The Director-General of the Progressives Governors Forum, Dr. Salihu Lukman, has warned the All Progressives Congress (APC) not to admit former Minister of Aviation, Femi Fani-Kayode, into the party.
This comes after pictures of a meeting between the APC National Chairman, Governor Mai Mala Buni; Kogi State Governor, Yahaya Bello; and Fani-Kayode emerged.
It had led to rumours that Fani-Kayode might be preparing to dump the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) for the ruling party.
“Do we want to reduce our party into one in which everybody is welcome?
“Can we for instance in anyway or form contemplate having an Nnamdi Kanu or Abubakar Shekau as a member?
“At this rate, Nigerians will just wake and see some of our leaders presenting Mr. Fani-Kayode to President Buhari as a new member of our party.
“Although, we can confidently argue that President Buhari will not approve such deranged possibility, it is important to caution that such consideration will be stretching the trust of party members beyond acceptable limits,” the statement read in part.
Fani-Kayode had earlier claimed his meeting with the APC chieftains was to discuss national issues and party politics.
The PDP chieftain also noted that Nigerians must set aside their differences, because the country was heading towards a civil war. (Daily Post)
By Olalekan Adetayo, John Alechenu, Friday Olokor and Adelani Adepegba
THE Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, has said despite the security challenges being witnessed in parts of the country, security situation under the current regime is better than the situation in 2015 when the regime came on board.
Mohammed made the claim at a press conference in Abuja.
This is as the Peoples Democratic Party, Youruba socio-cultural group, Afenifere, the Middle Belt Forum and security experts dismissed the minister’s claim, saying the country has never experienced the level of insecurity across the country.
Speaking further, the minister said, “I have no hesitation in saying yes; that the security situation in the country is better than we met it in 2015. Nigeria today is facing security challenges but it is by far better than what we met.
“What do I mean? Prior to 2015, bombings, suicide bombings by Boko Haram were taking place in at least 12 states of the federation. They were Plateau, Kano, Kaduna, Bauchi, Yobe. Not even Abuja was spared.
“And if you look at the number of lives that were lost before then and today, there is no doubt that yes we have challenges but we are much better than it was.”
Earlier, while reading from a prepared text titled, ‘FG makes progress in war against terror, banditry’, the minister claimed that the nation’s security agencies were winning the war against insecurity.
He said, “Since the beginning of this year, which is barely three weeks old, the Armed Forces of Nigeria have neutralised 158 criminal elements across the country. This is in addition to scores of other terrorists and bandits killed during air strikes.
“Some 52 criminal elements were arrested, with scores of arms, ammunition and equipment recovered. Troops have also rescued a total of 17 kidnapped victims across the country.”
Mohammed added that 684,856 barrels of stolen crude oil, 1,724,000 litres of stolen Automotive Gas Oil and 500,000 litres of Dual-Purpose Kerosene have been recovered this year.
While saying the successes recorded by security agencies did not come cheap, Mohammed regretted that some of the troops paid the supreme price in the course of the operations.
He said 118 bandits were killed in the North-West with 11 kidnap victims rescued and 11 arrests made; and 30 suspected terrorists killed in the North-East with arms and ammunition recovered.
Nigerians no longer buying Buhari’s propaganda, says PDP
Reacting, the Peoples Democratic Party on Monday said Nigerians were no longer subscribing to the propaganda being dished out daily by the regime of the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.).
National Publicity Secretary of the PDP, Kola Ologbondiyan, said, “With due respect to the minister, Nigerians are no longer buying the tissues of lies laced with propaganda being dished out by this Buhari regime on a daily basis.
“We had a successful election in Borno State the epicentre of the Boko Haram insurgency in 2015, results were collated and announced, and not a single local government was in the hands of the terrorists.
“Yet, this regime which was a beneficiary of that election is today telling Nigerians that Boko Haram was in control of territory. Nigerians are counting months to the next election to vote out the APC and all its represents.”
Security experts disagree
Also, a security expert, Ben Okezie, disagreed with the minister, saying the security situation in the country had deteriorated.
