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11-point agenda: Little movement, no motion

The administration of Arch. Namadi Sambo of Kaduna state is about 34 months old, which represent about 70.83% of the 48 months to be spent…

The administration of Arch. Namadi Sambo of Kaduna state is about 34 months old, which represent about 70.83% of the 48 months to be spent by it in office. No doubt, this justifies the uneasiness of many critics in the state about the progress so far made, if any, vis-à-vis the 11-point agenda of the administration. Time is forever neutral, and moving at a fixed rate, whether the government uses it to the betterment of the masses or squandered it in propagating a not-too-real agenda, the essence of which is only understood by the governor’s kitchen cabinet.

Furthermore, it is worrisome the rate at which youths, who ought to be the future of our collective development, are fast becoming sycophantic tools in the hands of politicians.

To begin with, as a youth, this author is saddened whenever one comes across article written by youth’s association misrepresenting facts and existing realities probably to curry favor from those in positions of authority. Recently, an association that calls itself Arewa Youth Mobilization claimed through a write-up by its vice-president that “under Governor Sambo’s administration the government of Kaduna State is also providing free uniforms at primary school level, free books…”  Indeed the association is entitled to its opinion, no matter how dogmatic, but nobody is entitled to his/her facts. Facts must be subject to investigation by the public. That statement at its best is a fallacy for it implied a continuous process. The truth is that this much talked about free distribution of uniforms and books was done only once and in the formative months of this administration. To be charitable to the government, maybe provision was made for its continuity but the reality is that it has not been continued. Youths don’t have to descend so low in spite of harsh economic conditions. Needless to say poverty!

Top on the Namadi’s 11-point agenda is security. No doubt even a blind man can attest to the presence of Operation Yaki, a security outfit in the state. Sometime ago, in a programme on Radio Nigeria, Kaduna sponsored by the state government, a government official was asked to list the successes of the Namadi’s administration that can feature prominently on the administration’s scorecard. Interestingly, the man gleefully started with security all the way through and ended with security. It was just a mere rhetoric, for there was little to say. Sometime ago, the Kaduna State Secretary to the State Government was kidnapped and somewhere in Zaria, a business tycoon was abducted. Equally, foreigners are not safe, for a Canadian woman escaped being kidnapped barely by the whiskers.

Another item that featured conspicuously in the 11-point agenda is poverty alleviation. So much had been said and written about this item of the agenda. Probably due to public outcry, the administration of Namadi Sambo had decided to be paying five beneficiaries from each district every month from the data collection exercise conducted in 2008, starting from December 2009. Curiously however, the would-be beneficiaries are being informed through text message. Rural dwellers are on their own! Come to think of it, it means that only some selected 50 persons would benefit from that “sampling” per district by September 2010. The suaveness of this administration is totally unfathomable, just as its covert ways of doing things is unacceptable.

Critical to our mind is the welfare of all workers and pensioners. This featured glaringly in the 11-point agenda. But perhaps what welfare package means to the government of the state is quite different from what mere mortals assumed it to be. The government is confusing computer loan to its workers with welfare of the labor force. The compute loan is aimed at improving productivity, which is output, whereas welfare is concerned with the well-being of workers, which is the input. By poor input in terms of welfare package, one doesn’t have to go far to determine the nature of output, probably next to substandard.

A visit to a nearby primary school reveals overcrowded classrooms where students received instructions sitting on bare floors and classrooms with dilapidated ceilings and roofs with no instructional materials.

 Gigantic billboards always greets the arrival of our desperate pregnant women and nursing mothers into hospitals, however, they are sent back home with about N80 or N100 worth of drugs. Essentials drugs are never provided although the government claimed to have invested huge resources on it.

 The governor might mean well for the citizens but his channel of implementation and supervision are very porous and ineffective.

A government is judged not by the color of its political party, but by the content of its programmes. Finally, as the administration is jostling for a second term with its daramdamdam slogan, if you put all the billboards, media hype of the 11-point agenda and the projects executed and juxtapose it with prevailing realities, it is tantamount to little movement, no motion nay no appreciable progress.

 Isah wrote from, 1, Kwaru Ajilo close, Off majalisa Badarawa,[email protected]

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