Exactly a year ago in Nigeria, there was a huge clamour and calls for a change in the administration of the country.

Promises were made, hopes were raised, the people believed! For the first time in our country, a substantial amount of its citizens were on the same page. There was a common dream, a common vision, a common goal, a common mission, a common drive, to change our beloved nation for the better!

Nigerians became fed up, tired and largely grew unhappy at the way our country was been managed by a group of individuals who didn't have the country's progress and growth in their hearts. These few individuals, the cabals, the caucus men were only concerned about themselves alone! Little attention was paid to the plights of its masses.

The level of poverty was increasing, which ought not to be so for a nation as blessed as Nigeria. Nigeria is a nation blessed with both natural and human resources, been the largest producer of oil in Africa and also the most populous country in Africa with an estimated figure of over 200 million people. Wow! We are so blessed yet so poor.

This situation ought not to be, if not for the greedy and heartless leaders we have had in the past. But despite the mindless looting of our country's resources by these politicians, it does not change the hussles of the average Nigerian. Nigerians are hardworking people, we cared less about these evil done to us by our so called leaders.

But all of these started to change gradually, thanks to democracy that has given us the right to choose and elect the leaders of our choice. Though we have always had this privilege, it was utterly undermined maybe because we felt our votes weren't going to count as usual as it has always been the case, were elections where rigged.

But this wasn't business as usual, somehow we were made to think otherwise, largely because the opposition party did their very best to enlighten us and made us have a change of heart and believe in CHANGE.

As the elections grew closer, we realised that we had the power to change our predicament for the better. The two major political parties in Nigeria ventured into big, major, strategic, political campaigns. It was a really a tug of war! They both matched their strengths, the competition was rife.

They both knew what was at stake, the quest to retain power or take over power was strong as a rock! All eyes were on Nigeria! The world was watching so it made it extremely difficult for any political party to rig the elections. There were delegates and observers from all over the world notably from U.S.A. U.K France and all the notable power houses from all over the world.

It was going to be a historic election, it was marked to be free and fair! Of course this gave Nigerians hope and we believed that the destiny to change our dear nation into the one we desire and dream of was in our hands. We carefully listened to all the manifestoes of all participating political parties but only two stood out! Which are the Peoples Democratic Party PDP (ruling party) and All Peoples Congress APC (main opposition party).

The PDP was the ruling party, they had been ruling since we had our democracy in 1999. They had been in power for 16 years and they promised us TRANSFORMATION. They promised to transform our nation through so many means as they stated in their TRANSFORMATION AGENDA. They fielded same policians as they did in 2011, Goodluck Ebele Jonathan as President and Namadi Sambo as vice president.

On the other hand, the APC who had been the main opposition party, promised us CHANGE! They really did a very good job in convincing Nigerians about their CHANGE CAMPAIGN.  This was very successful mainly because they fielded the right candidates. For presidency, they fielded General Muhammadu Buhari (GMB), who was contesting for presidency for a remarkable fourth time. He had previously contested for the ultimate position but with other different parties (CPC). His amiable, humble, discipline and robust personality appealed to Nigerians as the leader they desired. While for vice President, Professor Yemi Osibanjo (SAN) was chosen.

The contest was evenly matched, the PDP had under its control all the resources it needed to ensure the elections were won convincingly. While the APC embarked upon a master plan strategy to ensure it did better than its opponent. Other political parties like APGA, LP, etc, did also have good manifestoes and strategies but it cannot be compared to the strengths the PDP and APC boasts.

A lot happened, different types of political manipulations, threats, arrests, trials, were evident. This created stress, tension, strife, fear amongst its citizens but Nigerians were determined. It did not deter the urge and quest for a change! Nigerians had made their mind up! We wanted change! We had chosen GMB. He was the choice of many, notably due to the remarkable success he enjoyed during his short but successful military spell (1984).