He stated, “Everybody knows that people are living in fear; so, it is not true that the security situation is better. The insurgents are daily attacking and abducting people.
“Consider what is happening in Oyo State where herdsmen are killing and abducting the residents. And to worsen the situation, the IG deployed a female commissioner of police without much experience to handle the crisis.”
A security consultant, Kabir Adamu, says if the minister used conventional metrics, he cannot say security was better.
He added, “If he (Mohammed) is being fed with information by the military, they will tell you security has improved. The police will tell you the same thing and that is what they are telling the President and by extension, the minister of information.”
Afenifere, Middle Belt Forum too
Speaking, the National Publicity Secretary of Afenifere, Yinka Odumakin, said, “These people now believe their own low quality lies and it is unfortunate for the country. We know that things are far worse today than when the President came in, but apostles of falsehood will make just any claim to justify their pay.”
Similarly, the National Publicity Secretary, Middle Belt Forum, Dr Isuwa Dogo, described the assertion that the nation’s security situation had improved compared to the pre-2015 period as an incontestable lie too glaring for anyone to debate.
“Just last year in 2020, the death toll from the killing spree unleashed by these bloodthirsty herdsmen hit over 1,400 in Kaduna State alone, especially in the southern part.
“The Federal Government should stop this self-deceit that the nation’s security situation is better compared to the pre-President Muhammad Buhari’s administration,” Dogo said.
The former governor of Imo State, Rochas Okorocha, on Monday announced the plan by politicians and other concerned citizens to form a new political movement in Nigeria.
Okorocha, who disclosed this to journalists in Abuja, said the All Progressives Congress (APC) was hurriedly formed in 2014 to take power from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) without taking into consideration the character of individuals championing the course.
He added that progressive-minded politicians perfected the plan in response to current state of the nation.
According to him, Nigerians are not satisfied with the current situation in the country.
Okorocha, who is representing the Imo West Senatorial District in the upper legislative chamber, is a founding member of the APC.
The ex-governor urged “all good politicians” in Nigeria to regroup in a bid to restore public confidence in governance and save the country.
He called for political reengineering and warned that Nigerians cannot be fooled again by mischievous politicians in 2023.
Okorocha said: “The movement for a new Nigeria has begun and we must come together, I mean progressive Nigerians to make the country work.
“The APC was a hurried arrangement. It was hurriedly formed to take power when the then government was drifting. APC would have been better until people who were not members of the party; people who came for congratulatory message hijacked the party and became lords.”
He pointed out that the new coalition is being championed by people with a proven track record of achievement and public spirit, saying it was no longer ideal to allow people without the genuine interest of the country to hijack power in the future.
The All Progressives Congress congratulated Nigeria’s former ambassador to the United States of America, Prof. George Obiozor, on his election as President-General of the apex Igbo socio-cultural organisation.
The party’s congratulatory message was contained in a statement titled, ‘APC congratulates Obiozor on emergence as Ohanaeze Ndígbo President-General, by the National Secretary of the party, Senator John Akpan Udoedehe, in Abuja, on Sunday.
While congratulating the incoming President-General, the party also congratulated the outgoing leader of the group, Chief John Nwodo, and the executive committee he headed for its “mature and patriotic leadership.”
The statement read in part, “The APC Caretaker/Extraordinary Convention Planning Committee under the leadership of Governor Mai Mala Buni is determined to consolidate the ongoing efforts to further mainstream the South-East geo-political zone in the workings of the governing APC and place the zone in its deserved political standing in the country.”
However, the Ohanaeze Ndigbo General Assembly, which claims to be the only recognised Igbo socio-cultural organisation, has warned the newly elected Ohanaeze Ndigbo President General, Prof. George Obiozor, to confine himself to Imo State or risk arrest and prosecution.
The President-General of the group, Basil Onyeacholam, stated this in his reaction to Obiozor’s election in Owerri, Imo State on Sunday.
Describing Obiozor as president-general of Ohanaeze Ndi Imo, Onyeacholam said, “Whatever happened in Imo State today (Sunday) remained null and void.”
