By Njoku SaintJerry A.
“Where there is stiff and deliberate attempt to frustrate local manufacturing industries by bureaucratic administrative policies and unhealthy environmental condition, what you get is a capital flight to regions that have put their environment in order to attract these finances and investors”
Less than 20 years ago, many African countries were dependent on Nigeria for virtually everything including security from external forces and welfare, at a time, between 2010 – 2014, Nigeria fluctuated between economic growth of 6.88% to 7.98% GDP and was even quoted as the largest economy in Africa preceding South Africa.
Like in the proverbial race of the Hare and Tortoise, Rwanda is not a match for Nigeria in any capacity, even with both limbs as week as that of the tortoise Nigeria still manages to crawl in its giant shell but that is, with so much pain, confusion and burdens. Whereas Rwanda is playing ‘catch-up’ and might serve a good example of what any country can achieve when they have a focused and conscientious leadership managing their cultural and political diversities.
What has happened to Nigeria’s economy, its image and people within such a short space of time so much that Nigerians are flooding into the city of Kigali, buying properties in hinter land to resettle in former Africa’s miserable and bloody killing field of brothers at war.
The difference is not far-fetched – good governance and bad governance – but you would be wrong to think that Rwanda has got it all perfect of a leadership persona in Mr. Paul Kagame while Nigeria has merely managed to pull a blanket over their own heads by dancing in the street of Abuja the moment President Muhammadu Buhari was declared winner of a Presidential election in 2015.
Many African countries has a fair share of bad governance and complicated political administrations and this is where Nigeria has got it all mumbled up by refusing to read in between the lines even when they found out they have made a colossal mistake in 2015 during the Presidential election, rather than collectively correct their mistakes by shutting the door to Aso Rock, Abuja to Muhammadu Buhari, they gleefully gave him the baton again in 2019 and since then, Nigeria has never known peace but chaos and decline of quality life and economy.
Between 2016 – 2021, Nigeria has had double recession and not recovering fast in any capacity. For every step taken to shorten the chaotic outcomes of various policies adopted by the President Buhari administration, it only helps to sink Africa’s most populous nation even deeper into unfortunate economic situations.
The people who manage the economy are in conflicts of what is acceptable and what is not viable, they appear completely disconnected from the society they were appointed and elected to manage with Buhari himself firmly holed in within his ethnic affinity, he appeared to care little to the conflicts of interest and opinion that has risen due to his own mismanagement of Nigeria’s diversity and natural blessings in agriculture and an active youth population.
This is where Mr. Paul Kagame of Rwanda had struck a sharp contrast to what President Muhammad Buhari is doing with Nigeria, so much that developmental analyst, business men and investors had begun to consider the Rwanda situation for a balanced economic cooperation. Nigeria loses and continue to lose unless drastic decision is taken and implemented fast.
Nigeria and supporters of the President can never, ever achieve any meaningful progress until they are able to sit down and address their differences, whether it is Fulani Cow Followers, Biafra agitators, the Yoruba nation, Middle Belt or even the confused Northern elements
Nigeria’s persistent economic problems including rising inflation rate, as well as fall in the Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) caused by the focus on United states dollars as well as a depressing crude oil prices are just few in too many vices bedeviling Africa’s weakening giant.
Where there is stiff and deliberate attempt to frustrate local manufacturing industries by bureaucratic administrative policies and unhealthy environmental condition, what you get is a capital flight to regions that have put their environment in order to attract these finances and investors who are willing and eager to establish businesses in these regions and where you have growing concerns of unemployment, poor healthcare and scary insecurity situations threatening the peace of the residents, brain drain and departure of talented individuals and professionals from that country would become a honorable choice.
It will be remarkable to note that all the indices outlined here played out in Rwanda before the emergence of Paul Kagame and worse with the genocidal ethnic cleansing of 1994, in a manner similar to the menace of the Fulani Militia codenamed ‘bandits’ threatening the peace and economy of the Nigeria nation with taciturn support of the Nigeria presidency evident in the manner of soft spot President Buhari and his admirers has been handling the situation with amnesty grants, absorbance of repentant terrorists into the military and ethnic profiling of Nigerians outside the President’s religious and ethnic affinity.
However, although Paul Kagame shares a striking resemblance with Buhari in height and physique, He was smarter by seeing ahead of his time, the strength of unity in diversity, the benefits of peaceful coexistence of peoples and neighbours and the power of Ubuntu.
All these are prime attributes of economic growth, because wise decision can only be taken when the man in leadership is at peace with himself and willing to accommodate divergent opinions in Nation building. Buhari is not at peace with himself even in old age and that is the bane of Nigeria’s confusion. You can only achieve more in peace and not in crisis.
Nigeria has never been this polarized, reminding you of events that preceded the 1966 – 1969 civil wars which Muhamad Buhari was one of its protagonists. Paul Kagame has fought his way through to bring healing to the scars of ‘hatred and ethnicity’ that led Rwanda to its ruins in 1994, because it thwarts growth of any kind and closes the doors to ideas and advancement while Buhari is bent on revisiting these sad tales of ‘hate and ethnicity’ with vigor.
Fact is; Nigeria and supporters of the President can never, ever achieve any meaningful progress until they are able to sit down and address their differences, whether it is Fulani Cow Followers, Biafra agitators, the Yoruba nation, Middle Belt or even the confused Northern elements, they will merely be locked in a vicious circle of argument upon argument leading to crisis of all categories while smaller African nations like Rwanda, Ghana, Benin, Botswana even Senegal will continue to reap from the failures of all the Nigerian technocrats, the educated, the intelligent, the clergy and the politicians to sit down and address Nigeria’s declining economic and social situations headlong.