LIZ Cheney, an American Republican legislator, has deliberately lost her re-election bid last week. I say “deliberately” because she and everyone else knew that she didn’t stand a snowball’s chance in hell of retaining her seat in Congress if she challenged former President Donald Trump (the de facto Republican Party leader) in a part of the United States – Wyoming State – that is fanatically pro-Trump.
Cheney was overwhelmingly defeated in the House Of Representatives primary on 16th August because, as writer Frank Bruni eloquently put it in the New York Times newspaper:
“She chose the tough world of truth over Donald Trump’s underworld of lies [and] was spurned by conservatives in Wyoming because she had the cleareyed vision to see Trump for what he is and — unlike [other fellow senior Republicans]…she wouldn’t don a blindfold.
“But there could be no dispute, at least not among honest and sensible patriots, about the correctness of her positions on Trump, on her party’s fealty to him and on the peril that he poses to the future of American democracy.”
Bruni is referring not just to the multiple mendacities for which Trump is famed but also to the January 6th 2021 Capitol riot that occurred in Washington when crazed Trumpists, emboldened by encouragement from the then President, stormed Congress in a bid to prevent Joe Biden’s election victory from being certified.
Cheney has firmly condemned the violence and is Vice-Chair of the committee that was set up to investigate this crude assault on democracy. Shockingly, most Republicans regard her as a traitor and have refused to openly and unequivocally condemn the riot…
…either because they are cowards who fear that criticising Trumpist hoodlums will damage their careers or because (for bizarre reasons best known to themselves) they feel that the riot was justified.
I realise that some Vanguard readers are not interested in American politics and may therefore not understand what I am going on about or give a damn about happenings on the other side of the world.
I am also aware that some Vanguard readers DO follow American politics and are big fans of Trump and may therefore regard no-nonsense Trump critics like Liz Cheney and myself as devils.
But you know what?
Even if you are pro-Trump or indifferent, I hope you share my admiration for people who are courageously willing to sacrifice their personal interests and lose substantial benefits to make points based on their principles.
I heartily applaud a strong woman who stood up to be counted, even though she knew that standing up to be counted within this context would cost her a treasured place at the high table of Congress.
I am more liberal than Cheney, a lifelong conservative, and don’t normally agree with her. But I am with her 100% on this occasion.
And even if her opinions about Trump and his acolytes did not match mine, I would still say that anyone who is willing to elevate principles above a “juicy” government job deserves respect.
We could do with some Cheney-type public servants in Nigeria.
Itoje Godfrey wrote to me from Benin City.
A few years ago, I visited my brother and his roommate who were studying at the University of Benin at the time. We had lunch together at one of the fast-food joints around the school premises.
We discussed several issues including the then poor state of the country and the economic meltdown affecting everyone (this was like three years ago). I vividly remember telling them that Nigeria needs a “Moses” to lead us at of this deplorable and decaying state.
I argued that the “Moses” must be on top to effectively effect the change. He would also BE the change because of the way he would carry himself and conduct his affairs. He would be believable and bring hope, real hope. The person would almost be a Saint.
Fast forward to 2022 and Nigeria is presented with this person I was describing that fateful Saturday afternoon, a leader for all us.
Peter Obi the former Governor of Anambra is man who was made for the country’s top job. A leader servant.
It is almost as if the man had prepared himself for the job, with his almost immaculate record as a Governor of Anambra and how he has carried himself since leaving office.
This is a man who left billions of Naira when leaving office. It is unheard of in this country. He drastically reduced the cost of Governance in the State and God knows that Nigeria as a country needs a reduction in the cost of governance generally.
Obi also improved the education sector in the state to enviable heights and built roads, especially in rural areas, linking rural to urban. And his achievements as Governor are all verifiable.
I commend everyone who has taken the bull by the horns and has vowed to rescue Nigeria from her current state of redundancy and wastefulness.
I urge those still interested to do the needful. We must begin the process of rescuing our dear Country now. We must not stop at social media posts or small beer parlour talk.
It was the third president of America, Thomas Jefferson, who said: “The Government you elect is the Government you deserve.”
We must sacrifice to get our permanent voters cards and vote for ourselves the Government we deserve.
I urge Nigerians, no matter where they come from, to vote the Moses of our time, to vote for Peter Obi for all of us.
If we don’t, posterity will judge us.
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