Wednesday, July 11, 2018

NGIGE, EKITI, APC & BUHARI

As if the troubles bedeviling the All Progressives Congress, APC wasn't enough, yesterday a chieftain from the party from Anambra State, where he's been roundly defeated severally by the ruling party in that state, a Dr. Chris Ngige, whose political fortunes have long since nosedived, in his speech at the grand campaign rally for the Ekiti States' APC gubernatorial candidate and former governor, Dr. Kayode Fayemi, mistakenly asked Ekiti residents present at the venue, as well as Nigerians watching proceedings live on TV to vote for outgoing Governor Ayodele Fayose, who he stated had been a good wife to Ekiti people, cooking good food, amongst other attributes of, and to women that feminists may find offensive. By the time he realised his mistake, the damage had been resoundingly done, and tweets by APC followers to reduce it, only further stoked and spread the fire.


If Fayose's deputy, and People's Democratic Party, PDP candidate for next Saturday's poll wins the governorship seat, it may signal the beginning (or an intensification, if things go the other way) of the grand plot and design to have President Muhammadu Buhari lose his bid for a second term. The recent formation of the Reformed-APC, a splinter group from the APC, in what is reminiscent of what happened with the PDP, when the N-PDP was formed, and eventually contributed to a large extent to the failure of the party in the presidential elections of 2015, along with it's collaboration afterwards with other parties, with the sole aim of denying President Buhari his second term ambition signals a possible tectonic shift that will appear to cast him as the tribal leader he's always been, with the ability to win elections only in his neck of the woods, and never good for the diversity that Nigeria represents, a notion he's done absolutely nothing to dispel, first from his appointment of service chiefs mainly from his region, to pursuing policies that only suit the north only, like when he encouraged the World Bank Chief to focus on the Northeast, to reenergizing efforts at crude oil discovery in the north, to attempting to strip control of water resources from states to the federal government, when much of Nigeria's water resources lies in the south, to attempts to make the federal government responsible for the creation of ranches, across Nigeria for herdsmen, which should ordinarily be a private endeavour.


Even though Nigerians looked over his tendency to and for favouritisms, not in the least including in his so called anti-corruption fight, that seem to be targeting only those opposed to his rule and policies, they couldn't get over his quiet and silence, even the deflecting of blame from Fulani herdsmen, which he continues to champion over the killings that have become commonplace especially in Nigeria's middle-belt region, and other states like Taraba and Adamawa, where herders from his Fulani tribe have been severally implicated. The closest he'd come to accepting the responsibility of the group (tagged the fourth deadliest terrorist group in the world) in the carnage, coming only when he refers to the asymmetric warfare meted out on indigenes (including women and children while they slept) of the affected places, was to deem the attacks a farmers-herders clash, when evidence hardly supports such.


Unfortunately, because of his below par response, and scant if any, attempt at ensuring justice for victims and survivors by bringing perpetrators of the killings to book despite repeated assurances to do same, the recent reprisal attacks by mostly militia groups of affected tribes and peoples (of Benue, Plateau, Taraba, Adamawa in recent times), who have resorted to self help, is the offshoot. Security agents like members of the police and army, deployed most times only as a reactionary force, that may have even stood by when the initial incidence of mayhem and massacres that took place, because they hadn't received orders "from above", have led many of the indigenes, including a retired army General to allege that the military and security forces besides taking sides, have even gone ahead to collude with marauding Fulani herdsmen. When the President recently claimed that it was unfair to say he hadn't wielded the big stick against the herdsmen because he was also Fulani, he failed to mention  things he'd done that should make Nigerians observe otherwise.


Sadly, many of the states, save for Taraba, suffering from the high insecurity situation in Nigeria, are those from which President Buhari gained huge electoral figures that helped propelled him to power. That includes Zamfara, where armed men, this time not suspected to be Fulani, have so menaced the state that the governor recently conceded his largely ceremonial title of Chief Security Officer of the state he superintends over as governor, seeing as he couldn't control how troops are to be deployed, nor have the power to chastise erring officers. On more than one occasion, the President, and members of his party have done what they accused the party they replaced in coming to power of doing, which is dancing on the graves of Nigerians, by organising and holding party rallies during and after deadly attacks on Nigerians, only for the government to release much rehashed statements (the only difference been in dates and places), expressing shock and outrage at the killings, sympathising with the government and people of the affected state, and vowing to bring perpetrators to book, before the Vice President, 'Yemi Osinbajo, now sadly declared "Minister of Condolence and Tragedy" by the unimpressed mass of Nigerian Twitterati, is then sent to the State, to assess the situation.


As if things weren't bad enough, Femi Adeshina, government's spokesman (who  has taken sycophancy to new heights) went on to add salt to injury of Nigerians by insensitively stating that deaths under the immediate past government, was more than it is under the current regime, like the loss of Nigerian lives have become a competition of, and for under whom were more lives lost, as if a life should be lost at all. The irony wasn't at all lost on discerning Nigerians, when Buhari just hours ago, rejoiced with, and thanked Thai authorities for successfully rescuing some teenage footballers and their coach from a maze of caves, after they got trapped there days ago. The shouts of a few, who had aforehand read the handwriting on the wall, concerning the president's lack of capacity to steer the ship of state have now, before and after the 2015 elections, continued to be boosted by the addition of voices connected to eyes from which scales have fallen, leaving the government no choice, seemingly than to explore coercive means to turn things in its favour politically, starting with Ekiti State in but a few days time.



'kovich

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