Buhari Is Not Synonymous With The North

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AKIN OSUNTOKUN: DIALOGUE WITH NIGERIA

First, my sympathies to Yusuf Buhari of whom I learnt from unimpeachable sources, is a sober and level headed guy contrary to the impression given by the circumstances of his unfortunate accident.

I pride myself in having a wide ranging circle of friends and family from the North. Among the publicly identified ones are Dangiwa Umar, Mahmud Tukur, Nuhu Ribadu, Nasir El Rufai, Aliko Dangote, Ibrahim Babangida, Kashim Imam, Awwal Tukur, Chubadu Modibbo, Mohammad Jibrin and the Emir of Kano. One of them is the closest confidante I have anywhere in the world. By inclination and intellectual persuasion I consider myself a Nigerian nationalist. In my considered opinion, anyone identified as a genuine Nigerian nationalist would and should have problems with President Mohammadu Buhari. So far as I can see, he has the richest credentials as a career and vocational Northern (or to be more exact) Fulani irredentist. It is quite difficult to separate the deepening ethnic division and hostility in contemporary Nigeria from the predilections of his incumbency. It has gotten to a stage where divisive politics has become so second nature to him that he has grown incapable of recognizing the obvious-where a divisive omission or commission stares every objective Nigerian in the face.

As the assault on Nigeria nationhood gathers pace it has become necessary to salvage whatever remains of our national bond with the disclaimer that there is a yawning distinction between opposition to Buhari and ethnicity spurred antagonism towards the North. On the template of the perennial ethnicity laden characteristic of Nigerian politics, I rate him the cleverest Nigerian politician. Like Donald Trump, the way his we versus them politics puts many Nigerian off is precisely the same measure with which he secures his blind followership. Addressing Nigeria in Hausa language during his prolonged hospitalization, for instance, is a calculated ploy to pander to his base and rouse their already overflowing defensive and clannish sympathy.

It is with extreme reluctance and concern that I criticize him-ever worrying lest such habitual criticism be misconstrued for antipathy towards the North. All it takes for the so called Fulani herdsmen reign of terror to subside is to borrow from a cultural virtue that was in conspicuous display during the presidency of Olusegun Obasanjo. It is called tough love. If a member of your family is engaged in an unseemly altercation with an outsider, you prioritize the admonition and rebuke of the former as a preferred and community ennobling strategy of conflict resolution. It did not endear him to the Yoruba and the Christian community but Nigerians would remember the overboard public display of Obasanjo’s red eye towards the Oodua Peoples Congress OPC and the Christian Association of Nigeria, CAN in plateau state re-‘anyone who calls himself OPC should be shot on sight’ and ‘CAN my foot’ to the latter in Jos.

The disappointment with Buhari is beyond measure. Emerging from the criminally weak leadership of President Goodluck Jonathan, Nigeria gave a messianic latitude to the incoming Buhari to exercise his famed strong moral leadership and he made a fiasco of it. His presidency would be remembered as a comprehensive exercise in self-demystification. Which other Nigerian President would be so obdurate and inciting (as) to appoint Dan Alli, Lawan Danbazzau, Babagana Monguno, Tukur Buratai, Ibrahim Idris, Lawal Daura and now Ahmed Abubakar as Minister of defence, Minister of interior, National security adviser, chief of Army staff, Inspector general of Police, Director general of the State security services and Director general of Nigeria intelligence agency? Regardless, I am by no means implying that he is without virtue. Even in the face of his brazen parochial nepotism and relative to the abysmal standard of public probity in Nigeria, his battered reputation for integrity is not without redeeming feature.

WITHER THE YORUBA PARTY

One abiding marker of Nigerian politics is the penchant for going round in circles. At independence in 1960, Nigeria started out with a multi-party political system comprising, in the main, three major political parties, namely the Action Group, AG, Northern Peoples’ Congress, NPC and the National Council of Nigerian citizens, NCNC. Individually they were the embodiment of the ethno regional nationalism of the three major ethnic groups of Yoruba, Hausa-Fulani and Ndigbo-within which territory they were the dominant parties.

Unlike the other two, the NCNC was distinguished by its Nigeria wide nationalistic origins. Until 1963 (when the Northern Cameroons in the Adamawa province, voted in a referendum to opt out of the Nigerian federation), the NCNC used to be the acronym for the National Council of Nigeria and the Cameroons. The party was specifically established as an instrument of prosecuting Nigerian nationalist struggle against British colonialism and was a competitive rival (against the AG) for political dominance in the Western region. Whereas the NPC and the AG originated and evolved as the political party arms of the Arewa and Yoruba ethno national unions.

