I caught wind of the Enough-is-Enough youth march in Abuja late. From what I’ve read and seen online so far, the match did happen as planned, the group made their way into the National assembly grounds, but could not get anyone of relevance to address them. Nice and encouraging try, it was.
A video clip
Overall, I appreciate the energy and commitment of planners of the event. They are the ones in the trenches and up against the brutality of the security forces. Putting their bodies at risk and investing their time to make a case for the general well being of Nigerians is a noble task, and I doff my hat!
However, I wish the demands made could have been more potent and better conceived . Ore’s Note, a Nigerian blog reporting the event, captures the demands succinctly:
1) President Yar’Adua should resume, resign or be removed
2) The promise of 6000megawatts must be fulfilled
3) The 5-month fuel crisis needs to end now.
1. The removal/resumption/retirement of Mr. Yar’Adua is no longer critical at this stage of event in Nigeria. What is important is having in place constitutional measures that will prevent similar occurrences in the feature. Let’s deal with the issue of transparency, the root cause of the problem.
For instance, we should be asking for mandatory health screening/assessment for any political office-holder, the findings of such must be made public. The screening must be pre-appointment and yearly.
2. Asking for 6,000MW of electricity is really lame i think.
We could have asked for the establishment of regional/local/ industrial parks nationwide with 20-24 hrs of electrical power (and other necessary amnesties) where businesses can set up shop and engage in symbiotic existence. Nigeria does not need power 24-7 nationwide at this point, just guarantee power to the industrial and production centers!
3. Ending the five-month scarcity is easy, just get more ships to bring in more fuel! But this is not the solution to the problem…
Oil refinement must be done locally, and open to the private sector involvement. Three refineries are too few to handle the demands of Nigerians and her nearby neighbors! Rid the sector of politics and see how quick a turn-around will happen. Have each geo-political zone own and operate a refinery.