With more than three weeks out of the three months slated for the National Conference, any hope that the conference shall point the way forward for a new Nigeria is fast disappearing. If the delegates could allocate two weeks to discuss the speech of the president of the nation, it staggers the imagination of how many weeks would be devoted to the burning problems plaguing all of us.
The reports of previous conferences are gathering dust in federal government official cabinet. The better and wise choice was for the Jonathan administration to dust up such files and find out if the recommendations of such conferences could be beneficial to our present condition.
This conference will not solve corruption in the country as some of the people attending the conference were part of the people that brought us to this ugly past. Corruption will continue to be the national symbol and the likes of Robert Mugabe shall make us butt of dirty international jokes. And if the conference cannot solve the problem of corruption, it means that this nation despite the abundant crude oil and gas wealth will continue to wear the sackcloth of poverty, with progress and development perched in the realm of imagination.
The conference will never solve the problem of lack of unity buffeting the nation. The reason is that our political elite believe in a game of delusion and dissembling. This nation is not united and the concept of a ‘Nigerian‘ is just fictional. That is why people are not sincere about the implementation of fiscal federalism despite the fact that ours is called the Federal Republic. That is why one traditional ruler could boast of moving to Cameroun and leaving the country. That is the more reason the struggle to control the presidency is very fierce. This skewed federal system needs thorough overhaul but the indications from the National Conference are that most delegates are not patriotic enough to speak the truth about fiscal federalism and resource control.
The National Conference will not be able to solve the issues of doctored and flawed elections because as it stands today, the delegates see Jonathan as doing them great favour by inviting them to Abuja. And when you add the boast of the president in Enugu recently that PDP will capture the whole of South-east, it will be delusional to contemplate for a split second that next year polls shall be free and fair.
In the governance of a nation, the key ingredients are sincerity and transparency. These are unfortunately in short supply in the Jonathan‘s administration. The circuses of political leaders around the man weave tortoise-like stories to him and goad him to believe that his transformation agenda is having the desired effects. It is the same set of people that schooled him into believing that by convoking a national conference, he will enter the history books as one of nature’s gifts to Nigeria. It is a lie that the looming failure of the National Conference shall expose.