Some hours ago, on the inside of my house, I was watching a program on television and the video of what the chairman of the APC said during their last NEC meeting was played for the whole world to see and hear. Adams said and I quote, “It’s better for a ‘devil’ in our party to win than for an ‘angel’ to win in the opposition party.” It’s clear as water that political parties come before the nation. The last person on their minds is the common man; that is if they think about him at all.
Politicians do not care a hoot about the quality of the person, who wins an election— as long as the person is representing their self-centric-interests, flying the flag of their self-serving political party. A politician can verbally attack another politician, who is in the opposition party today and tomorrow, he would present same man as an angel, provided he joins his political party. This is why El Rufai and Bola Tinubu would drag GMB in the mud before joining the APC and after joining the APC, he was presented to Nigerians as the best in the history of Nigeria. Those who rely on what politicians tell them do not understand a hoot—our version of politics.
Another crucial issue that is bedeviling both our politics and polity is—lack of continuity within the context of our governance.
Government they say is a continuum, but not in our own clime. In one of the States in our country, a governor got to power, instead of continuing from where his predecessor stopped, he decided to destroy almost everything he met on ground and went ahead to lay off virtually everyone who worked with the man who occupied the office he stepped into. After four years in office, he was voted out, becoming history. Today, another person is in power, calling the shots of that State.
A few days ago, driving round the State I am penning about, looking at some of the projects the immediate past governor of the State I am talking on spent heavily on, I shook my head, seeing some of them already gasping for—lungful of air. If the current man in power chooses to look the other way, then Lagosians are going to suffer for it and saying that government is a continuum will make no sense.
In Ogun State, I expect Dapo Abiodun to continue from where Ibikunle Amosun stopped. Take for instance; the bridge constructed at “Alagbole” by the administration of Amosun is no longer a blessing to those dwelling in that area. Ibikunle started it, but he ended up not finishing it. If government is really a continuum and it’s truly about serving the people, Abiodun is expected to finish that shameful-bridge, so that the poor man living in that area can stop cursing those in the corridors of power in Ogun State.
While I do know that no one looks for political-power to serve anyone in Nigeria, the poor man also is very ignorant and benighted when it comes to issues of governance and nation building in our clime. When an administration starts a project and the one that comes after it finishes it, it is the poor people of Nigeria that would be exchanging ‘e-blows’ on social media on—who takes credit for the completed-project. If a man comes to power and he doesn’t start new projects, but chooses to finish what the one before him starts, Nigerians will say he hasn’t done anything. Nigerians need to understand that a politician doesn’t need to start new projects for him to become successful in office. In, fact, the fastest link to true development in Nigeria is—when we develop the culture of finishing incomplete projects—that were started decades ago.
This is where I am coming. Last week, Garba Shehu said that Nigerians should stop the habit of blaming Buhari for everything that happens in Nigeria. This is probably the second time he would say that, this year. But the truth is, when Goodluck was in power and the APC was an opposition political party, Azikiwe was blamed for everything that transpired in Nigeria. He was called all kind of names. He was dragged in the mud. They took him to the cleaners. They told us that the only man standing on the way of—constant supply of electricity, good roads and rock-solid economy in Nigeria was Goodluck Ebele Jonathan.
And for the first four (4) years of baba’s first term in office, Goodluck was blamed for almost everything that happened—long after he left power for his village. Professional-politicians in our clime enjoy using him to score cheap political points and naïve Nigerians daily cheer them on. Please understand that I am not writing to praise Goodluck for the unimpressive and mediocre way he led Nigeria when he was on the inside of Aso Rock, but the truth is, he was not as bad as he was presented to Nigerians. I remember when one of his fierce critics returned from visiting him in Aso Rock, he opened his mouth, saying that he was wrong for unduly criticizing him. Today, under the administration of baba, he is still as water!
You cannot know the true state of things in Nigeria, on the condition that you do not have an access to hush-hush, off the record and confidential information in the corridors of power. Many hated Goodluck out of ignorance. And he was badly damaged and maligned by the major political opposition party (APC), so that their military turned politician could be embraced by Nigerians. Five years after, we are not even where we used to be as a people. Today, we have moved from bad to worse. We are now more neck-dipped in debt today than we were five years ago. Nigerians are groaning louder—under the bondage of suffering on baba’s watch than the lackluster and jaded administration of Goodluck.
Please understand that I am vehemently against those who speak carelessly, wanting to set Nigeria ablaze, but the truth is, objective criticisms is part of democracy. On the condition that Buhari wants to succeed and leave behind a good name when he finishes a few years from now, I advice that he listens more to those who criticize him than those who praise him because of their stomachs and pockets.
Last of all, I do have in my archives, everything the APC said about Goodluck Ebele Azikiwe Jonathan before getting to power. There was no time they built the confidence of Nigerians in the administration of Ebele. Today, they do not want to eat what they are good at serving others! Remember, political power is transient and those who are in power today will be out of it tomorrow. What you do to others today, you are going to reap tomorrow.