The last time any group became the butt of such derisive jokes or searing criticisms was when some governors, out of what many thought was feigned love for Nigerians and enlightened self interest, approached the Supreme Court to shoot down the Federal Government and the Central Bank of Nigeria’s ill-fated re-colouring of Naira notes. Of course, the governor’s won.
This time around, it is Senators, suspending their rules to pass, on a non-working day for them, a bill to ensure that the 2022 Supplementary Appropriation is executed until the end of 2023. Curiously, the sitting days of the lawmakers extend to the 3rd of June, 2023. Many wonder why they couldn’t wait until Tuesday, 30th May, 2023, their next sitting day.
Analysts suggest they hurriedly passed the bill so that the President may assent to it before 12 midnight on 28th May, or swearing-in day on Monday, 29th 2023 when his tenure would lapse.
For their action, Nigerians have been swift in mocking the elder lawmakers: the jokes and criticisms, many unprintable, have come in torrents for the lawmakers, who have often boasted that they restored sanity to the federal government’s budget calendar, restoring it to the January to December budget circle. Now they are pushing for the financial calendar to run from one year to the end of another.
Despite their boast of restoring this sanity, they have often approved budgets to run into a new year.
However, it is not only the Senators that are at the receiving end of the stick. President Muhammadu Buhari got a few.
Below are samples of some of the printable jokes and criticisms:
▪︎ “PRESIDENT BUHARI BROADCASTS TO THE NATION
President Muhammadu Buhari will make a farewell broadcast as President, Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces on Sunday, May 28, at 7 am.
Television, radio stations and other electronic media outlets are enjoined to hook up to the network services of the Nigerian Television Authority and Radio Nigeria for the broadcast.
Special Adviser to the President
(Media & Publicity)
May 27, 2023
“It is in your own interest to watch or listen to the President’s broadcast and make sure you sign the attendance sheet in case that is the way the Administration wants to share the $800m World Bank loan.
▪︎ “Please for those of you that are still awake, call and inform us if the presidential broadcast is moved to 4am or 5am (referencing the time-belt Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, Chairman, Professor Mahmud Yakubu, chose to announce the results of the presidential election.)
“They must not share this $800m World Bank loan without Nigerians knowing.”
For the Senators, three samples stand out:
▪︎ “You are laughing fa? Continue. That is how we were laughing until Senators went to the chambers to pass and extend 2022 Supplementary appropriation till December 31, 2023.
“They couldn’t even wait for the President-Elect to be inaugurated on Monday.”
▪︎”ASUU, CONUA, ASUP, NASU, Doctors were on strike for months, Senators didn’t call a meeting on Saturday to negotiate with ASUU.
▪︎ “Kidnapping and killings were on the increase, the legislators didn’t meet on Saturday or Sunday to pass and approve more funds for the Army, Police, Civil Defence and Vigilante.
“Abeg no sleep when I am asleep.”
Many more of these criticisms and jokes line up the social media.