Cognitive Therapy For Buhari’s Traducers 2 | Independent Newspapers Limited
Newsletter subscribe

Columnists, Uncle Sam's VOICE

Cognitive Therapy For Buhari’s Traducers 2

Posted: Jul 30, 2015 at 2:15 am   /   by   /   comments (0)

DA: I am surprised to hear people like you, who never gave Jonathan any chance, being this positive-minded about Buhari who, from the word go, has shown obvious bias for his people –with his appointments.

US: Look, Buhari is a General who knows the limits of divide and rule. He knows that he needs a united Nigeria for him to cast his name in the history of the country. He may have human failings, but I see in him a leader who would not sacrifice long term and enduring goals for transient present gains. He has experienced the worst in human nature and thus knows why he should not send any part of this country to the trenches. He is a beneficiary of shared commonalities and concerted efforts. His presidency is a direct result of a confluence of divided coalitions and, as such, must be a good student of win-win solutions. But for deciding to join forces with other coalitions, his dream of becoming the president of this great country would still have remained in the proverbial pipeline.

DA: I’m still not sure you’re not just cleverly explaining away Buhari’s tendencies of promoting a northern agenda. Already, some of his close northern friends are exhibiting an air of superiority, betraying some ingrained belief that it is their turn, and that they intend to make very good use of it this time around.

US:  You do not seem to get my point. If I must spell it out, Buhari is a good leader, and, as such, will avoid the banana peels that litter Aso Rock.  I may not be certain that bad leaders are born, but I am absolutely certain that it takes a lot of efforts to make a good leader. Buhari is disciplined and guarded in his utterances and promises to Nigerians. Unlike Jonathan who, from the word go, had a class of people whom he could not hide his personal hatred for, the only people I’m sure may not be in Buhari’s good books are those who would not want to forgo corruption. Since that class of people is caught and encircled by an objective standard, I make bold to say Mr. President is, for now, the president of each and every Nigerian national and citizen.

Yes, psychologists have identified many tricks with which bad leaders manipulate and keep the people subservient to their whims and caprices.  One of such is the divide and rule tactic. By this, the bad leader selects a group from among the populace and makes them believe that they are the good ones whilst the rest are the bad guys. Being the good guys, they will always be right in all they think and do, whilst the others will always be wrong. The good guys must always be on their guard as there will never be anything good coming from the camp of the bad guys. The good guys are thereby put in a constant state of war, because, to avert war one must be prepared for war. That bond of solidarity against the evil empire or axis of evil on the other side ensconces and gives the bad leader temporary comfort and sense of invincibility.

As a General, it will be a great tragedy for Buhari to divide his troops into those for him and those against him. So, I refuse to be lured into drawing absolute conclusions from the infinitesimal appointments he has made.

DA: I will be amazed if there are many other people out there who would consider appointments into such sensitive and powerful positions as the service chiefs as inconsequential when those offices symbolize the might of the state. When you consider that the entire Southeast is completely left out, then you will know how deliberate Mr. President is in his appointments.

US: I admit that the omission of the Southeast in the appointment of service chiefs is not entirely excusable. Mr. President and his team will have to work hard to win the confidence of southeasterners that they are not being paid back for rejecting him at the polls. Jonathan’s administration had broken the jinx and had admitted the southeast into the elite club of equals in the armed forces and my expectation is for continuity in that respect. But I know that unless a President wants to do harm to the country’s armed forces, the appointment of service chiefs should be based on seniority. And for critical situations such as the one we are experiencing now, competence and reliability should not be sacrificed on the pale of regional balance. That is why I’d buy the rationale behind the Northeast having two slots. The Northeast is easily the most vulnerable part of Nigeria today and it makes sense to give their children in the armed forces more responsibility in the fight to restore normalcy in that region. If their children fail them, then they would have no basis to blame the rest of Nigeria.

I will in any case defer to Mr. President when he said “I have replaced the heads of Nigeria’s army, navy and air force. Our new military leadership has not been chosen because of their familiarity with those in government, as was too often the case in the past, but on their track records and qualifications alone.

These new military leaders will be based in Borno State in northern Nigeria, where the headquarters of the armed services has been relocated. This shift of resources and command directly to the front line, in addition to the replacement of the head of the State Security Service, Nigeria’s intelligence organization, and a new emphasis on working in partnership with our neighbors, has equipped us to take the fight directly to Boko Haram.”