- President Joe Biden.
On Wednesday, April 28. 2021, President Joe Biden delivered his first historic address to the joint Congress of the United States of America. The one hour plus speech was loaded with democratic values.
As the leader of the free world, his address was to the city and the globe. The speech was comprehensive. He went from politics to economy to human rights, and admonished the world autocrats to improve. He said he came to office when America was on fire, but he has made the people to move on together.
On economy, he said he prefers bottom to top system as against top to bottom, the trickle-down principle. His economic policy is based on supply-side theory, hence his huge stimulus proposal for individuals and families. This policy is already reviving the economy devastated by the global pandemic, Coronavirus. Tourism is a big part of American economy and it has been badly hit by COVID-19. This sector of the national economy lost over $6 billion and 400,000 jobs. Therefore, stimulus package is inevitable if the economy is to bounce back. This is the vision of a patriotic leader.
President Biden is trying to return America to the global political pinnacle where it has been till the last four years. It was normal for people to go to the classrooms, conferences, seminars, and political and activists’ rallies and quote American presidents. Researchers research on American presidency and American presidential speeches. The standard of the revered institution was unfortunately watered down in the past four years.
The standard of the American democracy is based on “we the people are the government”. Hence the definition of democracy emanated from an American president as “Government of the people by the people and for the people.” Without the people, there is no democracy. This could be likened to a school without students. As students are the nucleus of a school so are people the life wire of democracy.
Some people could say, true democracy. This is a wrong definition of democracy. There is nothing like true democracy. This makes room for the so-called “home grown” democracy. This is nonsense. It is either democracy or no democracy. There is nothing like in-between. A system is either democratic or it is not no matter who manages it. The operators may try to color it and brighten it; eventually, it will manifest its true color – autocracy.
President Biden is on a personal mission to restore sanctity to the American democracy. He knows that power belongs to the people. That we the people are really in charge and the president is the chief servant of the people. If he doesn’t do well, they will vote him and his party out in the next election. It is not the desire of any political leader to lose election. When the president is sensitive of the popular feeling, he will do well. He will do the right thing, make patriotic policies and execute them faithfully.
The situation is different in a “home grown democracy”. In this latter option which is really no option, the president is bigger than the country. He owns every institution in the country; legislature, judiciary, military, police, electoral body, anti-graph agencies, etc.
We the people explains the role the electorate plays in democracy. Different arms of government could make the rules, it is the electorate that maintains the standard. They do this through their active participation in elections. Electing leaders worthy of the office and rejecting defaulters. Where the electoral power of the public is denied them, democracy cannot flourish in that environment. In this political milieu, the president behaves like a rhino, a bull in a China shop! He bullies everybody since he doesn’t need their consent to remain in office. His spoken and body language is, I can survive without you.
This is the case of Nigeria, the giant of Africa. The politicians audaciously tell the public, whether you vote for me or not, I will win. This mindset is ridiculous. It’s a clog in the wheel of democracy. This is why the incumbent in Nigeria is right now bullying everybody and nourishes the incredible desire to Islamize the country, that is, make every citizen of the country a Muslim.
He has depreciated the sanctity of life in the country. Nigerian culture is pro-life. There is sanctity of life from birth to natural death. Any idea opposed to natural death – suicide, euthanasia, murder, etc, – is not tolerated. If you commit murder, you go into self-exile. A suicide victim is not given a befitting burial. It is so because he committed abomination.
All these beautiful cultural values have disappeared under President Muhammadu Buhari. Officially, Nigeria is the third most terrorized country in the world today. Apart from Boko Haram, he has secretly allowed other tribal terrorist groups, Fulani Herdsmen and Fulani Bandits, to flourish in the country. When the original base of Islamic State of Iraq and Syria was made too hot for them, there was no other place they found suitable for them to relocate in the whole world except Nigeria. This was possible because of government’s tacit support for Islamic insurgents in Nigeria.
A known terrorism sympathizer and sponsor was recently made a minister of the federal government. In spite of the strong national outcry against the appointment, the president allowed him to continue. The minister can’t travel freely around the world because he is on U.S. terrorism watchlist. Yet, he is a popular minister of the federal executive!
While President Biden is working hard to revive the American economy through different types of stimulus packages, the same idea was floated in Nigeria, those in charge of the program, ministers, governors, presidential aides, embezzled the funds. Of course, it wasn’t the first time. Mid-way into Buhari’s first term, there was the need for stimulus to revive the economy. State governors and others in charge of the stimulus diverted the funds to their private accounts. There was national uproar, nothing happened because the offenders were close to the president.
The president himself revealed that his government has budgeted enough money to fight Boko Haram and other insurgents in the country but the top military officers in charge of the project embezzled the money. He knows them, he didn’t fire any of them. Rather, some of them were recently rewarded with ambassadorial appointments. The embezzlement and corruption continue. All in all, the country is the loser.
While the terrorists are quietly allowed to go about with AK-47 and other sophisticated weapons, local vigilantes are not allowed to be armed. Governors have voiced their frustration. They had appealed to the federal government for protection by the army and police. The reasonable appeals were ignored and denied by the federal government. But the Jihadists have the military and the police to escort and protect them during and after their expeditions. This is technically done to make sure that the attacked communities do not organize themselves and revenge against the Islamic insurgents.