He said he (Onyeacholam) remained the President-General of Ohanaeze Ndigbo recognised by law, the Federal Government and the international community.
Onyeacholam said, “Obiozor cannot function. Obiozor has been elected under an illegitimate platform and they were duly served of court processes before they embarked on the said kangaroo election.
“He should make sure he confines himself to Imo State and should not mention anywhere that he is the President-General of Ohanaeze Ndigbo. I still remain the President-General. I’m in charge. There is no vacancy in Ohanaeze Ndigbo leadership.”
Congratulations to the people of Edo State on a credible and peaceful governorship election. We thank the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and the Nigerian security services on the positive role they played in the election and commend their work in strengthening Nigeria’s democracy. We recognize the critical role that Governor Godwin Obaseki and Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu played in promoting peace. We also thank our civil society partners for their invaluable work in upholding democracy and accountability in this election.
The United States remains concerned with reports of some violence that did emerge during the election, and by reports of vote-buying and intimidation of both voters and civil society domestic observers. We will continue to encourage all stakeholders, including INEC, political parties, and the security services, to improve the electoral process in the upcoming Ondo State governorship election. As a democratic partner of Nigeria, the United States remains committed to working together to achieve our mutual goals of peace and prosperity for the citizens of both our countries.
The All Progressives Congress has congratulated Governor Godwin Obaseki on his re-election as the Governor of Edo State.
This was contained in a statement by the chairman of the APC national caretaker committee, Mai Mala Buni, on Monday.
The statement was released a few hours after Buni and the chairman of the party’s governorship election campaign for Edo State, Abdullahi Ganduje, met with the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), behind closed doors.
It was titled “Edo State Governorship Election: Victory for Democracy” and personally signed by Buni.
Buni, in the statement, described the election as peaceful, adding that its outcome represented a victory for Nigeria’s democracy.
He explained that some problems within APC worked against the party and its candidate in the just-concluded election.
The governor subsequently warned against disunity in the party.
The PUNCH had reported Sunday that the Independent National Electoral Commission declared the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, Governor Godwin Obaseki, winner of the keenly contested election.
INEC’s Returning Officer, Prof. Akpofure Rim-Rukeh, said Obaseki polled 307,955 votes to defeat his closest rival, Ize-Iyamu, who got 223,619 votes.
The statement read, “The September 19, 2020 Edo State Governorship election is over, the winner has been declared by the Independent National Electoral Commission in the person of the Mr. Godwin Obaseki, candidate of the People Democratic Party.
“We hereby congratulate the winner of the election, the people of Edo State and all Nigerians. The peaceful conduct of the election and its outcome represent victory for Nigeria’s democracy
“As a party, we join our leader, President Muhammadu Buhari GCFR, to affirm our ‘commitment to free and fair elections’ in order to strengthen ‘the foundation for our political and moral authority’. We commend INEC, our security agencies and all political parties that contested the election for the successful conduct of the election. As a governing party, we will take every step necessary to support the Federal Government to consolidate all the gains achieved.
“We, in particular, want to salute our candidate in the election, Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamuh for his tenacity and leadership. We similarly commend our Edo State leaders, especially our immediate past National Chairman, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole and all our members in Edo State for demonstrating unwavering support for our party and our candidate in the election.
“In the face of all the challenges, we collectively remained faithful and worked tirelessly during the campaigns. We appeal to all our members to be strengthened by the outcome of the election and unite in order to correct all the problems that worked against our party and our candidate in the just-concluded election.
“Let us unite to move our democracy forward. We must put an end to the era when the electoral contest become warfare. We urge our candidate and all our members to join us in congratulating Mr. Godwin Obaseki and the PDP, being the declared winner of the election.
“Our attention must now shift to Ondo State and ensure that we win the October 10, 2020 election. September 19, 2020 Edo election should present a new watershed.
“We will work hard to win the Ondo election. Having reaffirmed our commitment to free and fair elections, it is our expectation that all opposition parties in the country will also commit themselves to free and fair contests. We will therefore accordingly expect a congratulatory message from all parties just as we similarly guarantee that once we are defeated in a fair contest, we will congratulate the winner.” (Punch)
“Even the obstacles on my way, I predict them before those that will bring them will start to think about them. I plan for betrayal, I plan for backstabbing, I also plan for reunion & forgiveness long before they happen.I expect nothing, I expect anything, I expect everything” —Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu.
