their people, make commitments and unfold their governance direction, President Buhari did not showcase his plans or commitment to the development of critical sectors of our polity. It also speaks volumes that President Buhari had nothing to say to the victims of mindless killings and acts of violence in various parts of our country."
What are your thoughts?
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