The recent declaration of President Goodluck Jonathan to run for a second tenure has aroused both mixed reactions from Nigerians with 66 per cent of respondents in favour of his declaration and 34 per cent against. In a poll conducted by OKAFOR OGECHUKWU, NWAMAKA ANICHEBE and ANALUBA CHINONYE, Nigerians bared their minds on this development and his chances of winning in the 2015 general elections.
Nigerians are divided towards President Goodluck Jonathan recent declaration of his intention to run for a second term. While some are singing praises of his administration, others have heavily criticized his government as they believe Nigeria is no longer a good place to stay again. Owing to the fact that the country has been in a state of chaos in Jonathan’s administration, respondents to the poll conducted by this media believe the president is not the right choice of leader going into next year’s general elections. The hearts of Nigerians are clouded with mixed feelings. However, those who have applauded his administration think he is the best man for the job as they have been impressed with his performance at the helm of affairs so far.
A respondent, Chief Nwosu I.N., a businessman said that the president’s declaration makes no meaning because it is not affecting the economy as it makes no changes.
“The people surrounding the president are fraudsters and dupes, at this age we Nigerians cannot stand for ourselves. He should be mindful of those he calls his cabinet members. He has many chances of winning the 2015 election. I look forward for a better Nigeria.’’
Another respondent Darlington Igboasoiyi, a trader, also said that the president has done his best these four years. A good road will always be passed two times. I believe he will do wonders if he wins the 2015 elections.”
Also responding, a student Mr. Omotayo Ayodeji said: “His first term in office wasn’t too bad in the sense that he tried giving the country his best. When I say his very best I mean in the aspect of electricity, construction of roads and so on. Though one of his lapses is not being able to fight against Boko Haram insurgencies, I am not judging him based on sentiments. He has chances of winning because it is very obvious not withstanding the pressures surrounding him. I look forward to seeing a better Nigeria, youths being empowered and finally graduates getting jobs.’’
On the contrary, a printer Mr. Adedogun who disclosed that he was less concerned said: ‘’I do not care about his intention to run for another tenure. All of them are same thing. In his first tenure, he did not do anything so I am not interested in his second tenure, what I am interested in is voting for the right person. I have a candidate in mind and I think he will do better, as for Goodluck, he no follow(sic). The rate at which the Boko haram is killing the future leaders of this nation is a very serious matter. The security sector of this nation has to be addressed. He should also create employment for the people. These are the two major aspects I think he should improve on.’’
Further responding, there were those who believed that his second tenure will yield no fruit. One of which was a civil servant Mr. Ayo who is quoted as saying: ‘’In my own opinion, his intention to run for another tenure will not be good for Nigeria. As far as I am concerned, he has not done anything for Nigeria and if he allows another party to rule Nigeria, I think that will be good for Nigeria. Jonathan for second tenure is not the best idea for Nigeria now, Nigeria should therefore think twice before voting. The power supply is bad in Nigeria as we hardly have light. The economy is very bad and I think he should improve on that.’’
Another who pleaded for anonymity stressed that she was not satisfied with Jonathan’s declaration as she feels the president has not done anything to effectively tackle Boko Haram insurgence. ‘’Hell no! I don’t think he will win because of the issue of Boko Haram and he has not done anything so far. Everyday we hear news of bomb blasts from different parts of the country. It is so annoying and discouraging.’’
Also responding, Mr. Chibuzo Adikibe a businessman, who applauded his efforts commended him on what he has been doing for the country as he said: ‘’He is doing the right thing by coming out because PDP does not have any presidential candidate for that seat. I think he has about 60-70 per cent chances of winning because the south- south and most of the northern states are supporting PDP.’’
Adding to the song of praises being sung by Jonathan’s supporters, Mr. Izuchukwu a student who responded said ‘’ He has done well so far because the civil servants and electricity has been taken care of. But the issue of terrorism and inability to fight the Boko Haram totally has affected his achievements so far, so he should try harder to curb terrorism if he wins the elections next year.’’