My dearest Jagaban,
You know very well that I have always liked and respected you. You will also recall that a few years ago I warned you that everything that is being done to you today would eventually be done to you given the choices you made at the time.
I bear you no malice or ill-will but in view of what is happening in your political party and given the fact that your good friend, co-conspirator and collaborator, President Muhammadu Buhari, has finally thrown you under the bus and dumped you, I am constrained to write the following.
The bitter truth is that you predicted NOTHING and you saw NOTHING. The only thing you saw were your own vain delusions and insatiable greed and the only thing you felt and that moved you was your blind ambition.
You sold your body, spirit and soul to the enemy and betrayed your people even though we warned you over and over again that those you were dining with were far smarter and far more astute than you.
Yet even though all the signs were there you dismissed our concerns, vilified us, treated us with contempt, demonized us and sought to destroy us.
Now the chickens have come home to roost and the writing is on the wall. The signs are there for all to see. You betrayed and sold Lagos. You betrayed and sold the South West. You betrayed and sold the South East. You betrayed and sold the South South. You betrayed and sold the Middle Belt. You betrayed and sold the North East. You betrayed and sold the North West. You betrayed and sold the Muslims and you betrayed and sold the Christians.
Simply put you betrayed and sold EVERYTHING and EVERYONE in Nigeria just to feed and satisfy your psychotic obsession and compulsive ambition.
Like Icarus the Greek, you flew too high and too close to the sun with your wax wings, puffed up and fuelled by your hubris and pride and now you shall meet your nemesis. The spiritual wound that has been inflicted on you is irreversible and terminal and there is no going back.
The dark clouds that lie ahead of you are thick, ugly, frightful, violent and impassable: you cannot make it through them safely or survive them. Your enemies have dug a pit for you and you have already fallen into it.
They have finally stripped you naked, grabbed you by your balls and taken everything from you.
You have lost your mystique, honor, glory, self-respect, following, clout, pride, reputation and so much more. You have also lost control of the political party that you conceived, formed, nurtured and built. The APC was your baby and now they have taken it from you and are set to kill it.
They fooled you, used you, dimped you and humiliated you and now they are going to expose you, rubbish you, malign you, break you, crucify you, investigate you and utterly crush you.
You dreamed of being Vice President in 2015 and you failed. You are dreaming of being President in 2023 and you will fail.
In all your plans what you failed to appreciate is that God alone rules in the affairs of men. You refused to acknowledge or accept the fact that the Presidency of Nigeria can only be given by God and He gives it to whom He deems fit by prophecy and divine decree.
It is not about money and power and if it were Olusegun Obasanjo, Umaru Yar’adua, Goodluck Jonathan and Muhammadu Buhari, who had neither of the two before being respectively elected as President, would never had made it.
It is about God and God alone. It is for Him alone to give. It is about His purpose, His will, His counsel, His plan and His glory.
He OWNS the Presidency and the minute any man or woman attempts to usurp His role and think that he or she can buy it or manoeuvre his or her way into it by the usage of political intrigues, guile, sagacity, wisdom, power, knowledge, money or anything else, the Lord disqualifies and rejects him.
Such a person will fail woefully and may even end up losing everything he or she values and cherishes in his futile quest.
God will never share His glory with anyone and He will never support a man or woman that is prepared to mislead, betray and sell his own people down the river just to satisfy his vaulting and insatiable ambition of becoming President.
Yet the signs were there but you refused to acknowledge or accept them.
They refused to give you a formal position in the National Executive. They ensured that some of your key loyalists in the South West turned against you and opposed you.
They refused to accept even ONE of your Ministerial nominees both in 2015 and 2019. They humiliated your protegee who you nominated as Vice President and turned him into a pliant and pathetic little errand boy with no testicular fortitude or shame.
They drove your nominee at FIRS out of office unceremoniously and have placed him under criminal investigation.
