2017 in Nigeria was laced with political uncertainties and crisis. The ill-health of President Muhammadu Buhari and the secession agitation by the Biafrans that preoccupy the South Eastern part of the country, lead the array of political activities that shaped the country.
Here are are some of the activities/crisis that found their ways in to Nigeria’s record book in 2017 as complied by Jare Tiamiyu.
- President Muhammadu Buhari in the second week of the year left the country for London, United Kingdom to seek medical attention. He came back after 58 days of intensive medical care. Before his arrival, several comments were made by the Nigerians, oppositions and Civil Society Organizations. The President also surprised everyone when he asked his Vice President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo who have been the acting president to continue acting while he has some rest. Not up to two moths, the President jetted out to London again and spent 103 days receiving treatment.
- Another story that Nigerians, most especially the followers of politics in the country will still for a long time remember is the Grass cutting scandal that involved the sacked Secretary to the Federal Government, Babachir Lawal.
- Year 2017 was a year of ‘Dollar Discovery’ in Nigeria. The discovery in Kaduna home of Former Group Managing Director of Nigeria National Petroleum Commission, Andrew Yakubu was thought to be massive enough until a real massive funds was discovered at a residential house in Ikoyi, Lagos state, through a policy introduced for that purpose – whistleblowing policy. The latter amounted to over N13bn. The money was said to belong to Nigeria Intelligence Agency. This led to the dismissal of its Director General, Ambassador Ayo Oke.
- As the year proceeded, another fraud and insubordination scandal rocked the NNPC the Minister of State for Petroleum, Ibe Kachukwu alleged the GMD of the company, Dr. Maikanti Baru of awarding a $25bn contract with the approval of the board. The President helped in resolving the crisis and silent the allegation contained in the memo that leaked.
- The Mainagate is another word added to the dictionary of Nigerians and got its from the crisis that emanated in the Pension Trust Fund. The Chairman of the Presidential committee was drown by the murky water of corruption and was declared wanted by Economic and financial Crimes Commission but the matter is till today unresolved or carpeted by some cabals in the government.
- Magu’s double rejection at the National Assembly also made headlines in the year 2017. Even though he still remains the acting chairman, but the Lawmakers have said they will never recognized him but he is unlawfully holding on to power.
- The year 2017 was a year that the one time ruling party in Nigeria, Peoples Democratic Party will want forget it larger percentage that was full of crisis. The Ali Modu Sheriff caucus fought very hard and hang to power for a very substantial part of the year before they were dismissed by the judgement of the supreme court. The party held a convention on the 9th of December where Prince Uche Secondus defeated Prof. Tunde Adeniran – the last man standing from South West.
- Also, Dr. Willie Obiano of Anambra state emerged victorious in the governorship election that was head in the state. The only APGA governor in the country showed that he remains the most popular politician in the state as he defeated candidates of All Progressives Congress and Peoples Democratic Party.
- Another very big and memorable even of 2017 is the secession agitation by the Indigenous People of Biafra led by the want-away leader, Nnamdi Kanu. The Nigerian Army launched ‘operation python dance’ to quench the escalated tumultuous and violent agitation. The leader Kanu has since left the country and his whereabouts remains unclear til date.
- The fuel scarcity that resurfaced some days to Christmas is another polical hardship inflicted on the Nigerians. Although, till now, the source of the scarcity has not been unraveled but the blame has been channeled to the government.
- The last on this list is the recent appointments made by President Muhammadu Buhari in to boards of federal parastatals. The shocking aspect of it is the inclusion of six dead people on the list. One was even announced to be the chairman of a board. The Presidency has come to defend the revelation as expected, blaming the inclusion on the lateness in the release of the appointments.