The history of the Nigerian political party system is the chronology of the mutations of these parties in the second, third and fourth republics. In 1979, they transmuted into the National Party of Nigeria, NPN; Unity Party of Nigeria, UPN, and the Nigerian Peoples Party, NPP corresponding to the defunct Northern, Western and Eastern regions. This recurring tendency for the political parties to overlap regional identity is the political reality of Nigeria and constituted the premise for the prescription of the regionalist model of Nigerian federalism.

As argued by Chief Obafemi Awolowo “First, in any country where there are divergences of language and of nationality- particularly of language- a unitary constitution is always a source of bitterness and hostility on the part of linguistic or national minority groups. On the other hand, as soon as a federal constitution is introduced in which each linguistic or national group is recognized and accorded regional autonomy, any bitterness and hostility against the constitutional arrangement must disappear’.

How to reconcile this reality with the aspiration for Nigerian national integration is the crucial challenge of Nigerian politics. Since 1966, the tendency of the protracted rule of military dictatorship to seek to recreate Nigeria in its own image has resulted in the trend towards centralization and unification and the mismanagement of this challenge. As we have come to learn, the divergence from federalism has served many purposes other than the socio economic development of Nigeria. At the outbreak of the Nigerian civil war (and mistaking the symptom for the disease), starry eyed pan Africanist Nigerian intellectuals formulated the political problem of Nigeria as arising from the regional autonomy model of Nigerian federalism. They argued that the ample sizes and semi-autonomous status of the regions constituted a threat and disincentive to national integration-and thus provided the intellectual legitimation for the unification disposition of the military lawgivers.

Buyers beware, the road to hell is oftentimes paved with good intentions. The Nigerian nationalist ideology was germane to the successful prosecution of the civil war and the legitimation of the extra constitutional rule of military dictatorship. But the civil war and the allied military dictatorship are aberrations by definition and the political culture it spawned is not meant for adoption and perpetuation as a constitutional norm.

In their origins, there is a discernable echo of the NCNC of yore in the PDP. They both originated as pan Nigerian nationalist rally-the former against the British colonialists and the latter against the perpetuation of military dictatorship. Owing largely to circumstances beyond its control, the NCNC eventually ended as little more than the dominant party in the Igbo writ large Eastern region and the PDP has followed suit. The reduction of the two parties followed from a retreat from the South West-with the qualifier that whereas the NCNC was compelled to so retreat, the reduction of the PDP was the deliberate choice of the contemporary movers and shakers in the PDP.
Following from its ouster from power in 2015, the PDP has consistently suffered diminution-commensurate with its hobbled capacity to spread largesse. Borrowing a leaf from the playbook of how the APC mastered the politics of brinkmanship to outmaneuver former President Goodluck Jonathan, there was the fleeting hope that maybe the PDP can endure long enough to pay back the APC in its own coin in 2019. Any such hope was dashed by the coronation of Prince Uche Secondus as the new PDP king at its last national convention.

In order for there to be national balance inclusive of fostering a sense of belonging for the south west zone in the party, the chairmanship had been ceded to the zone. The contrary decision to so deprive the zone of the chairmanship amounted to the effective belittling of the party to the demarcations of the defunct Eastern region. The significance of this development resides in how it is complemented and enhanced by the equivalent decline in the fortunes of the south west in the ruling national coalition. On account of the casual relegation of the south west and a corresponding overcompensation and ascendance of the Moslem North in the APC, the party has been reshaped to effectively become the Hausa Fulani dominant party.

This development has logically prompted political introspection among the Yoruba on how best to chart a course going forward. Coincidentally there is new found opportunity in the pervasive dissatisfaction with the APC controlled federal government-opening up the party to a successful challenge in the forthcoming 2019 elections. A beckoning vacuum has thereby emerged both at the level of forging a credible SPV for challenging the APC and at the level of securing a political sanctuary for the south west.

This political market forces of demand and supply has precipitated a flurry of activities directed at floating a third party. Following from the tradition of the three pronged regional party default mode, any realistic prospect for the emergence of a third party will be predicated on its utility to provide political sanctuary for a stranded Yoruba electorate. The most important personality in the APC, President Buhari has already issued a persona non grata to the advocacy of restructuring-effectively ruling out his party as a sanctuary for the topmost priority of the Yoruba. By this happenstance, Nigeria has all but reverted to its regional party system default mode.