Meanwhile, the Boko Haram insurgency was still very much active in their distasteful terrorism. They had abducted over 200 girls in borno state and the government was working really hard to combat this deadly terrorists group. They were still bombing and kidnapping Nigerians. This also played a major role to make Nigerians crave for CHANGE. We believed a change in power will aid us combat Boko Haram better especially when we started hearing of the cruel corruption and misappropriation of funds in the military. Funds and loans we took to purchase ammunition to fight the deadly insurgent group was been diverted and shared amongst corrupt politicians.

Meanwhile, INEC, Nigeria's electoral body had embarked on a major reform to minimize rigging and other bad electoral practices. One of such reforms included the use of a card reader. Though this new initiative had never been tested, it was billed to be used in the forth coming general elections. Of course it generated mixed reactions from Nigerians alike. But it conquered, thanks to a steadfast and upright leader in the person of Professor Attahiru Jega. He refused to bow to pressure. He was determined to conduct a free and fair elections and thanks be to God, He did. He made history and grew increasingly popular. He was an inspired leader and is admired by all.

Like I said earlier, a lot happened, even the fixed date for the proposed Presidential election was postponed, due to so many reasons like security but it was learnt that it was largely due to political interests.

To God be the glory, the elections held and it was a huge success. It was free and fair to a considerable extent, at least compared to the previously held elections, it was far a greater success.

The winner of the Presidential election was President Muhammadu Buhari of the APC. He defeated Goodluck Ebele Jonathan of the PDP. He (PMB) amassed a greater amount of votes from the north where he is from. Goodluck Ebele Jonathan conceded power in an amazing fashion. He even called his opponent to congratulate him, he is indeed a very good man. Very few expected such to happen, so many predicted that the aftermath of the elections were going to bloody, with war and all sorts as threatened by some militants in the south, but God had his way. Nothing of such happened. Glory be to God.

The simple and humble act Goodluck Ebele Jonathan earned him a massive recognition and respect, not only amongst Nigerians but also from all over the world. He is a legend already and his name is written in the sands of time. He is a hero Nigeria will never forget. Many people even described his action as un-african, and that they expected him not to accept defeat or concede power to an opposition party. But God had his way.

The victory of PMB was celebrated all over Nigeria. Songs and chants of "Sai Baba" filled the air. That's his nickname, he is loved by all and its victory was the smell of a new beginning for our dear country Nigeria. Alas, our votes counted, we had our choice, democracy was indeed becoming a part and parcel of Nigeria. We had gotten the change we desired and clamoured for. We placed so much hope and expectations on the new administration, we wanted to see change overnight.

May 29th 2015, the Buhari led administration began. It was a new beginning, an administration with an enormous task, to overturn the fortunes of Nigerians. Indeed, it is not an easy task but they had accepted the mantle, they have decided to serve their country and have sworn to serve us diligently.
It is time for them to start fulfilling the promises they made to us during their campaign. Well, according to this present administration, they said they had inherited debts from the past administration and they were doing all it can to recover and raise enough funds to kick start their administration.

One of the very remarkable achievements of this present administration is the bailouts it released to states that couldn't pay their workers salaries. Wow, over 25 states of the 36 states in Nigeria were unable to pay its workers their salaries. Some workers were owed as much as 6months salaries. This was attributed to the previous government. The past administration was accused of plunging the nation into a devastating scenario and crises, that made some states to be unable to pay its workers their allowances and entitlements. The massive embezzlement of public funds and corruption of the previous administration was taking toll on this new government and was beginning to slow down the work rate of the new regime.

So PMB led administration was able to provide a bailout to these states so that they will be able to pay their workers salaries and not plunge them to unnecessary sufferings and hardship. So credits must go to PMB for this good work. But there is still lots to be done,  the promises made are yet to be seen.

Notably, one of the campaign promises made were job creations for our unemployed youths. We were promised millions of jobs, but we have not seen them now. Though these things take time, and won't happen overnight. The opposition had labelled this government as slow, like a bad locomotive train. It is better to be slow and steady though, but they have to live up to expectations. Nigerians are not very patient people, we want to see results and it had better come fast. They also promised to pay our unemployed graduates a monthly stipend of N5,000. These are some of the promises Nigerians are waiting to see come into manifestation.