They have divided the ranks of your loyalists and turned even your hitherto most trusted lieutenants against you.
They insulted, undermined, marginalised you openly and worse of all they made it clear to you privately that they would NEVER give you power.
All this meant nothing to you and you shamelessly continued to support their evil ways and toe their satanic and murderous line.
Yet if you did not care about what they subjected you to you ought to have at least cared about what they did to Nigeria.
For the last five years our nation and people have suffered because of the calamitious choices that you made and the inexplicable and unconciable alliances that you forged.
You propped up and supported a ruthless, heartless, corrupt, bloodthirsty and cruel regime and tyrant and a President that is clearly beside himself and whose mental and physical faculties reside in another realm and in another world.
Consequently our nation has been utterly and completely destroyed, our economy ruined and our people decimated.
They have been slaughtered, butchered, pauperised, emasculated, humiliated, marginalised, insulted and impoverished.
Hundreds of thousands of them have been murdered in cold blood in their homes, towns, villages and farms and millions have been displaced.
Millions more have been ruined and economically destroyed whilst our country remains weak, divided and the butt of cruel jokes all over the world.
Because of your choices Nigerians are being subjected to persecution, physically attacked, enslaved, humiliated, lynched, scorned, maimed, killed, disgraced, evicted and declared persona non grata both at home and in distant foreign lands whilst our foreign Embassies are being demolished by miscreants and local criminals even in supposedly friendly countries.
I sincerely hope thet one day you will reflect on all this and consider the damage you have done to your kinsmen and compatriots.
Whether you do or not is left to you but one thing that is clear: for the choices you have made, for all you have done and for the sheer wickedness and greed that resides in your insensitive and dark heart you will pay a heavy price both in this world and in the world to come and the Lord will hand you over to your political enemies.
Permit me to conclude by quoting the instructive words of a tweet that I posted just yesterday after I heard about the latest developments in your party. I wrote,
“First Oshiomole is kicked out by the Court of Appeal. Then his preferred replacement, Ajimobi, falls into a coma. Then his arch rival, Giadom, is recognised by Buhari as National Chairman.
Conclusion: it is over for Tinubu. He has been thrown under the bus and retired from politics!”
I stand by those words. Happy retirement my dearest Jagaban: may you live long to see the glory of our country restored and the damage that you have done to our people repaired. Shalom.
Chief Femi Fani-Kayode Former minister of aviation.
President Muhammadu Buhari has been urged to forgive the hostility of some Igbo youths and work to put a southeasterner in Aso Rock when he leaves office in 2023
APC BoT member, Okoloagu, a retired brigadier-general, made the plea on behalf of the people of the southeast
Okoloagu noted that it is only fair to let the Igbos, the third-largest nation in Nigeria, pick the country’s next leader
A member of the All Progressives Congress (APC’s) Board of Trustees (BoT), Joseph Okoloagu, has pleaded with President Muhammadu Buhari to ensure that he is succeeded by someone from the southeastern part of Nigeria in 2023.
The retired brigadier-general made the plea in an interview he had with a national newspaper, Daily Trust, where he also pleaded with President Buhari to forgive the hostility of some Igbo youths towards him.
He said: “I humbly appeal to my revered President Buhari to ignore the hostility of the Igbo youths against him and his administration and be a nobleman, to make sure at the end of his tenure, an Igbo man succeeds him.
Okoloagu noted that for the sake of equality, the southeastern should be allowed to produce the country’s next president in 2023.
“I want to make it abundantly clear that it is fair and proper to let the Igbo have a shot at the presidency. But it can only be done on a party platform. If the party the Igbos are using now is okay to give them the presidency, so be it.
“But if the party they have been patronizing is not strong enough to give them the presidency, what I am advocating is that, for peace, equity and good conscience, there should be a president of Igbo extraction and not necessarily an Igbo president when Buhari leaves office in 2023.”
Okoloagu’s plea came just days after President Buhari on Tuesday, December 17, said that he would not allow anyone to use his name to campaign for votes in the bid to compromise the 2023 presidential election.
