Election 2015: Before the cookie crumbles

We should not look back, unless it is to derive useful lessons from past errors and for the purpose of profiting by dearly brought experience —– George Washington

IF any one prophesied to APC kingpins of ‘Change’ this time last December, that they would still be involved in planning to win the 2015 elections,by end of February this year, they would have responded with ‘get thee behind me Satan’ to such a prophecy. But as we say in typical pidgin English: ‘cunning man die, cunning man buri am‘. The Igbos say that you cannot be taller than me and the same time shorter than me.

The APC knows how to and have almost perfected the game of intimidation, shouting, and hounding their victim to accept and cave in to their plans, but the PDP, has mastered the game of fixing situations, and climbing out to prevail. The lesson here is, that rabbit, which the APC has been pursuing all over the place in the cave, the PDP has custody of its children, and better understands the rabbit’s routes in that cave. The essence of these proverbs is to bring home to the APC that it is not enough to shout, harass and issue threats to win an election, it is better to always let things flow in a peaceful and healthy atmosphere.

In elections 2015, the players may be very skilled , but the people are determined to see that INEC the referee, remains unbiased to the end. After all, this is neither a government of a retired General, who must either win or kill, nor do we have a President who believes in do or die politics. For the first time, in our experience with democracy, we have a President in GEJ, who believes in the right and power of the people to choose their leader, in a free, fair, and non-violent atmosphere. And with him on the saddle, we seem to be arriving at that point, where the vote of Nigerians will matter and determine the results in elections.

Since the 2011 election that made him our President, he has improved our election culture, reducing violence to minimal levels.

It should be a matter of serious civic and moral responsibility and duty therefore, for us all to ensure that 2015 elections remain free, fair, rigging free, and non-violent to the letter, in order for us all to take a good advantage of the civilized platform GEJ has provided for credible elections.

Before the 28th March, when the cookie will surely crumble, we must continue to look into our past in order to learn not to repeat bad mistakes and errors we made, so as create in the end, a good culture, of peaceful, and non-violent elections in our beloved country.

The test for APC’s maturity and subsequent qualification for entry into Aso Rock, lies in how they will handle failure in the 2015 elections. This is more so because APC as presently constituted appears in the main, to be a waste bag of the ruling PDP, with mostly renegades, unfaithful and therefore unreliable party carpet crossers and some never do wells from the PDP. Yes, we indeed need positive changes in the way we are governed, but we cannot afford to jump from the frying pan into fire. We dearly need to tame the monster of corruption in our nation, but we cannot afford to go back to our vomit, neither do we have to cut our nose to spite our face.

Just like a virgin has no business in a maternity ward, APC cannot fight corruption with their list of very corrupt kingpins! Who are they trying to deceive? God forbid!

Before 28th March, GEJ and his teams, need to roll up their sleeves, get to work, and do a good campaign, reaching out to all sections of Nigeria with their appeals, and proofs of what they have done and are promising to do in the next term.

Quickly and within the next three weeks, first, the task to flush Boko Haram from our soil must have to be accomplished conclusively.Our brave, highly skilled, reliable, tried , tested and trusted Military should flush the insurgents first, and leave us thereafter, to get clean wet towels to wipe the faces of weeping opposition men and haters of peace in Nigeria.

Second, all sharp and smart eyes must be on INEC , for nearly scuttling this Presidency, and plunging us into a war, should we have voted on February 14th. It will be fool hardy to leave INEC to itself now. The twin troubling issues of child voting in the north, and differential methods of distribution of PVCs between the north and the south need to be dealt with real quick. Why should traditional rulers in the south queue up to pick up their PVCs, while their colleagues in the north are responsible for distributing the PVCs, if not a well-planned rigging method ? No sacred cows, let INEC be in charge, and do the job they have been paid for by Nigeria. All holes must be plugged now before it becomes too late.

One sure way to goad Nigeria into electoral violence is to keep soldiers out of certain areas where violence will surely take place. In Lagos State for example, many will be discouraged to come out to vote, because of fear of the use of area boys to foment trouble around polling areas, especially in non-indigene dominated areas around Ojo, Ejigbo, Okota, Ajegunle, Amuwo Odofin, to name a few. Soldiers should help in these areas, and in all the states where the President’s campaign team was attacked in the north, including other violence flash points like Rivers , and Ogun States, where anything can happen in March.

Also the INEC Electronic Card Readers need to be double checked for efficiency now, before they are used to derail the elections.

Nigerians still trust and love GEJ, he has no reasons not to come out with a clear victory on the 28th March, except he undoes himself .

Mr. Clement Udegbe, a legal practitioner, wrote from Lagos.

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