The political scene in Nigeria is obviously one of the most interesting of all such scenes, all over the world. It is, because it is only in Nigeria that we see our own politicians talking from the two ends of their mouths saying exactly two different and opposing things and believe that they are talking!
They even believe that the persons that they are talking to only need to hear them; and that what they say does not have to make sense before these other people would believe them.
Indeed, they simply believe that they must be believed by the polity, merely because they are in power, whether what they say is true, make sense, or otherwise. Many times also, they do not even remember what they said in one place and go to another place immediately and say another very opposite thing.
The party that they call the PDP did this consistently during their time, until it was all over in the sight of God; and they went down the drain (hopefully for good)! In the present dispensation, the cacophony has resumed and is cascading to the higher than PDP level; and the three of our minister of information and their TWO paramount leaders would seem to be the leaders in this wise!
Usually, when one makes a critical evaluation of things that are not so good in a polity, it is easy to think that such is a “holier than thou” exercise. For this reason, many desist from making useful and constructive criticism of things. So, the evil situation keeps growing or even multiplying; and all they then do is to continue to grumble underneath. Of course, this is a very silly attitude to take. We must all realize that anybody or people who do wrong, do not fully understand the evil that they are doing. Otherwise, how would they continue to do it? Those who realize those wrongs and wish to correct it, must also realize that fact; and acknowledge that had they come the way that those wrong doers did, and not the relatively more privileged one that they did, they would have done exactly the same as the wrong doers; or even more! So, there must be no holier than thou attitude in that regard. Errors must therefore be pointed out in that win-win, no looser-no-winner, ways! All of us have, of course, come short of the will of God for all of us. But that is not the reason that these errors should not be pointed out constructively and corrected!
So then, to come to the present issues at hand, obviously, the APC has brought itself to a much worse state of everything evil that we all accused the PDP of; and in spite of pointing these out consistently to them, they have refused to listen. Instead, they are running, as they unfortunately believe themselves, to an unchallengeable victory in a so-called 2019 national election. They have consistently muscled out any opposition by their most corrupt “consensus candidate” system of politics – from the selection of Adams Oshiomole as their party chairman to the present consensus and “no-opposition-allowed, no-free-contest allowed” selection of MB as their not-to-dare-to-challenge presidential candidate. They are even collecting most obviously corrupt monies to back that “consensus” with no free and open election or contest allowed! Some of these undisclosed contributors are governors owing the poor labouring masses of their states several months of unpaid salaries! Yet they can afford to “contribute” to that fraud. This is the reason that all such contributions must be made public for us all to know!
Their spokesman has consistently been talking to us as if he is living in another country other than this one with all the growing unemployment, terrorisms and insecurities of all sorts all over the places, more institutionalization of corruption and her two grandfathers of radical ethnic and religious fanaticisms and favoured geriatric leadership with a cacophonic “not too young to rule, but only after I have left at over 90 years of age bill”, etc! Yet, Lai Mohammed believes that these abuses and improprieties have all disappeared in the country; and that we have never had any government as good as this one. Even another of these leaders and spokesperson in the person of Professor Ango Abdullahi had accepted that “all that the now all too maverick OBJ had written about the present corrupt leadership and their government are true, Lai Mohammed has refused to believe it and to agree that we should seek for something better as Ango has said. And now our very dear Ango seems to have given up and gone to sleep on the matter. Not only OBJ, but TY Danjuma, IBB, Abdulsalami Abubakar, Yakubu Gowon and their semi-opposing Atiku Abubakar have all said so. But none of these other lying leaders will agree with it. On the contrary, a corrupt consensus presidential candidature and the muscling out of all healthy and democratic contest is their preferred way to go! And they are still fighting corruption! Those who are corruptly muscled out, are “only weaklings”, they say! Of course, this is not said because the writer believes that those that had been so corruptly muscled out are better people or are weak; but that this whole “consensus” matter is anti-democracy and part and parcel of our systematic corruption – whether they had managed to smuggle the corruption into the constitution itself or not! If the people doing these things are truly that powerful as they think, positively, then, why are they afraid of a free and fair contest? Why are they compounding our systematic corruption in this very open and more sinisterly corrupt manner?
Our president goes somewhere and says Boko Haram and/or other equally terrorist imperialisms or their other minor ones are from people thatGadhafi trained in Libya long ago. Then he immediately goes somewhere else and says it is due to Lake Chad drying up and those who relied on it for their livelihoods have no alternative than terrorism for their survival; supposedly, which should attract our cooperation with them? Yet with the water table so high in all of Northern Nigeria and land so expansive, it will not take six months at the most to create lush cattle ranches all over the North for these people all these while! And these people believe that they are talking to fools and such other unintelligent people?
We must say in conclusion, therefore, that all those preaching these consensus candidatures to us must stop it, as the most undemocratic thing that they should ever say! If we are going to grow our democracy as we must hurry up seriously to do now, we must ban all such so-called consensus candidature and submit all our electioneering processes to free and fair contests and election! A word, they say, should be enough for the wise! God bless the true and up-coming Nigeria!
- Asuzu is Professor of Public Health and Community Medicine at the University of Ibadan