Nigeria President’s Evils: It’s Time for the US to Stop Its Indefinite Support to the Tyrant’s Rule

Nigerians continue to live in misery under the tyrannical regime of Muhammdu Buhari, who continues oppressing not only the rival political parties but also the general public.

Buhari’s reluctance to introduce electoral reforms in the country decries that he is ready to rig the next election for his right-hand man Bola Ahmed Tinubu in 2023.

Although Tinubu disagreed with the incumbent in the past, some recent events have shown that both of them are the different sides of the same coin.

Tinubu is considered the top candidate for the ruling All Progressives Congress and is likely to replace Buhari in the 2023 elections, as the latter is term-limited.

Recently Buhari visited Tinubu in London, giving the relations between the two a much-needed boost for the ruling elite. Tinubu praised the president, saying that his visit shows he is a “caring president.” The meeting brought Tinubu and Buhari on the same page, for which Buhari is conspiring now to bring Tinubu in power.

A man who won elections based on the popular narrative of eradicating corruption, healing the economy, and tackling various persisting insecurities has failed to live up to his promises even after six years since seizing power.

Nigeria President's Evils: It's Time for the US to Stop Its Indefinite Support to the Tyrant's Rule

Muhammadu Buhari: A Former Military General Continues Behaving Like a Dictator

Being a former army general, he continues behaving like the same, despite becoming the elected, at least in theory, leader of the country.

His elections that were followed by the abduction of nearly 200 girls by an extremist organization are supposedly rigged to its core.

At the time of his inauguration, he vowed to tackle the insurgency of Boko Haram and neutralize the organization within three months to reclaim all the territories back from the insurgent group.

The promise made in 2015 has yet to be materialized. In fact, the violence in Nigeria has increased during the tyrant rule of Buhari, as almost every region of Nigeria is under violence that has made the living conditions worse in the African nation.

Due to this violence, the Global Terrorism Index declared Nigeria as the third-worst nation impacted by terrorism in 2019.

But the violence is not limited to political purposes only. Under Buhari’s rule, Nigerian police have failed to deliver to the general public; thus, street crimes have increased significantly, including kidnapping and banditry.

This has prompted the civil society to call for the president’s resignation, who has failed to bring peace to Nigeria’s environment.

Nigeria President's Evils: It's Time for the US to Stop Its Indefinite Support to the Tyrant's Rule

Nigerians are Tired and Fed up with Buhari

The voices from inside Nigeria are loud regarding the wrongdoings of the president. For instance, Wole Soyinka, the Nobel laureate, called the country a war zone, while some other political stalwarts have labeled the nation the worst place to live.

When he seized power in 2015, Buhari’s government did make some gains in neutralizing Boko Haram.

He empowered the military by increasing their budget and signing the deal to buy arms for the army. He even tried to increase the military presence in Maiduguri, which is the epicenter of Boko Haram.

These measures helped the country in regaining some of the lost territories; however, those gains were short-lived. Buhari started celebrating too early, claiming to give “technical defeat” to the terror organization. Buhari tried to be in the good books of the general public, resulting in the terror organization gaining ground once again.

Henceforth, a new group under the name of Islamic State of West Africa (ISIS-WA) emerged on the scene as an affiliate of ISIS in Africa, giving the nation much to worry about,

 

Buhari Preferred Living Abroad when Nigeria was Burning

While Nigeria kept on burning, Buhari had no interest in the internal affairs of the country. As the president, he kept visiting foreign countries for his so-called medical treatment, while Nigeria was left unattended. This gave the terror organizations breathing space, as they saw the lack of leadership at the national level.

After assuming the presidency, Bughari went to the UK on a medical trip, which kicked off his journey of such trips worldwide. Thus, in 2017 alone, he spent more than 150 days abroad for the treatment of the disease that is yet to be revealed.

Reportedly, the president spent more than eight months outside Nigeria in his first two years of office, which contributed to worsening the crisis.

When he started spending this much time outside the country, the conspiracy theories prevailed about the reality of the matter, as his office never disclosed his disease.

Meanwhile, Boko Haram continued re-establishing its authority all over the country by attacking the military and capturing their machinery to use it against the country.

The wave of terror against the military killed thousands of soldiers in the attacks, putting a question mark on Buhari’s claim that he defeated Boko Haram.

Nigeria President's Evils: It's Time for the US to Stop Its Indefinite Support to the Tyrant's Rule

Corruption: The Sole Motive of Buhari’s Presidency

The Nigerian military often decries against the lack of modern-day equipment to fight the terror group. This has increased the country’s defense budget over time, yet with little to no improvement in practice. This was occurring even before Buhari’s inauguration in 2015.

While N920 billion were allocated to the military in 2011 and N924 in 2012, this budget was increased to N934 billion in 2015.

Although the military budget stood at roughly 0.5 percent of the GDP during the timeframe of 2008 to 2020, in 2020, it took a significant jump when it was increased to 0.63 percent. Contrary to the budget, no significant improvement was seen in controlling the law and order situation in the country.

The data of the military spending and the insurgency control is inconsistent to its core. And corruption amounts to this mismatch.

With no rigorous checks and balances, most of the money goes into the personal accounts of high=profile generals while the ground situation remains poor.

The same is the case with the police, which continues to be a corrupt institute, thus contributing to the increasing crimes.

Buhari has already asked the United States for help against Boko Haram’s violence. Speaking to the Secretary of State Antony Blinken, he noted that the US should relocate the US Africa command’s headquarters from Germany to Africa in order to have smooth operations to bring stability to the continent.

 

US Must Intervene to Hold Buhari Accountable

While the US can do it in order to be physically present in the continent, Nigeria must be brought to justice.

The government’s failure in tackling Boko Haram should be considered a human rights violation by the global watchdogs; thus, Nigeria should be sanctioned for the same.

The US should offer help to the war-torn country to create an authority to tackle corruption in Nigeria so that the Nigerian military can have use of all the money allocated to it.

Only a third-party audit of the Nigerian military can help the country get back on track and fight the imminent violence and insecurity that has been penetrated the country to its core.

 

Final Thoughts

Nigerian election fraud is one of the primary reasons for the current mess in the country.

With the deadline looming over his head, Buhari is yet to sign an electoral bill that will allow the electronic transmission of election results between the relevant authorities.

This raises alarms about Buhari’s ambitions to support his party’s candidate in 2023. By protecting the interests of the powerful groups, he wants his party to come into power once again in 2023, with no systematic improvements.

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