The president said this when he was paid a visit by Secretary to Federal Government (SGF) Boss Mustapha alongside his aides to celebrate the Nigerian leader’s 77 birthday.
He promised Nigerians that he will give them free and fair general elections in 2023.
Specifically, the president said he would not make the mistake of attempting a third term and went on to enumerate reasons why he would not seek another term.
Buhari’s announcement has since thrown open the floodgates of intentions among politicians.
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The godfather of Lagos politics, Ashiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu in 2015, led the Southwest into an alliance with the north to birth the All Progressive Alliance (APC). His decision, evidently, was informed by the expectation that the two geopolitical regions will share power, invariably to the exclusion of the Eastern bloc. And ultimately that he, or the Southwest will take power by the time the north completes two terms in 2023. But it has proved to be a miscalculation.
Certainly, power play is about conspiracies and alliances. Tinubu is well within his right to do what he thought would best advance his political interest and that of his region. However, in backing President Muhammadu Buhari, he cut his nose to spite his face.
It may not have seemed obvious to many, but once Buhari took power in 2015, Tinubu’s political career was in jeopardy.
To navigate the president without bruises, the best Tinubu could have done was retire from active politics and assume the role of an elder statesman. He did not, he stayed on, wanting to be president and pushing hard to remain at the centre of political discourse. But power is jealous and if there is any holder of the highest office in the land who would tolerate a co-president, it is not Buhari. Things are beginning to unravel, fast.
Without Tinubu and by extension, the Southwest, Buhari could not have been president today. This is one fact that president’s men who now dominate the political space and brook no opposition will hate to admit, but it remains true, regardless.
But being essentially Buhari’s kingmaker, it was political naivety to decide to hang around in the expectation that he would share power. The old Machiavellian advice is that the prince must first destroy the one who made him king. Reason? Because he could decide tomorrow to make another king.
Writing in ‘The Prince’, the legendary Niccolo Machiavelli noted “… he who is the cause of another becoming powerful is ruined; because that predominancy has been brought about by astuteness or else by force, and both are distrusted by him who has been raised to power.”
Of course, it should have been obvious that, in helping to make Buhari president, Tinubu wasjeopardizing his political career and plunging the Southwest and by extension, southern Nigeria into political slavery whose only parallel in the country’s political history, is the late Emeka Ojukwu leading the Igbo to war in 1967.
With respect to the Biafra war, blaming Ojukwu for embarking on it could earn one exile in the Igbo country. But if truth be told, the war was avoidable and could have been avoided if Ojukwu had not been too stiff to listen to the likes of Zik and other intellectuals who understood better, international politics and diplomacy. This is not to say, nonetheless, that Ojukwu was not sufficiently provoked by the killings of the Igbo in the north in the aftermath of the July 1966 revenge coup that threw up Yakubu Gowon as head of state, and indeed the actions – or lack of it – of the Gowon-led federal side. Regardless, it was still in his hands to accept to fight or toe the path of diplomacy which, given the circumstances, was the best option and the only way to win international support for his secession quest. In the event, he went to war and only succeeded in sacrificing more Igbo lives and weakening the Igbo politically.
The consequence of that weakening is that it provided fertile ground for the emergence of hegemonic northern power. The imbalance so created is largely responsible for the crisis of Nigeria’s national identity. One mistake many Nigerians, particularly in the south, make is the assumption that the country is already formed and settled as a circular state. It’s not the case. There is the ever present quest to define the country, right of course, from the 1804 jihad.
Colonial rule put a stop to it, then in the post war years, the middle belt soldiers who dominated the army acted as a wedge. Tinubu’s alliance with Buhari has served to reenact that quest. Buhari is now, apparently, out to define the country. The Jagaban’s political miscalculation could yet prove too costly.
The old generals who I reckon, understand this are already raising alarm. But of course, the horde of naive, ignorant online crowd of crumb eaters are blurring the resistance line.
As it concerns the 2023 presidency, it should be clear to anyone with a functioning brain that President Buhari’s north has no intention of relinquishing power to the southwest or any zone for that matter. What many may not have realised, however, is that for the next three decades at least, if ever, and should Nigeria remain one, power will not leave the north. But in projecting, one must always leave space for the law of unintended consequences and the God factor.
