Buhari’s revolution unfolding
While pundits and national conscientisers are clamouring for reform of one sector or the other because of the prevailing corruption in high places, it may not have dawned on them that Muhammadu Buhari is not by nature a “reformer”. He is rather a de-facto dictator, yet not in the most anti-humanistic sense of it, but with some revolutionary flavour capable of bringing about humanistic change.
Our keen interest and study of his body language, apolitical rigidity, political attitude and his spirit-human nature reveals a kind of tendency towards absolutism which engineered, natured and consummated great revolutions in history: Bolshevik, France, Cuba and Ghanaian revolutions to mention but a few. The dynamics and trajectory of Muhammadu Buhari military regime between 1983 and 1985 had the same nuggets. When he was inaugurated as the seventh president of Nigeria last year after his victory in the Nigeria’s freest and fairest electoral performance, he said, “he belongs to nobody and belongs to everyone”. For records, this in the ever-growing political vocabulary and dictionary is “political absolutism”, monism and “political isolationism” with a vector of revolutionary catharsis.
Action speaks louder than speech. Buhari muted and solipsistic actions speak louder than his words. He has the gift of articulated actions and mindset but not the gift of oratory, preferring to admire the embellishment of the scorecard with mindboggling putsch than stereotype of corrosive stilts of primitive accumulations and undulating firmament of bourgeois establishment. His background as a farmer and a military personnel to the core re-enforced his egalitarian and anti-establishment passion and his many debacles in electoral contests strengthened this the more, culminating in the somewhat: “I belong to nobody, I belong to everyone”. His general candour is, therefore, deductively as straight forward as his absolutist perception of the world, a somewhat Buhari critical world view tainted with the cosmic picture of “Copernican revolution” unfolding in Nigeria.
Copernicus or Copernican revolution is the theory that the sun is at the centre of the universe, as the earth rotates around, defines it and gives it meaning anthropocentrically just as the Kantian Copernicus revolution is the illumination of the external world or objects of experience by the subjective mind’s categories. Therefore, Buhari’s unfolding Copernicus revolution is being tailored by his absolute mindsets. In terms of ethics something is either good or bad, vice or virtue and good or evil. In politics, therefore, he has a kind of one party mindset, any other is evil. The good aspect of this world view is that nothing except the “good” as an absolute and this could be inferred from the revolutionary spirits of Stalin, Fidel Castrol, Kaduna Nzeogwu, Jerry Rawlings and so on.
The underlining element in most revolutionary flavours is ,therefore, the Copernican, Kantian and Buhari’s mindset predicated on subjective absolutism. However, there are different kinds of absolutisms in politics as enunciated by different political revolutionaries. Buhari and Gandhi are linked to the revolutionary “absolute good” which is philosophically and politically tangential to the revolutionary “absolute evil” of Hitler in Nazi Germany. It is expected that the unfolding revolution of President Muhammadu Buhari must not in tactics and objective derail into the arcane evil legacy of the latter, which yet in its purest ontic catharsis changed the face of the Europe and the world in general in 1945.
For records, this paper in its highest wisdom is toeing a middle way, analytical and synthetic x-ray of the action parked footage and narratives of the assertions and actions of Muhammadu Buhari since ascension as the seventh President of Nigerian; no stereotypes, no predilection, no partisanship and no exaggeration but totally submitted to the frame, motif and whiff of the best self, the spirit of a gadfly and god of perfection in the service of magisterial audacity.
Revolution in its absolutism macabre and Gestapo drama is naturally total decapitating the foundation and basement of the society’s institutional architecture; between it and the rule of law there is no love lost and it is as a process constitution phobic. In a revolution, unlike in a military decree, the constitution is not suspended but cancelled, indeed it is even closer to the chatter of the international human rights because it is penchant for human conscience support and liberation of the populace from existing decadence. The substance of any revolutionary state is that the hitherto becomes obsolete and needs to be replaced by a progressive one. It is doubtful whether the Muhammadu Buhari unfolding revolution is well packaged with scientific precision by a team of revolutionaries in the proper sense of the noun instead of a regimented, segmented and incoherent outflow of megalomaniac impulses.
A number of upheavals since the inception of this government point to the revolutionary intent. Mammal Daura cannot be a mistaken identity in the job of security management as the Director of Department of State Services (DSS) and with the rest of the members of Buhari kitchen cabinet, it is a putsch team on a reversible agenda to recalibrate and recapitulate a new order. But this is where an imminent danger lies ahead as per what is the take for public good or for narrow selfish and ethnic agenda.
Dukor is a Professor of Philosophy at Nnamdi Azikiwe University
A note of caution here is the warning that every revolutionary fury and flux is always neutral, objective and non-partisan. Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) cracks on corrupt former government officials is a revolutionary revamping of the moral and accounting habit of the society but its political ethnic lopsidedness has been pointed out and criticised. The recent arrest and search of the residences of High Court Judges for ill-gotten wealth and properties is in essence to overhaul or de-tool Nigeria’s judicial system via touching the untouchable. The first lady, Aisha Buhari’s outburst on the existence of strange fellows in the president driving steering is a clear exhibition of ignorance of the secret goal of a revolution. Besides, African culture and to some extent in military culture, women are kept off from intelligence and official secretes about fundamental changes in government, governance and laws of the land.
In recent times public discourse has been fixated on the question of granting the President some emergency powers to address some economic and security problems, none of which is, however, without political implications. Any of such power beyond the constitutional presidential power is the power to change the fundamental, but it must be popular in ethics, politics and economics to carry the people along, reminiscent of Gandhi and Fidel-Castrol revolutions.
Assuming emergency powers in special way entail stepping out of the closed logical equations of law to do the legally difficult and effect some fundamental changes. Actions of President Muhammadu Buhari are now falling into a perspective, corruption war is developing into a wider scope to engulf some members of his party and cabinet and the noose of DSS is hanging on the High Court Judges, the first since the creation of Nigeria, to swoop them off their feet in search and exposure of evidence of corruption, all maybe in the process of cleansing the table.
The unfolding revolution is on course and the tentacles are spreading and may soon go sectoral in which the Education, the Banking and Oil and Gas sectoral shake-ups would define the category of Muhammadu Buhari revolution, whether petty, bourgeois, socialist or religious revolution. However, religious end of the revolution will kill the remnant of Nigeria. Let the Copernican and Neutral Ideal Prevail.
Dukor is a Professor of Philosophy at Nnamdi Azikiwe University