Ray Morphy is the president, South East-South South Professional Group and publisher of the now rested Summit Newspapers. He has also been a ringside spectator in many of the political developments from 1999 till date. In this interview, he shares his thoughts on the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) crisis and controversies over whether or not President Goodluck Jonathan should seek re-election in 2015. Excerpts:
By Gabriel Ewepu
IT is believed by many Nigerians that the crisis in PDP was caused by those who don’t want President Goodluck Jonathan to seek re-election in 2015, do you think the president should forfeit his right to contest the 2015 election?
Those who are asking another person to renounce his constitutional right to run for office are suffering from chronic delusions of superiority. As far as democracy is concerned, it is only the constitution that can stop any Nigerian from seeking elective office. In a constitutional democracy, it is the majority opinion via election that can determine who rules not a cabal, club, cult or whatever. I do not know what those who do want Jonathan to contest are calling themselves but I want to assure you that as a Nigerian, I respect the constitution and not the wishes of a minority gang-up. In my view unless the courts say so, Dr Jonathan should consider himself free to run for any office of his choice including the presidency. It is those who are making those calls that should be told to desist in the interest of peace and stability. Do they think that the South-South is not equal to the South-West that had eight years or we are not equal to the North-West that had uncountable years?
Don’t you think that the PDP crisis may affect Jonathan if he runs?
That is left to the electorate to determine, but let me say this; Jonathan will take that election because the odds favour him. For more than 40 years, the country was mismanaged and suddenly some people think that Jonathan or anyone can fix it in the short span of four years, that’s not possible. Jonathan is human and not superhuman and in my view, he has done fairly well given the challenges and distractions thrown at him and the majority of Nigerians know so. Boko Haram has stolen much of our resources and corruption too. But just like Boko Haram, corruption is tamable and once both are caged, we will begin to see the light in the horizon and changes in our body politic.
Governor Obong Akpabio of Akwa Ibom state is reputed to have become an Abuja politician. It is said that he hardly stays in Uyo, what’s your take on that?
Obong Godswill is my friend and he is one friend I am proud of. Akwa Ibom was carved out of Cross River and most of us were friends before the creation of Akwa Ibom. We still maintain our friendships. As such, I travel to that state often and I can tell you that what that man has done there is nothing short of a miracle. He has taken Akwa Ibom to new heights and has set a standard that no governor in this dispensation can match. He has funds to do so, I agree but the man is doing a fantastic job.
The APC said it is set to take over the presidency in 2015, do you think the party has what it takes to give the country the leadership it lacks?
When I hear of APC, and their delusion of taking over in 2015, I laugh. First, APC is as undemocratic as they come. It is a party held on the neck by one man and one man only. This same man has used that platform to put virtually every member of his family into public office and has massively privatized public assets in APC states. The APC is not a party, it’s a gang-up and such gangs don’t last. I have a long history in politics and I can tell you that I was a signatory of DPP application to INEC as the founding Director of Administration and Planning of that party. I was invited by my good friend Bafarawa to help him put that party together as a technocrat. DPP was intended as a step-son of PDP and today it is part of APC.