  • LEGACY

    The writer should encourage Yoruba to contest for the chairmanship of the APC. Are they not yet satisfied with the V.P position? I assure you that very soon the Yoruba will understand that trickery is not ‘sophistication’ in politics. The decision to take away the chairmanship of the PDP previously zoned to the southwest from them is well advised. They would have only used it to negotiate their way further in APC, using a threat to move to PDP if the North fail to share power with them.
    The Yoruba have never been interested in any political alliance with other southerners. They only desire it when the North cheats them out of power sharing. At this stage they have a option which is to be in APC and support Buhari even if he turns them into a doormat or else they should be ready to count their many losses. Their teaming up with the North against other southerners was just to have undue advantage over others. Like the Northerners, they do not believe in fairness. They prefer unjust and lope-sided sharing of the so called national cake. But unfortunately for them, the North does not believe in power sharing with anyone. They have subtly come back to talk about restructuring. The difference between the Yoruba and the North is little (just the level of education): they both thrive on government patronage and they abhor fairness and are also afraid of competition.
    It is better for the former eastern region to have control of PDP, at least they would have the opportunity of getting their preferred candidates as governors and legislators even if they do not have control of power at the centre, which they can still get anyway. Yoruba should not expect to reap in PDP where they have not sown. The chairmanship position is vital in securing nominations for part positions. They will soon realise that if they do not play ball like Akintola of those days the Hausa/Fulani will get their stooges into the elective offices in the south west states. The history of Nigeria which for years has been in the making will soon be written.
    Stay tuned!

  • Mystic mallam

    Mr Akin Osuntokun is a clear-headed critique and analyst of the Nigerian condition. But he’s a poor defender of the Yoruba tendency to spike its own interests in order to spite others. Akin, please stick with advocating a structural systemic change of Nigeria, you’re the best at that; you can’t explain the strange choices that the Yoruba make at every turn of Nigeria’s history.

  • RumuPHC

    The most important take- away of all in this article:

    “The disappointment with Buhari is beyond measure. Emerging from the criminally weak leadership of President Goodluck Jonathan, Nigeria gave a messianic latitude to the incoming Buhari to exercise his famed strong moral leadership and he made a fiasco of it. His presidency would be remembered as a comprehensive exercise in self-demystification“ .

    Thank you Mr Akin Osuntokun!

    We brought GEJ and he failed . We replaced GEJ with PMB and PMB has equally failed . I suppose the critical issue before Nigerians is the search for a real good leader.

    Unfortunately it is less than 9 months to decision time. Yet Nigerians continue to bicker on less important issues while the incumbent PMB appear to be on pole position for the race ahead .

    God save Nigeria !

  • Ken Atigari

    Akin you play with words when you write:
    “criminally weak leadership of President Goodluck Jonathan”

    What exactly do you mean? Do you mean?

    -Weak leadership is criminal? or
    -Criminality of the leadership is what weakened it? or
    -The leadership was criminal and weak?

    Ok let’s try this play of words
    “nepotistically strong leadership of President Buhari”

  • James Gunn

    Buhari is simply a senile demented fellow. The question all sane Nigerians should ask them selves is this: When the National Security Council meets and the minister of Defense, the minister of the interior, the director of the Dss (internal) the director of the Nia (external) the IG of police, the chief of army staff, the Efcc chairman, the attorney general of the federation and the National security advisor sits down to discuss security issues of the entire country with the president and everybody in that meeting are all from one region of the country, how in all that is good can they come up with intricate, incisive and pan national solutions to the security challenges of the entire nation.

  • Owo

    Ethnic parties can’t win the presidency or the national assembly. You may call the Yoruba traitors or hate them with a passion but you can’t fault their reading of Nigerian politics. The southwest wanted the PDP chairmanship in order to steer the platform for a truly federal constitution and a market economy. They know too well that they don’t deserve the vice presidency as much as the Igbo, who in all fairness should succeed a northern president, and that it isn’t smart to copy the APC ticket. The surest path to a PDP win in 2019 would’ve been a northern minority/Igbo ticket. That way, the PDP would win by large margins in the northcentral, southeast and southsouth and by a decent margin in the southwest. For those that can’t see things from other people’s view, February 2019 isn’t far.

  • Nnaemeka Odo

    The writer as far as I am concerned is guilty of ethnic bias by insinuating that only a Yoruba PDP chairman is desired to ressurect the party.

  • Curious One

    How to criticize GEJ: “He is corruption incorporated, clueless, weak”

    How to criticize PMB: “ GEJ’S failure brought him on us, the people around him are bad, he is not totally bad”

    It’s called being economical with the truth

    • KWOY

      CURSE IS PALCED ON THE YORUBA RACE! Buhari is just the beginning!

    • share Idea

      You have made my day. Nigeria we hail thee

  • Jon West

    Barely three years after changing their political business model from opposition to participatory malfeasance, the self-acclaimed most educated and smartest ethnic political tendency is back I reset me, shopping for another opposition platform. However, they must harken to a paraphrase of the Shakespearean admonition that “The fault, my fellow countrymen in not in your stars but in yourselves, that you are permanent political underlings and oppositionists”.