Some other promises include free meals to our children in primary schools. We are still waiting. The change we were promised is not yet evident, it is coming in a rather very slow fashion.
We know that one of the promises they made to us was the anti-corruption campaign, no doubt, this part of the promise is the most evident for now. The present administration is not playing when it comes to the corruption war. It is no longer business as usual for political office holders. They are all on their toes I tell you. With the recent probes, trials, and court cases, its clear that this administration is determined to recover all the looted funds of the past administration.

No doubt, this is one part we Nigerians are very happy about. The so called untouchables in Nigeria are facing the heat. Justice is been done. So its a good thing PMB has kept this promise. We hope to recover as much as we can and build our country Nigeria to a place we all will be very proud of.

Another aspect I'll like to talk about is the ministers appointed. Though it took quite a long while for PMB to name his ministers, I must confess that the wait was really worth it. With the likes of Babatunde Raji Fashola (immediate past governor of Lagos state) as minister of power, works and housing, Rotimi Amaechi (immediate past governor of rivers state) as minister of transportation and Kemi Adeosun as minister of finance, we are quite very ready for a robust change in these sectors. We believe that these hands are very capable of growing and uplifting our dear nation. The power sector has been a major cause of concern to Nigeria and we believe that once the power sector is gotten right, it will lead the way for a massive growth in our economy.

The opposition party, PDP has also been doing very well as an opposition, though they have had their own complains about this administration. Notably, one of the main complains is the probing of mainly members of the opposition party (PDP) and has described it as a "witch hunt". They have expressed their dissatisfaction in the manner in which PMB is embarking on his corruption war, and also on the appointments he has made so far, with a majority coming from the north. He (pmb) has been accused of been partial and favouring the north. But PMB has defended himself by saying he is only following the demands of the constitution.

The change we were promised is beginning to manifest, recently there had been 2 major changes I consider as very impressive and benefits the masses directly. One of them is the removal of the fixed charges on our electricity consumption. We previously pay a fixed charge of between 700 naira to 1000 naira (depending on your location) on a monthly basis, regardless of whether you consume electricity or not. Our power sector is not very encouraging, we are not guaranteed regular power supply, so whether you see power at all in a month, you must pay your monthly fixed charge. So the removal of this fixed charge was a big relief to its citizens. It was a good news to all and it was celebrated. Now you only pay for what you consume. Sai baba!!!

Another remarkable change is the reduction of fuel price! Though the reduction was small compared to what we are expecting, it is still something! After all half bread is better than none. Previously we purchase petrol for 87naira per litre, it has been reduced to 85 naira and in some cases 86 naira. Even though people say that the change is only about 50 kobo or 1 naira, I still maintain that half bread is better than nothing. We were promised that the pricing will be reviewed regularly.

Even though we experienced fuel scarcity some weeks ago, particularly during the festive season, the situation has greatly improved and is reverting back to normal.

So you can that indeed the change we seek for is coming gradually even though it is at a slow speed.
The strongest so far has to be the corruption war, with the likes of Dasuki Sambo been tried in court for arms deal corruption (#Dasukigate) where billions of naira was diverted and shared amongst corrupt politicians, the money that was supposedly meant for the procurement of arms and weapons to combat Boko Haram.

Also worthy of mention is the arrest of Nnamdi Kanu, leader of Biafra and owner of Biafra FM. Others include Raymond Dokpesi of Daar communications.

No doubt that President Buhari is really keen to reduce corruption in Nigeria, credits must be given to him for his relentless and committed efforts to do justice to corruption.

Another promise of change the PMB led administration promised was to bring an end to Boko Haram by the end of 2015. No doubt that the military has done extremely well in this fight, we can not say that they have successfully defeated Boko Haram.

These are some of the change promises that was made to us and even though some have been made a little evident, some are yet to be visible. We believe in the PMB led administration and hope to see more of the change he promised us.

This is my opinion on the change agenda, I would love to hear your opinions and know if you have felt the change in your own end.

Please drop your views and opinions on the comment box below.


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