THERE is no doubt any longer about the fact of Goodluck Jonathan running for the Presidency come 2015. His interest has moved beyond “reading of body language” and reading of “his lips” to “transformational” actions. He should and would run, for two obvious reasons.
One, he has a constitutional right to two tenures and this is guaranteed by the Nigerian constitution. For that reason, any other agreement, ordinance or even constitution written and signed by Jonathan or his proxy, negating his capability and capacity of running in 2015, becomes null and void to the extent of the supremacy of the Nigerian constitution [as amended inclusive].
Two, the first geo-political zone to have the feel of the presidency in this very Republic [commenced in 1999] completed two tenures. The South/South geo-political zone, having successfully completed the two terms of four-year-each [making total of eight years], have set a precedent of standard. Again, this antecedent is derivable from the Nigerian constitution.
It is against this second reason that former President Olusegun Obasanjo’s effort to short-change the South/South geo-political Zone by moving the presidency to somewhere in the North would be a catastrophic failure – something that will be similar to the thunderous crashing of “tenure elongation” of his time.
The two reasons given above, though looking as comfortable factors, for the Bayelsa State politician, to continue his sojourn in Aso Rock Villa beyond 2015, may not really be “comfortable” enough for his wish to come to reality. He may have to add some other “unholy advantages” at his disposal, to what the constitution has given to him if he really would want to remain there. I identify a few of them below but with emphasis that they are “unholy advantages”. They are “available advantages” nevertheless because those who occupied the seat before him used some of these very effectively and l cannot tell if “Oga” Jonathan has not be deploying them.
He has the advantage of knowing, contacting and connecting to different volatile groups across the country. These may be Militants from the Niger Delta regions to Boko Haram from the North, MASSOP for the “re-deliverance of Biafra” to the notorious “JUJU” sect that slaughtered over one hundred police officers and men “without using arms and ammunition” in Nasarawa State recently.
Maybe very soon, the world of insurgence will extend and include those in the illegal bunkering business [and this would be more notorious because presently, members include high military officers – both serving and retired and some highly placed traditional rulers all across the country] who might want to come together to negotiate for amnesty.
Armed robbers” may want to come together very soon in Nigeria and negotiate for amnesty. Ditto the “Nigerian society of witches and wizard” [as it is in the United Kingdom] who may want to join the anticipated beneficiaries of amnesty. Kidnappers may soon write, informing the Nigerian Authority of its existence and its willingness to negotiate for truce and come under some amnesty arrangement. There could be more groups coming up in the days ahead because this is Nigeria where “everything is possible”.
For now, the groups in existence are really enjoying financial patronage of the Federal government in all ways. It stands to conclude therefore that whatever other group that will come into existence will always secure the approval of the federal government under the able leadership of President Goodluck Jonathan. He who pays the piper dictates the tune, goes the adage. It means that Mr President can use such groups as “added advantage of walking very comfortably” into 2015. But will such path take him into 2015 easily?
I am of the opinion that he is mostly likely to hit the rock if he chooses to follow that route but instead he should, if he will ever listen to godly advice, follow a path made possible by what the Bible calls “the work of their hands”. The holy book says, concerning the promises of God to man, that “l shall bless the works of your hand”. If the truth must be told, it is what Goodluck Jonathan does or fail to do that will keep him in the Villa for two tenures but not anything else.
My suggestion to Mr.President f is to pick on one major Nigerian project for efficient finishing. The present day Nigeria is a country in total darkness, almost the same as it was in the beginning of creation according to the biblical Genesis report. “There was total darkness over the surface of the earth” and God said, “let there be light and there was light”. Can Mr. President work and do a “little more” to give us light?
For the past fourteen years or so we have been fluctuating between 0ne thousand to four thousand megawatts in generation and distribution of electricity for a country of more than one hundred and fifty million people. For this reason, all industries are dead, and those that survived do so purely on importation of finished products from other countries . Artisans have no jobs , leaving them with no option but to take to robbery and other vices.
I must admit that previous leaders, from Yakubu Gowon till date, have failed woefully on this challenge. Nigerians will identify an achiever, who can do “a little more” [which is really the difference between Great men of history and failures], in replacing darkness with light. Nigerians will do everything possible to reward this achievement.
If Jonathan moves us from the present available four thousand megawatt of electricity to twenty thousand megawatt of electricity’s generation and distribution, by the end of 2014, he would be rewarded by an appreciating citizenry with “a crown of an achiever that deserves continuity”.
This is the Master Key Goodluck Jonathan needs to renew his tenancy of Aso Rock Villa for another four years from 2015. But without this Master Key, there is no any advantage; be it constitutional or “unholy advantages”, enumerated at the beginning of this essay will retain him as President of Nigeria beyond 2015.
And of course, he could continue his presidency, if he fails in this electricity matter, but only as the “President of Ijaw National Council”, presiding from Otueke Community in Bayelsa State of Nigeria.
So it is what he does or fails to do. The choice is his!
Mr. GODWIN ETAKIBUEBU, a public affairs analyst, wrote from Lagos.