Giving Mu’azu A Bad Name, By Utum Eteng
The speculated determination by the South South and South East governors to unseat the incumbent PDP national chairman, Alhaji Adamu Mu’azu for an election they jointly and collectively failed due to the overzealousness of the governors is like giving a dog a bad name to hang it. Mu’azu is said to be targeted by some party faithful together with the governors from the two zones playing key roles to unseat him due to the party’s disastrous performance at the recent general election.
Part of their complaint against Mu’azu is that he led a party whose presidential candidate was flatly defeated at the polls. The governors who acted as emperors have so soon forgotten that by their ambition and showmanship to impose candidates in their respective states largely led to the resentment expressed by the people, who voted overwhelmingly against the PDP. The same state governors who have turned again to now purport to be owners of the party have again forgotten their collaboration with some unscrupulous members of the PDP at the national working committee level to rubbish aspirants after extorting billions of naira to give support to the candidates the governors imposed on the people. The state governors ignored the timely admonitions of Rev. Mbaka and leader Olumba Olumba Obu who foresaw the defeat of the PDP well in advance before the general election and took steps to won the PDP. They took no positive steps to guide against these admonitions because they thought that Nigerians are still naive. The question Mu’azu should ask some of these selfish governors is whether they have not read Thisday Newspaper of 25th December, 2014 or the Vanguard Newspaper of March 7, 2015, page 5 where the foremost Ijaw leader, Chief E. K. Clark said “the imposition of candidates at all levels by the state governors would haunt the party at the polls”. This statement of fact was made when a faction of Gombe State PDP visited Chief E. K. Clark.
The party members recruited into the Mu’azu-must-go campaign, should first ask the leftover PDP governors and also the over ambitious outgoing governors to remove the speck in their eyes before proceeding to remove that of Mu’azu, if any. Without mincing words, Jonathan’s undoing was majorly leaving the PDP structures into the governors’ hands which they abused without reservations. Some members of the PDP NWC keyed in, to make money for themselves from potential aspirants. When it suited the governors they brought in Tukur, removed him when the same PDP governors saw Tukur not advancing their selfish interest, they went for Mu’azu’s. Today, the same state governors want him out, because he expressed at the earliest opportunity resentment against the imposition of candidates on the people.
Mu’azu may be removed today by the governors who may be supported by some power obsessed NWC leaders, but the fall of PDP and the rise of APC is divine. As the defeat with a margin of about 2.5 million votes though painful is an open act of God intended to weep away sorrows, sadness and tears in the eyes of the traumatized Nigerians who have for 10 years been under the PDP impunity.
Generally, PDP leaders took Nigerians for granted, they saw Nigeria as a conquered political territory. The plan to replace Mu’azu with one of the alleged South South outgoing PDP governors will not affect the new focus and alignment of the people of the South South to join their Northern brothers to form an inclusive government. It is on record that right from immemorial times, the South South people have aligned, accommodated and worked together with the Northern power block. The alignments of Gov. Rotimi Amaechi of Rivers State and Gov. Sylva, former Gov. of Bayelsa State therefore are in furtherance of this ancient marriage with the North. God has helped the South South to have their turn when Jonathan was elected in 2011 and the North gave him support in furtherance of this old marriage.
The plot to change Mu’azu with one of the outgoing governors is not only selfish, but is also the desire of the speculated South South governors, alleged to be menacingly corrupt to seek a soft landing for his suspected acts of deeping hands into public funds and awaiting possible prosecution by the EFCC. Even where the PDP has resolved to cleanse its house by removing Mu’azu before 29, the protagonists of this agenda must properly screen its possible replacement to avoid a situation whereby a possibly corrupt governor is not foist on the people to further enhance the PDP corruption impunity Syndrome already leveled against the PDP by the public. The PDP must know that the speculated South South outgoing governor is an over ambitious political opportunist, known a few weeks back to have concluded arrangements to decamp with his imposed elected PDP members to the APC but suddenly changed his mind when the Supreme Court gave the judgment which reaffirmed the Court of Appeal judgment against elected members cross carpeting when there are no crisis at the national level of their party.
It is also possible that some PDP governors desirous of crossing over to the APC are trying to use the removal of Mu’azu to forment trouble at the national level to find excuse and justification to execute the secretly plan hatched long time to defect to the APC. This sabotage should not be ruled out, as some PDP governors from the South South before now have one of their legs in PDP and the other in APC, though the APC in their state has funny impression about them.
That Buhari has emerged the president of Nigeria is enough invitation for the South South to join the APC to be relevant in the scheme of things at the centre. The South South region cannot afford to be in the opposition at the national level at this crucial time. The support that was given to Jonathan by the North should be reciprocated by supporting Buhari’s government without anyone sitting on the fence. The South South governors projecting the view agenda for one of them to become PDP national chairman should burry their wicked, selfish and destabilizing plan. After all, if one puts together all the votes scored by Jonathan in the last presidential election in the South South and the one of the zone from the North, those of the zone are far more than the ones scored by him in the whole South South put together.
The South South people must learn to navigate their political journey through alignment with the North if to protect the Jonathan legacies, if any, at the centre. Allowing the selfish governors to change Mu’azu again with one of them no matter where he comes from will be counterproductive. They have at many instances influenced the change of PDP National Chairmen, and have never been satisfied especially when outspoken ones like Mu’azu openly told him not to impose candidates on the people. The PDP leadership must come to terms with the fact that nothing last forever and that life itself is about live and let live. That APC has chased PDP out of the centre, they should admit they are out for now, what is good for the goose is also good for the gander.
Chief Barr Utum Eteng
Private Legal Practitioner & Public Affairs Analyst