With Adetunji Ayobrown
Certainly there is a clear and great difference between being literate and being educated as this is going to manifest as you are about to be entertained in this new drama unfolding in our polity. Most people are so thoroughly subjective that nothing really interests them but themselves. Under President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration series of events that are so strange and dramatic that they might have been scripted in a play are daily occuring.
As many believed, Unibuhari, Daura, Kastina State, is nothing but a huge joke taken too far. It is not funny at all that Aisha plans to establish university campus in her husband’s to be named called Muhammadu Buhari University, is a blow below the belt to Nigerian masses who paid through their noses to get through the so called public and private universities. The first lady, Hajia Aisha Buhari hinted as part of her plans to establish a new private university, which many see as been too ridiculous even to common sense when most federal, states and even private universities under her husband’s administration and watch are nothing but glorified secondary schools….and adding salt to injury, Buhari himself bothered little or not at all.
Nigeria has close to a thousand glorified secondary schools called universities, with no single one among them ranked amongst first hundred World Class Universities. This should rather be source of concern to Hajia Buhari and her husband, or what do you think?
It is rather better to speak pragmatically to pragmatic people, a lesson Hajia Buhari needs to learn. Delirium of her plan swept throughout country and my goodness, the social media went wild… ‘let him (Buhari) resign first’ was the position of Academic Staff Union of University over the proposal.
A good actor plays many roles, her ambition outweighed any gratitude she felt, and after all, the presidential election has come and gone. Imagine, just after a single tenure of four years, it is obvious that the Buhari family is now rich enough to the extent of funding a university. This impossible and unimaginable plan astonished the public and if you ask me, I am bewildered too.
It is a known fact that those who cry in public may temporarily elicit sympathy, but the sympathy may soon turn to scorn and irritation at their obsession. Ask the Sudanese and Qataris, Nigerians are seen as educated fools with money on their minds…comments on the social media suggest that Hajia Buhari planned establishment of this private university is nothing but money making venture, to siphon money overseas in the name of partnership. I don’t blame the Sudan, Qatar or any other country partners who felt that way.
Those in the back rows can see her and hear her and those in the front rows will marvel at her audacity. She wants to create a persona that she could constantly adapt to her own desire, a persona that attracted attention and gave her presence always, or if not what else could this suggest?
The implication is that Nigerians should know that this leadership does not believe in public-funded education. Nigerians should support the struggle for the government to take education as a core investment upon which this country will be liberated. It is not the children of the rich that will solve the problems of Nigeria but the children of the poor and the tool they need is quality education.
Mrs Buhari did not however reveal when and where the university would be sited but only explained that the university would be established in collaboration with partners from Sudan and Qatar nations which reminded many of her husband’s Sudan connection, I guess you could recollect too. Though, for many, they feel she is crying to get all the needed attention, could be that a malicious fraction of Nigerians are bent on denying her this satisfaction.
She is playing the part for public consumption, many can see through the thick smoke, though, Hajia Buhari lamented some of the challenges facing education sector in the country but forgot or failed out rightly to cry to her husband to find lasting solutions to problems facing the teeming masses that are at the mercy of the already deteriorated public university system.
Oro kodun lenu iya ole: what explanation will a police officer give after stealing goat? If we have a president in a country that has simply refused to fund public education and all we get from the first family is plan to establish a private university in collaboration with some foreigners, it is disaster for this country and for a sitting president, ASUU posited.
If you have interest in anything private, I think it is proper to actually leave the public space for those who want to and are eager to serve the masses. Many students can’t afford the existing private universities across the country. If the Buharis really want to help our education sector, then increasing the capacity of the existing ones through adequate and proper funding will be a better option.
People who wear their hearts on their sleeves out there in the society are tiresome and embarrassing, their sincerity notwithstanding, it is hard to take them seriously. Many believe the new university will surely suffer same fate like others before it, as nemesis will soon catch up with it, so to say. Perhaps it may now be one of the reasons for her and her husband (Buhari) to see realities of challenges facing Nigerian students and the university system in the country.
Many are of the opinion that the first lady is not serious, Nigeria already has proliferation of universities and they are not being taken care of. Since they are policy makers, they will now formulate policies that will ground public universities for their interest to thrive. Bad actor is the one who is always sincere, method acting is fatal in the real world, ‘let him resign first’, many aligned with ASUU’s stand. When you are holding a public office, don’t establish a private concern. She should wait until Buhari is completely out of office before thinking of bringing a private university in whatever name.
The character you seem to have been born with is not necessarily who you are; beyond this characteristics you inherited which your parents, friends, spouse and peers have helped to shape as your personality, Hajia Buhari should show Nigerians that a ‘real and genuine mother’ cares not only about her children’s education, but also especially for the less privileged and the vulnerable whose parents are to be paid a meagre N30,000 minimum wage by her husband’s administration. *Ayobrown, Senior System Analyst, National Pilot Newspaper, writes via firstname.lastname@example.org