Three things happened over the weekend that are worthy of note with regards to the Nigerian political terrain.pdp logo

The PDP held its National convention amidst fears of violence and physical attacks from disgruntled elements either in the opposition or within the party structure itself. Politics is a bed of strange fellows as the saying goes , so one should always expect in-house squabbles at any time.

The security for the convention was however  water tight. Kudos must be given to the Nigeria Police Force for their professional conduct before and during the event. As it turned out, all security fears were allayed and checked , including the arrest of suspected trouble makers with inciting posters and planned demonstrations to create chaos at the venue.

With regards to the convention proper which was broadcast live to the nation, somethings stuck out showing citizens exactly why the PDP wins general elections in the long run. The party is truly the most democratic of all paraded before us. Take the case of the office of the National Secretary which has a pending court case. The party did not present the office for contest showing respect to the laws courts, despite the fact the a characters involved in the court case petition (Oyinlola) have now been officially identified with a parallel faction of the PDP which has formed a new party. Secondly, Governor Amaechi was again announced as suspended by the party thereby bringing closure to insinuations and suggestions that he was a force to reckon with in the general party structure. His suspension and therefore non participation at the convention further show the insignificance of recalcitrance in a properly organized political structure.

The second interesting observation was the planned walk out by some state Governors. Led by Atiku Abubakar, the G5 Governors including others,
Jigawa, Niger, Sokoto, Rivers, Niger, Adamawa, and Kwara displayed what can only be described as exposing the problem with the PDP. Atiku Abubakar once defected to the ACN, then back to the PDP and now by all indications , he is heading off to the  PDM. The questions that begs answer is this. Would it not be appropriate for Atiku Abubakar to leave the party and found his own party rather than create confusion among Nigerians? What is his plan? He obviously still nurses a Presidential ambition and it is best that he exits the PDP and allow it  focus on the business of managing Nigeria`s affairs. It is clearly obvious now that the challenges of the Government of President Jonathan are not only external, but more so, internal wrangling and hustle for power.

The third and most interesting observation at the convention is the powerful speech by President Jonathan. In a rare moment of display of leadership as expected from the leader of the most populous black nation, he threw the gauntlet down and challenged his critics with bold assertions of his administrations successes and focus since inception.  He stated his administrations achievements  to include improvement in telecoms, agriculture, aviation, transportation, roads, water resources, and education. Furthermore, taking a swipe at what turned out to be defectors and destabilizing elements in the Party and indeed the opposition, he stated,

”We must insist on defending Nigeria from those who threaten her in words and deeds. We are a nation in God’s hands and we must keep it so. Before I leave, let me ask our party men and women one fundamental question and I need the answer yes or no. As a party, have we changed our name? No. As a party, have we changed our logo? No. As a party, have we changed our slogan? No. As a party, have we changed our motto? No. As a party, have we changed our vision? No. No shaking.”

It will be recalled that President Jonathan`s administration drew a new and higher bench mark for stewardship in Nigeria by presenting a Mid Term Report in May 2013. Till this day, the opposition, critics and citizens in general have no been able to fault the facts presented in the report. This is even as The President asked that everyone set up their scores sheets using their own standards. This quite simply shows Nigeria has moved forward with the Transformation Agenda Train. What is hampering some progress is the blatant abuse of freedoms as enshrined in the constitution. Freedom of speech has been abused steadily especially by elders in the polity who have shown a lot of immaturity with their unguarded utterances in the recent past. Their deliberate attempts to undermine the office of the President is indeed reprehensible and belittles the status of ”elder” bestowed on them by the public.

As the convention continues today, we all watch with interest as we witness the official torch bearers of our Democracy, the PDP, display maturity , openness and decorum at their convention. One can only hope that the opposition and other same minor parties will take a cue from this convention which reminds one of the excellent convention of the Democratic party in America that ushered in President Obama.

At the end of the day it is ”we” the good citizens of Nigeria who will be affected by political maneuvering and administration by Government. It is therefore expedient that we keep a close eye on all political parties, identifying those who present candidates who have shown proven loyalty to their peers and party. These are the most likely people Nigerian`s will entrust with higher office come any elections.

Ejiro Eghagha,  Author, Social commentator


Posted on September 1, 2013, in News and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.

  1. Well said, we look to see the strength of the defected Governors and members. Trust me they will all run back begging before the year ends. These guys are selfish and Nigerians are aware now.


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