Hardly ever drawn into any national discourse since after leaving office, Attahiru Jega, former chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), has described the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari as “very disappointing.” In an interview recently, Jega said the current administration has performed below the expectations of “so many Nigerians”.
Jega served as Nigeria’s electoral umpire from 2010 to 2015, following his appointment by former President Goodluck Jonathan. He remains the only INEC chairman that has presided over two general elections in Nigeria — in 2011 and 2015, when Jonathan lost to Buhari, making him the first incumbent president to lose re-election.
Jega, who was once a Vice-chancellor of Bayero University, Kano, said although Buhari enjoys goodwill from many Nigerians, citizens are worried “about the direction the country is taking.”
“He (Buhari) has disappointed so many people. He still has time to correct things if he has the capacity to do that. Frankly, his government has been very disappointing,” he was quoted to have said.
“Governance has been very poor at the federal level and many of the states, that is why we are seeing challenges everywhere; whether it is insurgency, banditry, armed robbery or other things.”
Jega’s comments re-echoed the concerns of prominent Nigerians including former President Olusegun Obasanjo, Wole Soyinka, Nobel laureate and Reverend Kukah, Catholic Bishop of Sokoto Diocese, who have been critical of this government.