Opinion

PDP, Atiku, Okowa and the angry birds

T here is obvious disquiet in PDP following the outcome of the PDP presidential primary election and the nomination of the vice-presidential candidate of the party. There are a lot of angry birds and their grievances need to be managed with tact.

 

The foes are coming for them and luring them with promises they never intend to keep knowing their aims, what is PDP doing to stop them from swallowing the party? Every seasoned politician understands the game of politics that it’s a game you either win or fail. When you win, you have a moral duty to be magnanimous in victory by reaching out to the losers and seeking their cooperation. Whereby you fall on the other side as a loser, it’s equally your responsibility to lick your wounds, support the winner and move the party forward.

But why are those that lost in the PDP free and fair primary hyperventilating about their loss? Why are they so angry in a contest which they know from the onset will have one clear winner? Being disgruntled and reckless to the extent of wanting to destroy the party you helped build and sustain is not how to be a good party man. Those who towed this path of scattering their own party had always lived to regret their disappointing act.

 

But in Nigeria where party politics is played without any ideological leaning, whimsical gerrymandering by some reckless quants is not shaming enough. The character of a good politician is not about being a disgruntled loser but keeping the party strong and united to achieve its core objective of winning the election and establishing a government.

Political gerrymandering is the reason why people see all the political parties as the same, the same people and reasons while small parties are posing a threat to major parties.

Since after the PDP primary election, I have seen and heard a lot, and also the utterances of Governor Samuel Ortom, who migrated from APC to PDP, about the choice of Atiku’s Vice Presidential candidate. I was personally surprised by Ortom’s hyperventilation because it is the prerogative of the winner to actually choose his vice, and many things come into play.

Essentially, the choice of VP can be likened to a man making the choice of a wife. You look for character compatibility not a boxing partner above every other factor.

 

That Atiku chose Ifeanyi Okowa does not mean he does not respect the person or contributions of Nyesom Wike as a strong pillar of the party. I don’t think anyone has contributed to the party more than Wike has done but it’s God that anoints kings.

Wike lost to God’s factor and not because he is not loved or wanted by the people. I personally admire his courage and industry. He is my man and I respect him.

 

That Atiku was presented with three names by the advisory committee leaves him with a discretion which he exercised. The noticeable crack in PDP as a result is not motivating to party enthusiasts. A house divided against itself does not stand. 2023 is PDPs election to win! If they don’t quickly patch their cracks, they will lose to APC and that will be the end of the party. The current crisis in the party is a challenge to the party’s presidential candidate.

 

His ability to unite the party is a test case of his would be ability to unite the country. I urge those who are aggrieved to well understand that the foe that must be defeated is APC which has ruined the country and not PDP. Our major problem today is lack of unity. The people no longer trust the system. Nigeria’s number one obstacle in this regard is APC. Once the party gets out of the way, we will begin our journey of social, political and economic recovery.

 

The leader of the APC government, President Muhammadu Buhari is himself a problem, not because he is Fulani or Moslem but because he is a bad leader. His leadership character is catastrophic. He is grossly incompetent and has no clue about anything. I don’t think any of our past leaders compares to him when it comes to incompetency and being divisive. He is the one standing in our way of being our brothers and sister’s keeper despite. Despite the differences in our tongues, religions and tribes, we must unite to chase the party away.

I have personally reviewed all the major candidates in this upcoming election and the only one that seems prepared to lead and with the character to unite, secure the country and build it back to prosperity is Atiku Abubakar. His personal life and accomplishments transcend religion and ethnicity. He is one leader whose mother, father, wives, children touch all sections of this country. I have no doubt in my mind that as a leader he will be able to recover our social cohesion and restore back people’s trust and confidence in the country.

So far, he is the major candidate that is not phony about his choice of Vice-Presidential candidate. In choosing Ifeanyi Okowa out of the three potential nominees presented to him by the party, his choice of Ifeanyi was deliberate. He was partly influenced to choose him as a running mate because he is Igbo.

 

Atiku understands that the Igbo need to be in the same room with other Nigerians to build unity. It’s now left for us as a people to rebuild our bridges and recognize the Igbo nation as one.

We must realize that we cannot fly far with one wing. I have also heard people argue about the major political parties and which of them will win the 2023 presidential election. I acknowledge that it is still too early in the day to reach a definite conclusion on how the election will unfold. I also acknowledge that this election will be the first since 1999 where a fringe party will pose a threat to the two major parties. I concede that the NNPP and Labour Party will make an impact in this election but I don’t see them causing major    upsets.

 

This election is PDPs election to win for the reason that APC in the past seven years took Nigerians to hell.

 

Virtually everyone is tired and fed up with the incompetent leadership of the party. I am reluctant to endorse the NNPP and Labour Party because these are parties that had not been tried and tested before. I cannot also reasonably compare them with either PDP or APC and therefore cannot entrust our fragile federation in their hands.

However, I am much more comfortably disposed to compare PDP with APC. I can distinguish which era is better. As an adult, I lived through PDP leadership from 1999 to 2015. I saw the efforts made by the party to build a strong economy and maintain social cohesion.

Like most governments they solved some problems and created some problems too. PDP was not perfect and of course one of the weakest opposition parties. But compared to the APC administration, the PDP years were better and can be described as Nigeria’s golden era. APC is to say the least, evil.

 

They had no agenda other than to ruin, plunder and destroy and had successfully ruined the country. They ruined anything they touched. If PDP is successful in 2023 as I wish them to be, I pray that they will be able to restore us back to 2015 and improve on their records.

 

The presidential candidate of PDP has repeatedly harped on social cohesion, security, productive economy, quality education and devolving more powers to the State. He needs to amplify these issues. He also will need a team that will not just embody his leadership skill, but talents which will reflect our diversity.

 

He will need a team made up with people with common sense economy, men that are frugal and prudent in the management of resources, people with courage to confront the cabals and bandits pinning the country down. He will need men that are forthright and frank.

 

He will need a team that is innovative, not the same recycled old hands. That’s the unity government I expect post Buhari where every good hand irrespective of party, religion, tribe and tongue will be on deck to salvage the country.

 

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