Running-mate to late MKO Abiola during the infamous June 12, 1993 presidential election, Ambassador Baba Gana Kingibe, yesterday, advised President Muhammadu Buhari, to communicate very clearly – to Nigerians and the world at large, his administration’s core principles, strategies, policies, plans and programmes for change, noting that he has limited time to bring the needed change in Nigeria.
Kingibe, Nigeria’s former Ambassador to Greece and the country’s representative in Pakistan, said though Nigerians are patient with the president because of the goodwill and respect he commands, they can also get agitated if their expectations are not met at a given period of time.
Kingibe also said that to successfully fight corruption, there was the need for the APC-led Federal Government to deal with the past fairly and firmly, using the principles of the rule of law.
The former Secretary to Government of the Federation (SGF) said: “The task is more urgent because there is only but a limited time before impatience on the part of the public blends with resistance from vested interests and dilutes the national consciousness for change.
“Fortunately, goodwill for the person of President Buhari is considerable, and people are willing to give him time to reset the country.’’
The Elder statesman added that the Federal Government must make its policies clear, pointing that Nigerians cannot afford to be kept in the dark in this computer age.
According to him, President Buhari should be prepared for resistance from some quarters, especially those who would be affected by his policies for change.
He said: “Looking ahead, to sustain change and overcome resistance, government must communicate very clearly – to Nigerians and the world at large – their core principles, strategies, policies, plans and programmes for change.
“We live today in a world of the 24-hour news cycle: Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp, and all the other real communication tools of the internet age. No leader or government can afford to lag behind their detractors in the competition for public support.’’
Kingibe further said there could not be any meaningful change without an aggressive reform in the public service, adding that government has a duty to instill positive change in the attitude of public servants.
“For the change we seek to be more than a mere slogan, it must also temper official attitudes in the public service. It is necessary to reform all arms of government and their institutions.
“The simple truth is that despite the leadership and vision of the president, and regardless of the merits and commitment of every member of his team, without change in the attitude of the public service, good intentions will not produce change.’’