Gently, yet often, exercise your risk threshold like a muscle."
– Frank McKinney
Those who follow me closely will notice that my support for the ACN has waned since the strange bird fellowship that led to the birth of the APC. Interestingly, I voted for the CPC during the last Presidential Elections and voted for the ACN at gubernatorial level,but turned coat to vote for the PDP at Senatorial level (as a protest against the imposition of Senator Ashafa on Lagos East) and voted ACN for both House of Representatives and House of Assembly.
ACN before its metamorphosis still has the best thought out programmes, compared to other political parties, but without people who have an understanding of what development is, such programmes will remain paper tigers as we have experienced in some states. Even if we pretend to leave Lagos out of this comparative analysis and focus on other core (ACN) states, evidently, there is a clear cut difference between the quality of governance in Osun compared to what we have in say Oyo, Ogun and even Ekiti, inspite of the fact that these three states collect far more from Abuja in the name of allocations than the State of Osun. Driving through Benin City today, you will agree with me that for the first time since the days of Oba Ovaramwen Nogbaisi, Benin could now be referred to as a City without questioning. Before now, all you would see is Benin but not the City.
In the PDP, a visit to Enugu State (incidentally, Enugu has one of the lowest allocations from Abuja) is enough to ask questions on what the other governors are doing. Sullivan Chime has proved beyond reasonable doubt that he came to serve. Or can any contest the fact that Akwa Ibom State is today one of the most outstanding in virtually every sector imaginable. And Danjuma Goje’s footprints speaks for themselves.
In Imo State, Rochas Okorocha (even if you dont like his swagger) has unarguably upped the ante in development. Take it or leave it, he has an idea of what the people want,and he is delivering results,you may not like his style. If you focus on the results and worry less about his style, you may see clearer. And the fact remains that Imo State has never had it better since the days when Mbakwe Made Things Happen! Controvert this claim if you wish and with verifiable facts too.
I have come to the conclusion that it is not in the party that makes the difference; it is the faces behind the masks.
It is in the individuals because we have seen the same poor quality of leadership in today’s APC as in PDP, and those who have ported to PDM and whatever baptismal name they may come up with, already have the DNA of poor leadership qualities ingrained in them.
But take it or leave it, it is still from among these same 'discredited' politicians that Nigeria will see its messiah, if the nation endures. As long as those of us who 'know' what to do, lack the courage and the financial power to venture into the Crocodile infested murky waters of Nigeria politics. Our hopes will remain on the few sparks that may spring up from among these 40 thieves.
Why this development in PDP is a good omen.
Every student of politics will tell you that without such disagreement over interest aggregation, there won’t be political progress. Political parties do undergo a certain level of implosion or explosion depending on from where pressure is applied to its core. Britain today have three major political parties but it has not always been like that, same goes to the US that has two major parties( and we witnessed the emergence of the Tea Party recently)
In the UK it used to be the Whigs and the Tories. But in the mid 19th century the Tories evolved into the Conservative Party, and the Whigs evolved into the Liberal Party. That’s why the Conservative Party is still referred to as the Tories till date. However, later on, the Liberal Party moved to the left while many from the Whig who became Liberal Unionists moved closer to the Conservatives. This two groups dominated the political scene until the 1920s, when the Liberal Party started losing steam and its national status was replaced by the emergence of an anti-Tory opposition party led by some disgruntled elements which became the Labour Party, through an alliance between the labour movement, trades unions and socialist societies. But as recent as 1988,the remnants of the Liberal Party merged with the Social Democratic Party to form the Liberal Democrats, which is now the largest third party and is part of the ruling coalition in the United Kingdom today.
So those who see this development in the PDP as a bad omen do not pray for the much needed evolutionary process that will help grow the Nigerian political system. The PDP was formed by five major groupings that pretended that pushing out the military was their major concern. However after pushing out the military, they allowed the same people they pushed out discard their uniforms and hijack the vehicle that was used to push them out. That’s why in all these things we have retired military officers, Police officers, Customs Officers playing one key role or another. But hopefully, I pray this development go well, so that Nigerians would be able to distinguish between the carpet baggers and those who truly want to serve. I think it is time for them to be shocked into reality and break up so we know who is who.
Even if they are doing excellently well which we all can testify they are not, there is still the need for this to happen from time to time. Doing well is relative and that relativity changes from person to person. In Singapore, where the ruling People’s Action Party(PAP) has been in power since independence and has delivered in virtually every respect, at least its mission, “To build a fair and just society where the benefits of progress are spread widely to all” could be said to have been achieved. Yet Singaporean voters shocked the Party early this year in a by election by choosing the opposition instead.
I expect a lot of good tidings to come out of this development in PDP and I am of the persuasion that Mr. President would be doing this nation a great service by calling the bluff of Atiku (who with all due respect, will never be president of Nigeria), Kwankwanso and the rest. He should allow them go their way. This will give him an opportunity to test his popularity and acceptability by Nigerians. And in view of that, it will ginger him to do more and deliver on most of his election promises so we can have something to hold him by. Hopefully, our votes may once again begin to count. Moreso, it will sort of provide a more level playing ground for all, even the APC would use this opportunity to prove their mettle to Nigerians. Nigeria is crying out for this opportunity and we must not mess it up.
If Mr. President succumbs to the threats from Atiku and co, he is wasting a very brilliant opportunity through which the ‘renegades’ would have known their real political worth. Some of them masquerading as political assets are in real terms political liabilities. Many of them are spent forces that cannot win a councillorship election in their wards, but ‘swagger’ around as national kingmakers due to the high level opacity that envelopes our political system and the unbridled patronage that they all like vampires suck the blood of this country’s political life.
Little wonder after presiding over the Special National Convention that saw to the ‘dismemberment’ of the PDP over the week end, Prof Jerry Gana held a Thanksgiving service at St. Mathew Anglican Church Abuja ,yesterday to thank God for the success(?) of the party's convention. I think success means a different thing to Prof Gana who has become the cat with nine lives in the Nigerian political terrain. Did he not say late July that PDP needs constant tension, maybe he is thanking God for the manifestation of that tension. According to him “I’m always worried when there is silence in the party because it is only in the grave you have constant silence. Wherever there is tension, there is progress.”
I have refrained from commenting on the infighting within the ruling party because everybody saw it coming. But after thinking it through, I do not think it is a bad thing to brood over. That’s why I will gladly join Prof. Gana in giving thanks to the good Lord because this trouble is for the good of Nigeria.