Former president Goodluck Jonathan listed his “legacies” while speaking at the Friends of Africa Coalition on “Strengthening Democracy and Elections” at the mayor’s office in Newark, New Jersey.
The so-called achievements included accepting (s)election defeat and handing over power to the winner, and: “In 2009 the richest Nigerian was the fifth richest man in Africa, but I handed over a Nigeria that produced the richest man in Africa”. This was in reference to businessman Aliko Dangote.
Jonathan couldn’t do more to live up to his “clueless” billing with that comment. Franklin D Roosevelt once said: “The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much, it is whether we provide enough for those who have little”.
Jonathan, in nearly six years as president, squandered opportunities provided by the rise in the price of oil to improve the lives of the majority of Nigerians, who have little or nothing. Instead he enriched his cronies and the likes of Dangote. While the billionaire may have become the richest man in Africa, the largest numbers of the poorest people in Africa could be found in northern Nigeria, where Dangote is from, and even in Jonathan’s Niger Delta Delta region.
It was good luck for Jonathan and friends and bad luck for the rest of us. To suggest that Dangote’s rise to Africa’s number one billionaire was an achievement, does nothing but show up Jonathan as Africa’s daftest ex-president.