Four Great Enemies Buhari Must Terminate After Being Sworn In Friday

Muhammadu Buhari is sworn in as Nigeria’s next president on Friday but
he has a daunting to-do list after promising wholesale change during
elections two months ago.
Here are four key areas, otherwise termed enemies of his successful administration he will have to tackle when he
takes office:

– Corruption –
Buhari, 72, has said
the corrupt and corruption will have no place in his administration,
sparking fears of a wide-ranging crackdown similar to his previous time
as military ruler in the 1980s. But he has pledged outgoing President
Goodluck Jonathan has “nothing to fear” and there will be no witch-hunt
against the former administration.

Some areas are likely to be
too big to ignore, however, such as the running of the opaque, state-run
oil firm, which is seen as riddled with corruption. Analysts predict
Buhari will beef up existing anti-corruption agencies, while he has
personally promised to declare his assets and liabilities for greater
transparency and accountability.

Buhari’s All Progressives
Congress (APC) estimates it could save three trillion naira ($15
billion, 13 billion euros) by streamlining government and plugging
“leakages” in the system.

– Security –

administration will be remembered for the rise of Boko Haram Islamists,
who left least 15,000 people dead and more than 1.5 million homeless in a
six-year campaign of violence. Boko Haram is currently seen as on the
run but security experts say the war is far from over, with sporadic
attacks continuing and the likelihood the rebels could regroup in border

Former army general Buhari has recognised the need for
top-down reform to boost poor morale and end graft that hit military
procurement, leaving troops ill-equipped to fight. But restructuring
also needs to go hand-in-hand with social and economic programmes to
tackle the root causes of the insurgency, namely lack of development and
unemployment in the Muslim north.

Buhari has indicated he will
maintain regional cooperation with Chad, Niger and Cameroon but he faces
potential trouble on another front from former militants in the
oil-producing southern Delta. Rebels wanting a fairer share of oil
wealth have threatened to resume their activities against energy
facilities in the region if a government amnesty programme is not
extended beyond this year.

– Unemployment –

two-thirds of Nigeria’s population of more than 170 million is under 30.
But unemployment is currently nudging 30 percent, despite strong
overall rates of economic growth in recent years. Outgoing Finance
Minister Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala in 2013 recognised the benefits of growth
needed to be shared more equitably. The APC says some 110 million people
still live in poverty.

Buhari’s administration has pledged to
embark on a massive programme of industrialisation, including building
railways, improving roads and ports, and improving crumbling
infrastructure. But those programmes could be hamstrung immediately by
lack of funds, with Nigeria hit hard by the slump in the global price of
oil, on which it depends for 90 percent of foreign income.

say diversifying the economy is a must, as is educational reform to
improve skills. Some 10.5 million Nigerian children are currently out of
school — the most in the world.

– Energy –

Friday, the government said Nigeria was producing just 1,327 megawatts
of electricity — an all-time low and down even on Buhari’s last time in
power in 1983-85. Reversing the country’s crippling power deficit is
seen as key to driving economic growth but has evaded successive
governments because of mismanagement, incompetence and vested interests.

is expected to decentralise, deregulate and privatise the transmission
sector, opening it up to competition. The APC has reportedly promised to
triple generation to 12,000 MW by 2019. He will also have to address
the oil and gas sector and controversial subsidies paid to fuel
importers who bring in petroleum products because of a lack of
functioning refineries.

The government’s alleged non-payment of
arrears saw fuel supply lines shut down in recent weeks, causing a
crippling shortage that brought Nigeria to a near standstill.

culled from Vanguard!

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