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I Voted For Integrity!

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By Austin Maho
The best depiction of integrity, that I have come across, is the one that draws an analogy with the wheel of a bicycle. The integrity of the bicycle is directly proportional to the strength of the spokes in the wheel. Assuming that the wheel is held in place by 30 spokes, when one or even two or three or even five are missing the effect is minimal; it is hardly felt, it can easily bear the weight of the rider without much ado. It can even be ignored because it doesn’t have any real noticeable impact on the weight bearing capability of the bicycle except the wheel is subjected to an integrity test.

However, when the wheel continuously loses its spokes or struts and no corrective measure is put in place it would get to a time the entire wheel would collapse under the slightest weight and loses its integrity, completely.

It is instructive to note that the wheel didn’t lose its integrity outright when it lost the first spoke or the second or even the third, it happened gradually over a period of time until the integrity of the wheel totally collapsed.

Like the wheel, like human character and integrity. Every time you tell a lie or a lie from your past catches up with you or you behave contrary to an assumed image or personality, one spoke falls of your wheel of integrity.

It can happen rapidly or over the cause of time you really cannot place your finger on when it happens, but you only wake up one day and find that people don’t believe you anymore or take your word with a pinch of salt. Those that defended you become wary and disenchanted. Vocal supporters become critics, and trusted friends turn their backs.

This is the case with Buhari! He came into office with his presumed integrity in place. But just six months in office, all pretensions, apologue and myth about Buhari has been unravelled. The image of the Spartan, who had to borrow money to pay for his presidential nomination form or who rides on economy class or who drinks sachet milo and milk has been shattered.

The myth of a former military Head of State, Petroleum Minister and Chairman of the Petroleum Trust Fund, PTF, who could only afford one house in Abuja and a mud house in his home town Daura in Katsina state and few herds of cattle to his name, has been obliterated. Since Buhari embraced the gold and marble of Aso Rock, things have never being the same and many of his supporters are at a loss to explain the metamorphosis of Buhari. Change is here but the only thing that seems to have changed is Buhari, while all others have remained the same or actually worse off.

Buhari promised to fight corruption and has been absorbed with fighting corruption, but the fact of the matter is that six months into his administration not when person from the previous administration which was labelled as patently corrupt is standing trail for corruption in any law court in the land.

Buhari promised to lead the war against Boko Haram, six months on all we have seen is the relocation of the military command headquarters to Maiduguri and a few press ups from the army chief. Boko haram is still on rampage, bombing, killing and maiming. After all the initial huffing and puffing nothing has change.

He promised to return the Chibok girls. That now sounds like a distant promise and the campaigners are more disillusioned, the sit-outs have dwindled and media attention to their cause has moved elsewhere.

Buhari said he doesn’t know what fuel subsidy was all about yet approved the payment of N413 billion for subsidy and yet there is no fuel in our filling stations.

Buhari and his party the APC complained about the number of aircrafts in the presidential fleet. He said he would convert them to a national carrier. But he came, and maintained the status quo spending a whopping N6 billion for their maintenance in six months to sustain his junketing around the world.

In six months of his administration, Buhari has visited over twenty countries and spent over 40 days outside Nigeria with no measurable benefit whatsoever. Last week he made a stopover in Abuja from Iran on his way to Malta en- route Paris where he would be spending 4 days. The nation burns and bleeds from all sides, he can’t be bothered.

Who would have thought that six months down the line, a Buhari would seat with a Bukola Saraki, Ekweremadu and other principle officers of the national assemble for a dinner in the state house?

Here we are, in just six months change has ran full circle and we are back to where we started, feeling used, duped and dumped. Mr. Integrity is having the last laugh!