Affirmation of Eligibility for Public Appointments Bill, 2017 (Draft)

Long Title: A Bill for AN ACT TO AFFIRM THE RIGHTS OF THE CITIZENS OF NIGERIA TO FULL AND FAIR CONSIDERATION FOR PUBLIC APPOINTMENT PREAMBLE Whereas: (a) The Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999, guarantees to every Nigerian basic citizenship rights, among which are the right to life, dignity of the human person, and most especially, freedom from discrimination; (b) Failure to give bona fide Nigerian citizens full and fair consideration for vacancies in public … [Read more...]

Party Constitutions and Representative Democracy in Nigeria: an interim assessment

Introduction Nigerians rarely comment on the state of the nation without alluding to the political parties’ failure to nurture internal and representative democracy. The commentators lament the helplessness of the average voter in the face of the overwhelming influence of godfathers, gangsters, and money on the political and the electoral process. The critics insist that despite the hype on free and fair elections, party members rarely participate in key decisions, including decisions as to the … [Read more...]

Magu, the Senate, and the war on corruption

The inspiration for this article came from a contribution that I posted on Facebook last month, February 2017. Noting that President Muhammadu Buhari had heeded the popular call for the resubmission of Ibrahim Magu’s name to the Senate, I weighed in with a recommendation, to wit, that Senators facing corruption allegations recuse themselves when the matter of Magu’s candidature for the chairmanship of the EFCC comes up for deliberation. Apparently, a few of my readers thought I was on to … [Read more...]

WHEN THE SERVANT BECOMES THE MASTER: A CAUTIONARY TALE FOR THE NIGERIAN NATIONAL ASSEMBLY’S POLITICAL ADVENTURISTS

(Text of an address delivered by Professor M J Balogun at #OccupyNASS Event, Abuja, 26 April 2016) Let me begin by thanking God Almighty for giving each and every one of us here present an opportunity to be part of history in the making. Were it not for the Almighty’s unparalleled wisdom and loving kindness, we would not have been inspired to leave whatever we were doing or planning to do to come here and participate in the struggle for our country’s emancipation. I must also express my … [Read more...]

“All Of A Sudden Nothing Is Working”. Really, Remi? A rebuttal to Remi Oyeyemi

When I started reading Remi Oyeyemi’s rejoinder to Tunde Fagbenle's earlier article in SaharaReporters, I eagerly looked forward to a critical but objective assessment of the challenges facing Nigeria since the attainment of independence. Alas, and if truth be told, his piece in the 13th March edition of SaharaReporters did not measure up to my expectation. Instead of taking a holistic or systemic view of the Nigerian state construction quandary, Mr Oyeyemi heaped the blame for all the country’s … [Read more...]

Oil Glut and Nigeria’s Economic Recovery: New Contagion, Wrong and Expired Vaccines

In April 2015, the Nigerian electorate took a bold and unprecedented decision: it sent a ruling party packing. The voters ended the Peoples Democratic Party’s/PDP’s sixteen-year reign, and cast their lot with an untested and cash-strapped opposition known as the All Progressives Congress/APC. Though comprising individuals with divergent interests and worldviews, the APC had promised the electorate what the later craved most—change. Change, in this sense, meant combatting corruption and impunity, … [Read more...]

Nigeria’s looming political appointments’ stampede: Need for order via screening

Introduction If reports filtering out of Abuja are anything to go by, no less than 600 top-level posts would fall vacant in the coming weeks. This is not surprising. A new party is in power. A change of guard comes with the territory. As has been the practice over the years, and considering the role that technical 'know-who" plays in the selection process relative to technical "know-how", those interested in the soon to be vacant jobs have started to line up the support of powerful individuals … [Read more...]

Private Time, Public Space: Highway Theory of Anarchy

“Time has gone when some people were above the law. This time around nobody, not even me, will be above the law." President Muhammadu Buhari Abstract The inspiration for this article came gradually—specifically, in the course of several visits to Lagos, Nigeria. In ordinary circumstances, making it through any urban jungle’s traffic unperturbed is no mean achievement. Extricating oneself from Lagos’s perpetual gridlock is a spectacular, albeit, … [Read more...]

Random thoughts on the anti-corruption campaign

By the way, what is the outcome of the EFCC investigation into the fuel subsidy scam? Were we not led to believe that those implicated in the scam (mostly sons/daughters of PDP chieftains) would soon face the music? Forgive me for asking if the music has stopped playing or the dancers have been granted permission to disperse. Corruption cases to have a habit of getting cold in Nigeria. They get cold because the public is either easily distracted or too forgetful. I have no doubt in my mind … [Read more...]

Getting government back on track: focus on agency governance

How can a government be sure that the goods and services produced by the career public service are the same as those promised the electorate? The honest answer is it can’t. Were all the beans to be counted and duly accounted for, the government would still not be able to say with confidence that the bureaucratic agents’ delivery matches the people’s or their elected representatives’ expectations. If statutory mandates are not ‘rewritten’ along the way by the prevailing rules regime and sundry … [Read more...]