Committees haven't solved a problem in Nigeria. This won't be an exception
There are certain tasks you shouldn’t out-source to a bloody committee—auctioning presidential jets easily tops the list.
“There is a government committee already in place, working to reduce the number of aircraft in the presidential fleet. Some aircraft will be boarded, some others returned to the Air Force for operations. The Change is here”, President Muhammadu Buhari’s spokesperson, Garba Shehu, announced gleefully on Twitter, hours ago.
I want to believe I am not the only one who considers setting up a committee to sell off most of Nigeria’s unwieldy collecting of presidential planes, a waste of taxpayers’ time and money—money we barely have.
Nigeria has 10 aircraft in its presidential fleet.
The clamour for the sale of a chunk of these planes has been on since Buhari emerged President on the back of a change mantra. That he is only just waking up to the possibility of actually selling them off, can be excused.
But a committee overseeing the sale?
A committee lounging and slouching around the Villa; drinking tea, coffee and getting paid allowances to sell jets?
These things aren’t really as complicated as Nigeria often makes them seem. All that is needed is a public auction process overseen by the Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE) or some other privatization agency and voila!
Former President Goodluck Jonathan was often the butt of jokes for his resort to committees to solve all of the country’s problems. None of Nigeria’s myriad of problems was solved by a committee with Jonathan as President.
Nigeria has set up thousands of committees since it attained independence, but it’s still one of the poorest and badly managed countries in the world. But here we go again.
As they say these days, "Who committee don epp?"
Isn’t it also curious that it took a query from Twitter user Japheth Omojuwa for Shehu to make the ground-breaking committee announcement? When was the committee set up and who really are its members?
Is it some covert, nocturnal committee?
We’ll probably need another committee to arrive at these answers.
Calls to Shehu’s mobile for answers to some of these posers, weren’t answered nor returned at the time of heading to press.