LAST week, ex-President Olusegun Obasanjo wrote an open letter criticizing President Muhammadu Buhari on various levels and urging him to forget about seeking re-election next year.
Obasanjo went on to say that neither Buhari’s All Progressives Congress, APC, Party nor the opposition Peoples’ Democratic Party, PDP, were capable of providing Nigeria with the leadership it desperately needs.
And this week, Obasanjo’s new baby, the Coalition of Nigeria, CN, movement, was born in Abuja.
The launch of this “Third Force” was attended by several famous APC, PDP and currently non-aligned VIPs, some of whom I know personally and happen to like.
I also regard Obasanjo as the best head of state we’ve had so far. But I think it is fair to say that not every name on the CN guest list was ethically inspiring!
And the question I feel obliged to ask is this: No matter how pleasant, smart and sincere some of the CN’s advocates may be, what is the point of forming a new political “movement” that is so full of familiar faces and Usual Suspects?
The former Governor of Osun State, retired Colonel Olagunsoye Oyinlola (retd), who seems very nice and is, we are told, likely to become the national coordinator of the CN, says that he has not renounced his membership of the APC (he’s Chairman of the National Identity Management Commission at the moment).
“I am in a movement. They are two different things, between a party and a movement, it is just like belonging to a society. I am not tied down to a political party…The style of convening this movement is noble and it is quite different from any other we have had in this country.”
Hmmm! If you say so, Sir!
The mission of the CN reads: “The Coalition for Nigeria Movement is a movement that seeks to promote and ensure socio-economic development, improvement, growth, social justice, egalitarianism, cohesion, cooperation, equity, equality of opportunity, transparency, societal order, rule of law, human security and human rights leading to National Unity, good governance and general well-being and the welfare of all citizens and inhabitants of Nigeria.”
A reader’s comment
FROM: Mazi Chinedu Nzeribe, an Onitsha-based former bank manager (firstname.lastname@example.org” <email@example.com). A summary of an email in which he blames me for believing that Buhari could deliver change.
…I knew that everything about Buhari and his promises through that noise making, lying party called APC were just hypes…and I never voted for Buhari because of his antecedents especially when he was Petroleum Commissioner in 1975 or thereabout to when he ruthlessly removed the democratically elected government of Alhaji Shehu Shagari, to his nepotic stint as Head of PTF under Abacha- an Abacha who was adjudged to be eternally corrupt! Eternally corrupt because till date we still hear about Abacha’s loot being repatriated.
For someone with an unblemished integrity to have agreed to work under an Abacha whose likeness for stolen funds was legendary made me to suspect that integrity. His integrity, as far as I am concerned was and is still selective.
I knew he won’t do well. As military head of state, he was in power while the late Idiagbon was in control of that power. Today, he is in power while some evil forces, evil men who became evil right from their mothers’ wombs are in control of the power. Juxtapose all the promises of Buhari and his fellow clueless gangs in APC in 2015 and the realisation of those promises today and you will feel like trekking without food from Nigeria to Tripoli, Libya in shame and anger.
The worst time to be a Nigerian is today. A Minister in this Government in 2015 boastfully told us that a serious goverment could fix power problems in Nigeria under six months. More than three years after that aimless boastful remark,Nigerians are still the highest users of fake torchlights and generating sets from China just because the power fixing Minister has been unable to break the jinx in the power sector. I can go on and on.
I agree with you on some of the issues you had with the Jonathan Presidency but the hype heaped on Buhari as the Messiah really pissed me off because I knew APC and Buhari prepared for war in 2015…but never prepared for governance and that is why we are where we are today. The first signs of their unpreparedness was when it took them six months to appoint people like saints Amaechi, Fashola, Ngige as Ministers. Six whole months. Imagine!
That was when recession planted its seeds deeper and deeper because Nigeria was running without a cabinet. The one thing this government has been able to achieve 100 per cent is running a blame game that has no rival.
I am pissed off with this government, pissed off with those who still support this government and most especially pissed off with that confusionist called Nasir El Rufai who, instead of commiserating with the people of Benue State whose relatives were mindlessly butchered by his kinsmen?, came on air to rant that ‘we have asked Buhari to re-contest in 2019 and we feel no apologies about it’.
Insanity to the highest level.
I am no longer pissed off with you, Donu, because you have started to talk sense and started using your eyes to see [in response to me admitting on this page, a couple of weeks ago, to being disappointed in the Buhari administration]. I wish Naija the best.
Mazi Chinedu Nzeribe @ Onitsha, Anambra State.
Sounds great. But haven’t we heard it all before?!
ANYWAY, many of my friends are extremely excited about this CN thing. They are sure that it is going to be a fantastic vehicle for profound and widespread change. They are convinced that it will revolutionize our governance space.
I beg to differ and will be very surprised if CN even gets off the ground properly…in time to present a robust alternative to disillusioned voters in 2019…Or ever. But I will gladly eat humble pie publicly if I turn out to be wrong.
I also want big change BADLY and would once have been champing at the bit to join a movement like CN. But I’ve become super-cynical in old age and think that we are not going to get big change so easily. Let’s wait and see what happens.
Responses to: firstname.lastname@example.org or to 0802 747 6458 OR 0811 675 9752 (texts only). PLEASE KINDLY NOTE THAT UNLESS YOU REQUEST ANONYMITY, YOUR COMMENTS MAY BE PUBLISHED, WITH YOUR NAMES AND CONTACT DETAILS ATTACHED.