    The history of this current descent to political frustration by the Yoruba politcal elite is really embeded in the story of the relationship between the Yoruba Traditional Army Commander ,Are Ona Kakanfo Afonja and the Fulani interloper Alimi, in 19th century Ilorin, which led to the unbelievable situation, where Ilorin, populated 95% by Yoruba people, since than and currently has a Fulani Emir and a Fulani political elite that calls the shots in the state. Treachery appears to be in the DNA of a genus of the Yoruba and I challenge anybody to a factfest.
    Treachery is a human weakness and exists in any ethnicity, race or even family. However, while some people, like the Biblical Judas Iscariot, were swayed by pecuniary temptations for filthy lucre, the Yoruba traitor betrays mostly for spite, therefore ensuring that he/she is collateral damage for the treachery.

    Perhaps sociologists can delve deeper into this self-imolating complex of this very clever but underachieving ethnicity. Afonja betrayed Aalafin Aole to the Fulani interloper Alimi and the enraged Aalafin put a curse on him and the Yoruba people, a curse that seems to have permanent currency. Since that initial betrayal, there has always been an Afonja and Alimi, in most Yoruba/Fulani political interactions.
    In the first Republic, Afonja was Ladoke Akintola and Alimi was Ahmadu Bello, and the betrayal was to spite Awolowo.
    As the Biafran war loomed , Awo, hitherto the victim of treacherous spite, became the Afonja to Gowons( actually Murtala Mohammed) Alimi and the rest is history. Then came other Afonjas- Abiola, Shonekan, Diya, Obasanjo and now Bola Ahmed Tinubu with Buhari as the current Alimi. The circumstances of the treachery are all similar and rooted in spite.

    Akin Osutokun, you are a master political strategist of the Awo school and you must also know that men repeat history and then blame history for repeating itself. There must be a lot of soul searching among the Yoruba, arguably the most liberal ,and therefore perhaps the cleverest ethnic group in Nigeria, about the tendency to betray their real interests for reasons of spite, when dealing with other Nigerians. Sometimes, in my periods of introspection, I wonder why the Yoruba seem content with the slum that is Lagos, instead of the natural entrepôt and tropical Dubai that is its locational advantage, just because the Igbo and other Nigerians have even worse slums. Why are the Yoruba allowing their manifest advantages to be subsumed by failure ,engendered by a propensity for spiteful interactions with themselves and others? The answer is again, blowing in the wind.

    • KWOY

      Up you!!!

      • Jon West

        That’s for sure. You cant fight genetics. Treachery is in their DNA.

    • Michael Kadiri SocioPolitical

      “If an offense come out of the truth, better is it that the offense come than that the truth be concealed.”
      ― Thomas Hardy, Tess of the D’Urbervilles

      • Jon West

        Thanks for understanding.

  • KWOY

    The only sense I can make out of all these is that at the end of the day everybody will answer his father’s name! And that is the ultimate resolution of all these rotation in circles since 1960! Nigeria has NO reason in the world to be ONE! And it can NEVER be one country! And meanwhile, vicious narrative on Jonathan will not enhance the fortunes of the SW; it can only be an attempt to drag someone down along with! As I always say, with 2015, the SW (& nigeria to some extent) will never be the same again!

    As for 2019, the road is closed. Just forget it!

    • Curious One

      You nailed it !

  • Sarah

    Akin, why are you dithering like a philosopher waiting for a King to emerge from wherever to lead you and the rest of the Yoruba? Why not step forward and provide leadership yourself?
    The most urgent task confronting all of us that believe in Nigeria as one united indivisible nation is to ensure that Buhari/Osinbajo are voted out in 2019.
    We the Yoruba cannot count on Tinubu to provide leadership, he is too embedded with Buhari to see the crisis our country is hurtling into.
    As you have alluded, we need the emergence of an alternative leadership to guide the SW/Yoruba into another credible coalition with like-minded compatriots from other regions and wrest power from Buhari/Osinbajo. Obasanjo, Yaradua and Jonathan all defeated Buhari when they led credible coalitions against him, notwithstanding our political process. We can do it again.
    Why are you waiting for a King to emerge? Stop dithering, consult (especially OBJ), take action and the Yoruba will follow.

  • Olisa Chukwuma

    Evaluating northern tendencies by the deposition of your statistically insignificant close knit circle of friends is as pointless as significant parts of your article.

  • FrNinja

    The yoruba should teach the story of Afonja and Alimi in all its classrooms. It epitomises what happens when you pit the standard character of the Yoruba elite (opportunism and treachery) with the characteristic of the Fulani elite (political domination).

    Tinubu is the new Afonja who in all his greed thought he would ride an old warhorse Buhari to power at the center and grab all the bounties that power brought. Unfortunately, the old general is teaching Tinubu and his ACN a lesson in realpolitik.

    As for the whole restructuring debacle. The Fulani-dominated North will never restructure Nigeria without a war. They will loot all its resources and use that to implant themselves in impregnable positions of power for the long run.

    • Iskacountryman

      realpolitik?…i see, you have read the book…

      • Intrepid

        War, war, war, the outcome is not always the way you think. Ask Hitler. BTW it might not be a one-sided bush war, like the one that makes you brag all the time.

