PDP!!! Bring Down The House…By Funke Egbemode
There is juju, plenty of jazz at work, I told myself. This is beyond ordinary eye. Then I cautioned myself: Funke, your imagination is going into overdrive. But nothing improved. In fact, things steadily got worse. Everybody started doing what they should not do and left all that they should do undone. All the actors started reading their scripts from the bottom up because they were holding their scripts upside down. Am I the only one seeing this? I asked under my breath. Then more unimaginable madness; everybody talking, nobody listening. Are these people under a spell? Have the witches and wizards in the other compound put them in a big black pot and started cooking them? I didn’t know I said that aloud until someone beside said in Yoruba: ‘ajatuka ni t’agbaarin, that is what ‘they’ did against them.’ I looked at the man standing beside me. There he was, an old man with white beard and knowing eyes. He should know. What’s more, his thoughts tally with mine. Something is amiss here, something untoward, something beyond what political analysts can decode.
There is a nut the Yoruba call Agbaarin. It has both male and female species. The female is brown while the male is black. They are used in a game that resembles bowling. It is played by two people and for as long as the game lasts, there is a struggle for supremacy. The game does not end until one player has displaced all the nuts of his opponents. I imagine it usually ends on a bitter note, with the players muttering threats and looking murderous. I think that is where the saying comes from: the agbaarin game only ends when the players go their separate angry ways. Or something along that line.
This is the story of PDP, Africa’s largest political party, steadily lurching down the slope like a drunken rabbit, its forefinger poised to press the self-destruct button.
The Peoples Democratic Party is supposed to have elders who should ensure the safety of the babies strapped to their mothers’ backs in the market. But here the elders have either gone on a long journey or they simply don’t care if their babies are strangled or beheaded in the village square. The young members are either deaf or have chosen to stick wads of cotton wool in their ears so they can’t hear whatever the elders are saying. The cacophony is beyond compare and the broken tongues will make the builders of the Tower of Babel green with envy. In fact, I think the people of Babel are poised to sue PDP for trying to steal their title.
When last did you hear members of the PDP speaking with one voice on anything? And it is a trend that started like joke like joke. When they are not arguing, they are fighting, real brawl in the full glare of the nation. It has been going on for years and now what started like a little smoke in a hut is about to consume the PDP castle. And you know what? They don’t seem to care. Or maybe they can’t feel this smoke choking them or smell the stench from their burning skin. So, what do you call that, a man’s house is on fire and he’s snoring away? If it is not juju, then it has to be madness. When a man’s only child dances round a rattlesnake and tries to lift it with bare hands and the father watches and puffs away on his tobacco pipe, you know something has seriously gone wrong.
Remember how the PDP boiled water and dipped all ten fingers in it in Ogun state? Well, you would think members would have learnt a lesson from the repercussions of their bad ways. No, not in Nigeria’s ruling party. It is only in PDP that the prodigal son does not return home. Even if they did not learn a lesson from the pain of the scalding from the hot water, one would expect that the big scar would remind them of where not to put their fingers. Was it not a divided house that ruined the fortunes of PDP in Ogun? If former President Olusegun Obasanjo and former Governor Gbenga Daniel were working together and all the Ogun PDP elders were not determined to flex their muscles, would they still not be in power and in charge today? But no, they all were, like men under a spell, determined to press the self- destruct button. And they did because it had been pre-destined that Ibikunle Amosun would be governor at some point in his life.
Amosun’s victory reminds me every time of the story of Queen Vashti in the Bible. She was the queen who defied the king and her misbehaviour paved the way for Queen Esther. The word of God is complete: everything works together for the good of those who love God. Esther was queen till she died. Unless you know something Nigerians don’t know, Amosun will do two terms in Ogun state. Don’t ask me if I’m endorsing Governor Amosun because my endorsement doesn’t count for anything. I can’t vote in Ogun and my voice doesn’t mean anything in APC. What I need to be told is the number of times PDP elders in Ogun state went to court to expel, suspend, reinstate and suspend again different members of the different factions of the party. I thought elders are supposed to know that a house divided against itself will not stand.
Just yesterday morning I was watching Channels Television and lo and behold again were two PDP leaders from Ekiti disagreeing in full public glare. One said PDP needed to put its house in order, the other countered with: the PDP house has already been put in order. I almost choked on my tea. Didn’t these men talk before going on set? Couldn’t they at least agree to get to Ekiti before arguing on the state of their umbrella. I went close to my TV as I wondered if the two APC guys on set with them were chanting incantations. What is the matter with this party sef?
And then each time I see photographs of stakeholders’ or reconciliation meetings, I shake my head because the people who need to be reconciled are usually missing at those meets. The people I see laughing and standing from left to right aren’t the people who need to be pacified.
From Oyo to Adamawa today, it is safe to say PDP!!!!! – Divided house. There are factions everywhere. Everybody is a big boy. Everybody has clout. Everybody has money. So nobody is listening to anybody.
Now the demonic cacophony has reached the national level because PDP national leaders are not doing what elders should do and the young ones still have cotton wool in their ears. Everybody is flexing muscles. Threats, veiled and unveiled, are flying all over the place. There are factions at every tier of government. Yet the elders are puffing away on their fat cigars. I guess they still think PDP is indestructible. Ah ah ah, wouldn’t that make me a virgin? If this wasn’t so serious, I’d be laughing. But I can’t laugh because I am worried on behalf of the unworried PDP elders, especially too because each day reminds me of the words of the old man with the white beard: ajatuka ni t’agbarin.
Will this game end on a bitter note like the game of agbaarin? I suspect strongly that it was agbaarin that was used in preparing the concoction that was used to cast a spell on PDP. With the elders folding their arms on their big tummies and everybody digging his heels in, it shouldn’t be long before the party explodes and becomes history. The players are working hard at outdoing one another. Very soon, they will do in one another and PDP will finally be undone.
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