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Can Amaechi really be a President? By Ayokunle Adebayo



His Excellency, Rotimi Amaechi has an ‘impressive’ performance in public office. However, I have few questions to ask and issues to clarify.

Aside holding political offices, what other vocation was he into? If there was none, can he please tell us the source of his stupendous wealth? Apart from being involved in politics does H. E Amaechi have a ‘second address’ ?

Nigeria needs a leader or leaders that are a hybrid of technocrats, ‘financial engineers’, public servants, detribalised ‘dereligionized’ and consummate politicians. What experience and records of successes across board does Amaechi have to show us outside political offices as he ‘applies’ for the job of the President?

As governor, how was he able to grow the economy of Rivers State and how has the growth been sustained? Are there legacies to show or prove the quality of his leadership.

As Transport Minister, beyond pushing the Chinese and others to speed up the execution and completion of the Standard Guage rail projects, what ingenuity did he bring into sourcing of funds for the projects?

As we attempt to answer the questions about the rail transport sector, we need to consider the activities and successes of his counterpart in the Works and Housing Ministry, Mr. Babatunde Fashola, who has executed greater and more expansive roads and housing projects through the sourcing of funds from Sukuk, tax credit schemes, Infraco, AfDB financing, regular budgetary allocations among other creative financing.

Therefore, why couldn’t Amaechi bring innovative financing ideas into sourcing for funds to build standard guage rail lines from the Port Harcourt- Maiduguri and East- West rail lines when the loans from the Chinese were not forthcoming?

In view of dwindling revenues from oil and the global economic downturn, does Amaechi have what it takes to reengineer our economy beyond the rentier system that he has been used to all his political working life?

In the realm of politics, beyond winning elections into public office and having been in politics for over two decades, what political legacies like structure, mentees, leaders etc has Amaechi raised within and beyond Rivers State? Why does it seem as if his political voyage has mostly been characterized by turbulence, crisis, treachery, chaos from which he seems to have been the only beneficiary?

In his second tenure as governor of Rivers State, he fell out of favour with the Federal Government, judiciary, security agencies, etc and this had a negative effect on the administration of the state. Outside his Rivers State, he seems to have had a hand in every major leadership crisis in all the political parties he has been involved with. These seemingly ‘endless’ crisis in Rivers State does not portray him as a good manager of people and a good conflict manager.

These human management skills which he seems to lack are very much required in running a multiethnic, highly ‘religionized’, politically volatile country like Nigeria.

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