        • Iskacountryman

          okay…we de wait…

  • Darcy

    Sir, you undermine your own thesis; having lambasted the President for parochialism, surely then, this–“Which other Nigerian President would be so obdurate and inciting (as) to appoint Dan Alli, Lawan Danbazzau, Babagana Monguno, Tukur Buratai, Ibrahim Idris, Lawal Daura and now Ahmed Abubakar …–should have no place in your write up.

    You ought to have analysed their performance, then critiqued the retention of the underwhelming as ethnic pandering. The Minister for defence for example seems on the surface at least to have run a competent ship–army gains, no scandals– unlike the rampant failure of the Minister of Interior. The failure to mark that distinction ends up showing you up to be everything you condemn in the President. They should be fired for their lack of competence, not their last name!

    Re Chief Awolowo’s constant utterances of laws, easily refuted by more than baseline knowledge of History outside the Anglo-World, I point you to France. Bet you’ve never heard of their minorities, precisely! Italy too, queue Nigerians ignoring history until 1870 to say, they’re all Italians! Shame on shame, even Ghana has managed to plow ahead of us despite the Genius of the West telling us it’s impossible.

    The so called ethnic groups and traditional Rulers of Nigeria lost whatever claim to legitimacy they had when they were trounced like children by the British. When one reads of the resistance of the Maoris or the Afghan tribes, one can barely hold back disgust at the easy capitulation of the groups and people who we, educated we, ought to know better than to glorify.

    Congratulations, after 57 years, we’ve managed to transfer the incompetence of those groups to what was a clean slate. Bravo.

    • Mayo

      The writer has no ‘specific’ complaint about the Minister of Defence vs the Interior Minister. He is simply saying that Buhari should have spread the appointment of these key defence ministries across the different regions unless you’re saying there are no other capable and qualified hands from other regions. So going by your example, if the Minister of Defence is doing so well, then one of the other Ministers should have come from somewhere else. To even buttress the writers point, Buhari just appointed the NIA DG a few days ago, and he was from the same region as all the others.

      • Darcy

        That makes no sense. “Spreading” is the ethnicsism he bemoans.

        How do you people not see that. You either care where people are from or you care about the job they’re doing. It cannot be both.

        The problem is that people are doing a bad job, not their last name!

  • Michael Kadiri SocioPolitical

    My deep prayers for Yusuf Buhari.

    But sober and level headed guys don’t go power bike racing in the city centre.

    I don’t understand the double speak I sometimes read from Nigerian journalists.

    You do not need your great Northern friends to tell you how wonderful Yusuf is as a person.

    In the spirit of humanity, we can all wish him well and speedy recovery. But when he gets back to full health, we can also ask him what he was doing racing a power bike with his fellow rich and entitled friends and endangering themselves and more importantly the public.

    And the sight of the Senate President, many Governors and top political and civil leadership leaving their work to troup to his bedside was quite nauseating.

    • Lawrenece Ifo

      You will be doing well by asking him those questions but some of my friends from the North (I can also drop names) told me that the most important question they will ask him is to explain to them if what they heard in the press about the price of power bike is true and how he managed to lay hand on such amount of money in this era of anti “kworruption” and as the son of Mr integrity?
      I think that EFCC should be closer to him even in his hospital bed based on the intending questions from my friends from the North for such unjust enrichment.Unless if this type of law is only applicable to so called Jonathan and fourth thieves.

    • Iskacountryman

      did he wear a helmet as mandated by law, was he riding within speed limits?…if not, i would prosecute him …for breaking the law…

  • Don Franco

    Dear Dr. Akintola Osuntokun:

    With your last paragraph in this article, it is becoming difficult to not wonder whether your own Mummu want start? Are you saying that the SW wasn’t aware that Buhari and the entire North are against restructuring, before, during and after formation of the APC?

    Pray tell, since when has the SW taken the issue of restructuring serious enough for it to be a reason for them to not have a political sanctuary in the APC under the Certificateless Daura Dullard? In all honesty what political, electoral value would a SW PDP Chairman have brought to the 2019 election? The answer is zero, because Tinubu and all his illegal disobedient children (Oyegun; Fayemi, Fashola, Ajimobi, and Amonsu) are all in the APC. This translates into an egregious lack of political critical mass for the Yoruba to form any “third party” within eleven months to challenge either “their” APC or the PDP. How any political scientist lecturer cannot see this is beyond me; Mummuness must be in the details.

    • KWOY

      Who says the SW wants restructuring?

      • Fowad

        South-West want restructuring like yesterday. They have many representatives clamouring for autonomy everywhere. Then of course if granted they can deploy their god-given talents to solve their local problems. Have you not noticed?