Chinedu Onuorah a student responded by saying that his intention is a very good one:”His intention for re-election is a laudable achievement because of his transformation agenda, there is no other candidate that is qualified in PDP to be selected, he is the man of the people and we are behind him and with his power of incumbency I think he will win the election. We are solidly behind him.’’
Angry Nigerians were not left out as they expressed their grievances towards his declaration also.
Mr. Agboola Ayodele Adams a contractor who expressed his annoyance said: ‘’He is insensitive in the sense that the people who he claims to rule are dying. For instance, those living in the northern parts of Nigeria now find it difficult to sleep with eyes closed. This man is not serving the nation at all and if I may ask; is his political ambition more precious to him than the lives of the people he claims to rule? I see no reason why he should be allowed to run a second term. Yesterday I posted on my Facebook page, bbm, twitter that “to all PDP fans and Jonathans lovers may God rule your lives the way Jonathan is ruling Nigeria” and funny enough there was no response to that and believe me I have about 70 per cent of Jonathan’s fans as friends. The man is not trying .Take a deep look at the nation’s economy and security. If you ask me I will say he is just being self centered. For me I think his chances of winning the 2015 election should be rated 35 per cent thank you.’’
Not forgetting those who believe Jonathan has an unfinished work that he needs to complete said that Jonathan has been an exceptional leader as he has been able to distinguish himself from the past Nigerian leaders.
Chief Donatus Akazugo a businessman who said: ‘’He has every right to declare his intention if he so wish to run a second tenure. Why I said he has every right is because most Nigerians are agitating for him to come and complete the work that he started. And moreover he has achieved what other past presidents has not been able to achieve: take for instance the construction of roads across Nigeria, railways, establishment of 14 new universities of which about 7-8 are allocated to the north and about 4 allocated to south if am not mistaken. Most persons think the president is weak which is not true. The man has really tried for Nigerians. The eradication of Ebola virus in our country by the president and minister explains how strong the man is. Why I say he is strong is because he is endowed with wisdom. He therefore merits the post of presidency come 2015. His lapses are not being able to bring Buhari to security operatives for interrogation after he made a statement that, “Nigeria will be ungovernable for him if he (Buhari) doesn’t win the presidential election.’’ It is worthy to note that it was after Buhari’s statement that we started hearing of the issue of Boko Haram in Nigeria. Secondly, the way and manner he is addressing the issue of Niger Delta is very poor, people are dying there because of oil firms. Again the issues of unemployment and increment of salaries; take a deep look at our doctors and their welfare. His chances of winning is very vibrant and bright because the North, South, South –South, East, South West, to North Central, north east, have all seen his works and they are calling on him. The way he handled the Anambra state election, Ekiti even Osun. What I look forward to is the completion of the roads which he has started and then steady electricity. I advise him to work more on the issue of security alongside checking of his appointed ministers. They should be checked monthly or even quarterly.’’
There were some who commended his wonderful efforts in the area of health as they have given him the go ahead for next year’s general elections.
Emillia Daniels a student talked about Jonathan’s efforts towards making Nigeria a healthy state said ‘’I think he was able to eradicate Ebola virus disease in our country with the help of some of the stakeholders and he brought about 14 new universities in his tenure and women were given more opportunities in government. Come 2015 election, I think he will be able to provide job opportunities for graduates. That is if he wins.
“Besides he has about 300 group supporters. Now talking about his lapses I won’t say much because I don’t know I can only lay emphasis about him not being able to fight the Boko Haram insurgences and that of the Chibok girls. My advice to Mr. President is that he should please work towards the insurgency and insecurity of the nation.’’
With the 2015 general elections at hand, Nigerians continue to remain optimistic that the best man for the job will emerge victorious.
It is left to be seen who that best man would be. But until 2015, let us keep our fingers crossed.