By: Ini Akpan Morgan
An Opera News update featured Alhaji Buba Galadima, who led the Reformed APC members out of the mainstream APC in July 2018, as saying that there was indeed a power rotation agreement by 4 leading lights of Nigeria’s ruling party. According to him the 4 delegates who endorsed the power rotation agreement of the ruling party were drawn equally from the South West and the North, and they include 2 former State Governors from the South West, 1 serving Governor in one of the Northern States, and a frontline politician from the North, who are those who endorsed the agreement. Has this agreement been denied?
I have never been a proponent of power rotation, nor a supporter of clanish politics. This attitude evolved with me from the circumstances of my birth and my upbringing. My early-years affiliations had exposed me to various cultures, religions and traditions, and this has driven my preference in introducing myself as a Nigerian. I am first a Nigerian before I am an Ibibio man because the outside world knows and would relate more to me as a Nigerian than afford me same as an Ibibio man. The outlook of Nigeria to the entire world provides me the necessary protection in, and allowances within the global community. Nigeria provides me my national identity universally respected, not my tribe.
However, if the frontline leaders of the APC had ever had an agreement on the matters of power rotation, it presently would tasks their self-respect and collective integrity more than the success of whatsoever aspirations nursed, to honour such agreement(s) to the exact letters of it. It is criminal to seek to remove the goal-line through which the party’s rare victory as the major opposition party was scored. And I cannot see the success of the party in 2023 if the movers of that agreement in the party show they are untrustworthy. This untrustworthiness of will surely be amplified during the presidential campaigns by those aggrieved and it would be costly. How-be-it too, that the 2020 #EndSARS protest has raised a successful awareness about the challenges the Buhari administration has with the 2015/19 campaign promises.
No one should make it hard for the APC to sustain and retain the goodwill Nigerians showered upon the party to cause her to win the 2015 and 2019 presidential elections. We must all agree that it would have been near impossible for President Muhammadu Buhari to become the President of Nigeria without the numerous, and selfless contributions of the leaders of the party. Integrity does not win elections, neither can a section of this country win a presidential election standing alone.
If it were possible to achieve: that one region (geopolitical zone) can propel electoral victory in Nigeria, the late Sardauna of Sokoto, the first Premier of the Northern region, the President-General of the Northern Peoples Congress (NPC), and founder of the Jammiyar Mutanen Arewa (JMA), Sir (Dr) Ahmadu Bello Rabbah, KBE, would have no need for the NCNC coalition that formed the Federal Governement under Alhaji (Sir) Abubakar Tafawa Balewa, CBE, Nigeria’s first Premier and Head of Government.
In those days, there were alliances that informed the political coalitions enter into, and a close study of our history would throw up to us outcomes of such mergers. Like questioning why it was impossible for the North to stimulate the alliance structure of the NPC/NCNC coalition to transform it into the NPN/NPP alliance between 1979 and 1983? Why did the political embodiment of NCNC in the defunct Eastern Region (the South South region) break off to join the NPN in the second republic, refusing to align with the NPP? And how did the then seeming impossible alliance between the North and the South West in the first and second republic become possible and successful to taking power in 2015?
A close study of the frameworks of our past political party coalitions should bear enough information for leaders of the APC to draw a success plan for the 2023 presidential election. Everything possible must be done to keep the APC House as one, otherwise, if the leaders of the party discountenance the need to keep the party as one fold under one shepherd, I will never fear to say that I see a divided party ahead of the 2023 Presidential election if personal ambitions are not set aside for the collective one.
The recent unfortunate lost of Edo State to the PDP by our great party was due to the personal ambitions and the vendetta sought by our leaders. It was outlandish and sad. That was an example of the selfish abuse of the powers of execution, and nobody looked like they cared to call that show of shame to order. No leader should use his public office to vacate personal vendetta as this is clearly what is trending in political parties these days. People who rise by opportunism to public office do everything possible to remain on public office as if it is their eternal inheritance. Nigerians must no longer tolerate this.
Again, if the leadership cadre of the APC had entered into an agreement to rotate power to the South in 2023, let power vacate to the South. And if the agreement entered into was for a microzoned rotation of power to the South West, let power vacate to the South West. Nigeria is for all of us. Those who are uncomfortable with what was agreed should learn not to concede to what they would rejecybafterwards, no matter the loss they envisage. We cannot entrust Nigeria’s leadership into the hands of people who do not keep their words. A liar is a thief.
And the Office of the President of Nigeria has never been taken through appeals and begging, or by cancelling-out selfless devotions of other people to upgrade selfish ambitions of power hungry hawks. No one should enter into another’s harvest: people should be allowed to reap where they sowed. The generality of members of the APC must be allowed to have their voices in how the party delivers to herself the victory taken through the people. I am saying all this at the risk of being olitically stigmatised, and it is an excellent price to pay for saying my conviction, helping my conscience and being at peace with my God. Nothing in this world is permanent – not even human lives. What counts is what you take away to your graves