        • share Idea

          It depends on the SW. The real SW wants restructuring while vocal cabal controlled by Tinubu does not, as long as he controls power in APC – personal gain

  • Grelia O

    I agree that PDP Chairmanship zoned to the SW would have been good for the party.
    However, SW PDP blew its chance in the Chairmanship election by fielding multiple candidates. There should have been a consolidation going in.

    Having said that, the SW can still play a significant role in PDP going forward. Party Chairmanship or other positions is not as important as the platform. With Buhari and his party in opposition to the the Yoruba agenda of restructuring, PDP becomes attractive because (1) the same agenda is popular in the SS, SE, and NC. (2) If the SW leverages the leadership position ceded to it by the entire South on restructuring through its adoption of the SW’s Ibadan Declaration, and participate actively in PDP’s recruitment of a strong Northern candidate with a credible restructuring credential, the 2019 presidential election would be an easy win. Buhari and APC will lose the SW, and will not sweep the NC.

    The next Executive and Legislature should be able to introduce meaningful changes one way or the other. An eventual level playing field which will ultimately guarantee some autonomy for the SW to move at its pace will trump mere party Chairmanship or even the Presidency.

  • obinnna77

    To be fair to the old Fula, all his predecessors played this game of ‘reversion to trusted hands’. He just took it to new heights. In view of what befell him in his first outing, the palace coup, it is understandable that he places loyalty above all else. As to his worldview, well, it is what it is. Only a Northern Kemal Ataturk, one that will grab it by the scruff of the neck, and bring it, and by extension, Niger-area, kicking and screaming, into the current century, will do. If you can fathom the preconditions that are necessary for the rise of such a man, then you may consider that your ‘Nigerian nationalist’ toga is utopian. And this herder-farmer business, being handled with such complacency, may undo the contraption quicker than its expected slow demise in tandem with the demise of big Oil. Remember Major Orkar and his motley crew? His people had far less cause then, than the sight of 72 coffins in Makurdi. Enough said.

    • KWOY

      Your rationalisations for Buahri’s nepotism cannot be proven! I disagree

  • Iskacountryman

    this is an exercise in pedestrian logic…so if the yaribas do not occupy the position of chairman of pdp, it automatically becomes an eastern party?…all politics are local – how many states would a yariba pdp chairman deliver to the pdp?…the swest is hunting grounds for 25% of votes…period…you gambled with the apc…now enjoy the change…

    • American Abroad

      To paraphrase Nnamdi Azikiwe, when asked by Obafemi Awolowo to accompany him on a funereal visit to the family of the late Sir Louis Mbanefo: The Iskacountryman of 2017 is not the same as the Iskacountryman of 2018.
      As a matter of fact, SE, SS and NW are already “decided” territory; the battle is strictly limited to the SW, NW and NC. A better electoral strategy would be nominating a Presidential candidate from the NW or NC and his Vice-Presidential running-mate from the SW.
      But the PDP had better look beyond the dissolute Jonathan or any member of his merry band of 40 thieves. A word should be enough for the Not-Too-Wise.

      • Daniel Obior

        Come on now. What hes Jonathan got to do with this when he is not running? You sure love to hit him with any opportunity.

        • American Abroad

          No, Sir.
          No more “cutting slack”. We simply seem to forget each penultimate (last but one) lesson each time we learn a brand-new lesson. Almost as if we can’t hold more than a single idea in our collective heads.
          From Jonathan’s tenure, we learnt we do not want timidity and carte blanche looting of our patrimony. From Buhari, we have learnt we do not like injustice, nepotism and gratuitous violence. We should have learnt from Yar’Adua that we do not want infirm Presidents; and from Obasanjo, that we detest Babacracy (unconstitutional government by the “All-Knowing One”).
          Jonathan was not the only executive thief, but he is the most recent (and youngest, and best educated). So what was the point of all that education if you will only become a common thief?

          • Fidelis A.

            Totally agree…….. With respect to your permutations for the electoral contest, the PDP should be wise to get their candidate either from the NE or NC while the vice should emerge from the South West. They should not consider any candidate from the Northwest, it will be a complete waste of time, it’s already a decided matter.

            Great new year to you sir. Regards.

          • Toby

            Means that Nigeria is to be permanently ruled by north and south west. At what point will the permutation change? Donald Trump just called us shitholers in a shithole country.

          • Cytosine.

            And the south east is never a variable in the permutations.

          • share Idea

            Our time will come.

          • Cytosine.

            They are delaying the coming of the Messiah.

          • Jon West

            Our Jerusalem is somewhere else. We do not need to swim in a cesspool with the unrighteous of Nigeria. We shall get to our Jerusalem later. Let Nigerians rule their country and kill it, then we shall be free.

          • share Idea

            Unfortunately that is what Nigeria has become. All those noise about GEJ stealing or allowing corruption is just majorly a ruse to ensure that power returned to North.