But given Buhari’s antecedents, was there any grounds for the southwest particularly to have given him benefit of the doubt in 2015? Absolutely none in my reckoning. However, it would appear that emotion rather than sound political calculation informed their support for Buhari in 2015. It was, perhaps, more of spite for the East than love for Buhari. I had been amazed when, in the heat of the moment in 2015, before the election, the news editor of my then media platform branded a fellow reporter who didn’t buy into the Buhari presidential project a “bloody b*stard who is following the Igbo people to betray Yoruba by supporting Jonathan.”
In the lead up to the 2019 polls, I had on several occasions engaged my landlord – a backer of Buhari’s second term project who loves to discuss politics with me – on who between Atiku Abubakar and the president would make a better leader. My insistence was, of course, that Atiku would. After we exhausted all manner of issues he raised against the former vice president, he said finally that he would still back Buhari because Atiku was an “Omo Igbo project” and that “after Buhari, Yoruba will take power and after Yoruba, Hausa will take power again.” According to him, “we will be rotating it like that, Igbo people will never smell that place.” I had more of pity for his ignorance.
When in 2003, Buhari joined presidential race, he did so, apparently to stop the then president, Olusegun Obasanjo. Not because Obasanjo had performed badly as president, having taken power with the return of democracy in 1999, but because Buhari and the section of the north he represented believed that power had to return to the region.
In settling for Obasanjo in 1998/99, the intention of the northern military class was for him to do four years as compensation for MKO Abiola – the Yoruba had become uncontrollably agitated – and hand power back to the north. But not long after Obasanjo took power, it became clear that he was never going to leave it for anybody. This realisation led to agitations, criticisms of Obasanjo government was swift in the north, the climax of which was the Sharia crisis of 2000. To take power however, the anti Obasanjo forces in the north knew that ultimately, it was about going to challenge him at the polls. Buhari emerged as the arrow head of that challenge. And through speeches and actions that appealed to regional sentiments, he built cult following that saw him win elections convincingly in the north right from 2003.
Until 2014/15, Buhari was a regional hero who believed he could become president by winning elections in the north and never thought seriously about campaigning in the south. However, in 2014/15, the Tinubu led southwest gave him an undeserved national platform, and through heavy media propaganda, dressed him in the robe of a born again democrat. But old habits die hard. Once in power, Buhari did not hesitate to take off the borrowed garb of a nationalist and democrat to put on his original robe of sectionalism. Right from his first set of appointments, he made clear his intentions. And as it stands, he has completely consolidated power in the hands of the north. Buhari is an idealogue, usually idealogues are very resolute and persistent people. Say what you will, he is doubling down on nepotism. Shout ‘Fulanisation’ or ‘Islamisation’ all you will, he will only look for a hate speech bill or social media bill to shut you up rather than re-examine his ‘hate’ policies.
Possibly, when Buhari is done with the country – if he has his way – no southerner will, on the basis of election, ever become president except at the behest of the north. By suppressing votes in the south and inflating figures in the north, the administration is only trying to establish a pattern, a dangerous pattern which supporters of his party in the south are evidently too blind to see.
It is clear to the discerning where the president is headed. But the question is whether he would succeed. I had pointed out elsewhere that the project would fail, ultimately, because Nigerians are too many to be subjugated.
It would seem, from the actions of those controlling the levers of power, that there is an attempt to precipitate a national crisis with a view to using force to take over the country. But of course, this is a country of 200 million people. The advantage those who have “legitimate” right to bear arms are enjoying at the moment would be lost if there a total breakdown of law and order. And the country would break into fractions controlled by warlords such that it would take a miracle to have it again as one, stable country for anyone to control.
THE DIRTY POLITICS OF THE YORUBAS! THEY WOULD SUPPORT THE DEMONS FOR CRUMBS OFF THEIR TABLES PURELY TO CURRY FAVOUR!
Lord Abiodun Ogunseitan Founder of the reform party of Nigeria
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