Between Obasanjo And The Two Armed Robbers


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Between Obasanjo And The Two ĎArmed Robbersí



Waheed Odusile

culled from THE SUN. Monday, December 20, 2004


For the past three years or so, Anambra state has known no peace and from all indications, the situation could remain the same for the foreseeable future unless something urgent is done to restore the area to normalcy.

Since the protracted face off between former governor Chinwoke Mbadinuju and Chief Emeka Offor in the last dispensation to the present ugly situation between Governor Chris Ngige and his estranged godfather Chief Chris Uba, nothing has been normal in that state and the madness that is going on is beginning to affect the rest of us. Not that the two Anambra warlords have carried their fight to other states, but they have succeeded in taking it to the centre of governance in Abuja and the fabrics of our existence as a democracy is being torn apart, and those that know are covering up the truth of the matter, directly or otherwise aiding and abetting what is going on.

Whether we like it or not, the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) is the face of our democracy today. Apart from controlling the rein of government in Aso Rock, the National Assembly is in its pocket and about two thirds of the states, including the state assemblies are run by the party. The picture is not different with local government administrations across the country. So whatever happens to the PDP today would have a telling effect on our democracy.
So it is in this vein that all lovers of democracy in Nigeria must be concerned about the on going civil war in the PDP. This war has the tendency to snowball into a larger conflict that could ultimately destroy the polity. At the root of this in-fighting is greed for power, which has led the leadership into committing so many atrocities including lies and falsehood, all in a bid to remain in power. There is absolutely lack of truthfulness in the leadership of the party and this has spilled over into the seat of government.

Both the leaders of the PDP and President Olusegun Obasanjo know the cause of the Anambra crisis, yet they have refused to say the truth. Instead they have been busy deceiving the rest of us into believing that they are doing something about it. The truth is that the PDP stole the governorship of Anambra state from the people and nothing good should be expected from a stolen mandate.


As the Yoruba would say, even if a lie had been traveling for the past twenty years, it would only take the truth one day to catch up with it. Now the truth has caught up with the PDP lies over the governorship of Anambra state. Now we know the PDP did not win in Anambra state and this came from the mouth of the President himself. Now we know how the so called PDP victory in south west was achieved. We now know, courtesy of the government of Plateau state, that most state had their purse ripped open on the orders of the party leadership to finance the purported PDP conquest of Yorubaland. The truth is coming out and I say we have not seen anything yet. By the time the whole truth is told, I am sure we would know the killers of Chief Bola Ige, Marshal Harry, Aminasoari Dikibo and other high profile politicians felled by assassin bullets in the past few years.

Everybody, I believe, has a conscience and at the appropriate time that conscience would come to the fore and force the owner to say the truth. I believe President Obasanjo and PDP national Chairman Audu Ogbeh are being driven by their conscience to come out with the truth about some of the problems they and their party have caused this nation, especially in Anambra. If Ogbeh had not been forced by his conscience to write Obasanjo about the drift in governance of the country, the president I am sure would not have been annoyed to write that powerful reply of his that was full of venom. To the few paragraphs written by Ogbeh, Obasanjo replied with several pages. And in an attempt, albeit futile, to give a lie to Ogbehís eye opening letter, the President let it slip from his pen what they have been hiding for long from the rest of us, that is Dr. Chris Ngige never won the governorship of Anambra state. See what annoyance and quick temper can do. This is the good in evil. If Ogbeh had not provoked Obasanjo, the president wouldnít have told us what we all know or rather suspect about the elections in Anambra state. Thank you Ogbeh, but you are equally as guilty as our president and governor Ngige. All of you know the truth but you kept it from us, thinking that over time, the lies you have consistently told us about Anambra, we would come to accept as the truth. Things donít necessarily work out like that. You canít build something on nothing. Again as the Yoruba would say, the house built with spittle would be destroyed by the dew.

According to President Obasanjo, Ngige admitted in his presence, to Uba, his godfather, that he did not win the governorship election in Anambra. And what did the president do? He sent them away. Pray, what kind of a leader is this?
Mr. President likened what is happening in Anambra state to the actions of two armed robbers, who are trying to out do one another in the sharing of the booty. So if these guys are indeed Ďarmed robbersí, what has the President done to them? What do we do to armed robbers? What do we do to someone who took what does not belong to him? What do we do to someone who has stolen? What do we do to a politician who has stolen another politician mandate?
As I was writing this piece last Friday, my attention was attracted by a live broadcast on the NTA network service from Aso Rock, showing a pre Christmas interdenominational service. I was quite fascinated by the religiosity of the atmosphere and at a point I was tempted to see the President the way he had always presented himself; a man divinely chosen to lead Nigeria. The way he conducted the menís choir with gusto and in absolute control, and at the same time with a humble disposition, I couldnít but think, if only this man would apply himself fully to his job, stay on top of it and at the same time be less arrogant and stop playing God or as Chief Olu Falae said, stop seeing himself as Mr. Nigeria, may be some of our problems wouldnít have arisen. I asked myself, how can someone profess so much Godliness and yet allow ungodly acts like election rigging and some less than honourable people around him.

The Presidentís aides have said so much about him being a man of high integrity. They said he meant well for Nigeria and he is the best thing to have ever happened to this country. Good talk but I ask them, why are they the only people seeing these fine qualities of our president? Why have the rest of us not seen these things? It is either they are lying or the president has not openly demonstrated his good intentions for us to see or has not convinced us he meant well. Or may be the rest of us are blind.

Obasanjo has a very good opportunity now with the Anambra issue to show to us that he is above party politics, and as the father of the nation, he will do what is best for the country, irrespective of whose interest is at stake. He should do the right thing now by causing the two Ďarmed robbersí he has identified in Anambra state to be made to face the law. He should cause all relevant documents relating to the stolen governorship in Anambra to be made available to the relevant judicial authorities to assist them restore the stolen mandate to the rightful winner. He should demonstrate his Godliness in governance too, not only from the pulpit, so that when he talks and acts, Nigerians would believe him and follow him. After all, no matter what anybody would like to say about President George Bush of the United States of America, most Americans believe in his moral leadership and see him as a leader who is guided by his Christian faith in all his action. We too would like to say this of our president. The ball is in your court Mr. President. We know you can do it. Stop listening to those jesters around you.


I canít but continue to talk about the December 7 general elections in Ghana. I think it was a good signpost for democracy in Africa. Obasanjo should call for a briefing on how the whole thing went from INEC chairman, Abel Guobadia, he was there with some of his commissioners. We should not be Giant of Africa by mouth alone, letís show good examples for the rest of the continent to follow. In the area of free and fair election, Ghana has taken the lead. Nigeria should not be ashamed or feel too big to learn from the Ghanaians. And by the way, Ghana is relatively peaceful in comparison with Nigeria. The social infrastructures are equally better. How they achieved these I donít know but the President can find out from his brother in Accra, President John Kufuor.


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