            NE person winning will at least satisfy one demand, power rotating, than allowing NW to win

          • The Duke

            And that is exactly what would happen, two candidates would slug it out, one from NE and one from NC at the primaries, they would pair with a SW candidate. the NW will stick to their man, he has done them well.

          • share Idea

            Again I agree with you on the permutation.

            I once said it on one of the forum that PDP decided not to give the party chairmanship to SW because the VP would be coming from them, and that it would not go well for PDP to give them party chairmanship and zone the VP to other zone.

          • American Abroad

            Nigeria will surely have a chance to make amends, come 2019.
            However, I fear we might not choose the opportunity: we have often contrived to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.
            Still, have a Great and Insightful New Year. You remain one of the few oases of commonsense hereabouts.

          • Daniel Obior

            Still Jonathan had nothing to do with the issue since he was not running.
            This is a case of ” bad belle”.

          • American Abroad

            Certainly an interesting, if rather inane take on my commentary.
            Jonathan’s mendacious shadow as one of the worst-ever Presidents in Nigeria’s sad history looms beyond Buhari and 2019.
            Bad Belle? Is that based on your personal knowledge of me- or just shooting the breeze, Nigerian style?

          • Daniel Obior

            Facts do not support your false claim that he is the worst ever. To put him below Abacha and Buhari, for instance, reveals the “bad belle” syndrome. You risk being taken seriously, with such outlandish claim.

        • Fidelis A.

          Dear Daniel, there wouldn’t have been a Buhari if Jonathan did his job as expected of him. I share the same sentiment with American Abroad on this. I am yet to Pardon him for his feeble minded performance.

          • okbaba

            My brother, feeble in not protecting the loot while being shared amongst all and strength in protecting the loot for a very tiny few. The hunger in the streets does not understand big grammer.

          • Fidelis A.

            On this sir, I am in agreement with you. While Jonathan commercialized corruption, Buhari has succeeded in privatizing corruption in the hands of a few, his cronies, family members, clans men, which is why we have so much hunger in the land. Comparatively choosing, I will settle for the Jonathan model. We are in deep trouble in this country. Goodluck to you all.

          • share Idea

            Now the scale has fallen off your eyes. GEJ democratised both corruption and politics by increasing the scope of participation. Hence, the cabal were not happy that the people they called ‘ordinary Nigerians’ knew the inner workings of government.

            Now, Buhari have succeeded in reverting back to status quo where only Dangote, Tinubu, Emirs, Ubah’s could be the only people accessing the national largess either in the form of subsidy, oil allocation and other secretive opportunities.

          • karlheinzbergemann@yahoo.com

            Corruption corruption!!! Please make we hear word jare!!! It was already commercialised before jonathan and pdp. The corruption monster started right before independence. It was only among a very few persons who were connected to the oyibos who ruled (kidnapping and. Selling of slaves for mirror spices and rum and later their kids selected to study abroad). After independence it was contained still by the champions of independence (in the north south east and west) . The khaki boys struck and started making it a commodity for all Fast foward today: Corruption is with us , living with us and in us and has become oxygen that we breathe . If you doubt check ur educational system
            …corrupt. health. ….corrupt….security ….corrupt. commerce…..corrupt. should I go on? Even family…..corrupt. bro. It’s been here all along but today it’s now Nigeria Corruption plc. Headquarters. .Asorock. Abuja. Branches in all states of Nigeria. Liason offices in all homes in nigeria. It has become a way of life that lies and cheating is no more counted as corruption. Extortion is now celebrated as being smart. Now corruption in Nigeria comes on all shades public private anywhere anyhow. But it all started before you and I were born.

          • naijamustbegreat

            Spot on. Its challenging when GEJ is the only one being called out. How did we get our Massions on the hill top? How did we get our Shonibare estate in Maryland, Lagos? The list is endless. Show me the factory or business owned by any BIG man in Nigeria?

          • Daniel Obior

            I like your logic. Please tell this to your friend the American Abroad. He is more likely to believe you than the rest of us, as he sees you as one of the few oases of common sense in this forum.

          • Nkem Okike

            Please Jonathan did not commercialize corruption in this country. Perhaps a few details from U on how he did commercialize corruption will do.

          • Daniel Obior

            Agree. But also there wouldn’t have been a Buhari if all other heads of state did the job expected of them. Jonathan had his weakness as well as other heads of state. At the end of the day, he had more to show than the rest, since the first republic. Do learn to forgive him for that.

          • KWOY

            Nigeria has always been a whirlpool of immorality & satanism since ist amalgamation for immoral reasons. This is why it cannot celebrate GOODNESS even when it RECOGNISES it. Femi Orebe has defined their standard of a good leader in THENATION Newspapers (starting from December 17, 2017 -January 2018). But a curse is placed on nigeria from 2015! The evil forces who define good by their dark standards will get what they want. Buhari is just the beginning!

          • karlheinzbergemann@yahoo.com

            Stop blaming jonathan for the reason to enthrone buhari. It was nigerians that decided. At least we are all aware of the lies APC and buhari and the north sold nigeria to take back power with negotiations with so called leaders from the east west and south. We are all testifying to the fact that all programs of jonathan and pdp government started is what the present government continues to take credit for. The corruption that is so endemic in nigeria that we were made to believe had increased under jonathan was all lies because a group that were milking the country had no access to the free money again. My brother it was nigerians that resurrected buhari because they believed a lie and got disillusioned

          • femi

            I blame everything on OBJ who installed pulpits he wanted to be controlling from Otta, just because he was unable to accomplish his third term bid.

        • BB

          “Jonathan ran a band of thieves. So too did all other heads of state.”….the ‘he-without-sin-cast-the-first-stone’ mentality is part of the major problems we face in Nigeria. The ‘anger’ a lot of Nigerians feel towards our thieving looting leaders is in-fact not anger but jealousy. Dear Mr Obior, your response sounds very much like you are not concerned about the fact that GEJ ran a band of thieves, your concern is that Buhari should be called a thief also….sad

          • share Idea

            Please answer me this question truthfully. If you are member of criminal armed gang that raided a bank in the night, and the following day when people woke up, one of the gang members (who leads the security agencies) called your name to the public and said that you masterminded the stealing, and that he would make sure that you and other people that participated in the robbery should be sanctioned.

            Not done, he sent police to be ransacking your house looking for your share of the loot, and when any of your family or friends that knew about the people that participated in robbery reported to the police that the person making public statement was also involved with his cousins, and that they share of the loots are in their houses. What you get from police after the people is absolute silence but they keep taking newspaper advert to discredit you and your family.

            What will be your reaction in the above scenario?

          • Daniel Obior

            I respectfully suggest you read my comment again to comprehend my perspective.

      • Iskacountryman

        the battle is strictly between the sw, ne and nc?…that might be the case…but for us…a fula would win the election…with or without the se and sw…just for the record..i am a card carrying die hard pdp stalwart…

        • American Abroad

          As you might have guessed from reading any of my comments, I care very little about the ethnicity or regional ancestry or even the religious persuasion(s)- if any -of our next President. I simply seek a competent, insightful, hardworking, well-educated, fair-minded, reasonably honest person to occupy the highest office in the land. That would be, if you would pardon me, a first for Nigeria. The rest of his/her demographics are details- or mere bagatelles.

          • Iskacountryman

            “a competent, insightful, hardworking, well-educated, fair-minded, reasonably honest person to occupy the highest office in the land”…we do not have time for dreamers…i can assure you that the next president of nigeria would be from the north…

      • Dele Awogbeoba

        Actually, the NE,NW, SS and SE are all “decided” territories. NC is decided as well in a very different way. Around 43% like Buhari and around 46% have confirmed dislike for him with the rest undecided (re NOIPOLLS). The SW is the very fluid territory at the current time. Where ever it goes in overwhelming numbers wins. If it is split in a way similar to the NC, then Buhari wins because the combined vote of the NW, NE dwarfs to the combined votes of the SE and SS.

    • Lawrenece Ifo

      You just nailed it with that rhetorical question.
      Let me just add by saying that he exposed his underlying primordial intent by cleverly,trying to mask their own interests as “Nigeria nationalist ideology” but seem to be shy when it comes to giving us a brief details of the precise objective acts and decisions he used as a parameter to qualify such nationalist ideal.That is the problem ofor the zoo.
      The word Unity and nationalist have been reduced to mere preference-systematising devices as nobody wants to give any content to it in the Nigeria contextual environment.

      In addition,how he can conveniently veer-off and descend on Jonathan labelling him to be “criminally weak” is mind-boggling.
      Where as the evidence of so called strength which they so much cherished is what Buhari have exhibited but still, people like him are still whining in their closet.
      May be,as one of the OBJ’s lackey and covert intellectual hit man, he cannot stomach the fact that Jonathan decided to be his own man and vehemently,refused to be used to widen and deepen the animosity between the SS/SS through targeted policies as they depended on that wedge for the continuous survival of the zoo in the absence of any common social consciousness which can incentivize the people to buy into the Nigeria project.

      So what do they want,if they cannot accept the raw strength of Buhari which he demonstrated by giving every position to his people whereas Jonathan was adjudged to be criminally weak for having an unexisting Pan Nigeria out look or let me say “a statesman without a state” in out look.

    • Mystic mallam

      Iska, what has happened to you…did you see any flashing lights in the darkness of night?

      • Iskacountryman

        i keep telling you…i have adaeze on my mind…

        • Mystic mallam

          Next thing I hear, Iska has converted to Christianity, dangerous.

          • Iskacountryman

            you are a very dangerous person…