Agreed that democracy is about the serious business of governance, but in Nigeria, it quite often is expressed in funny forms and amusing patterns that cannot but elicit shock and odd elation to a citizenry that is for the most part bewildered, battered and bruised. The almost daily orgy of comical developments in our polity have become a rather potent ritual which often induce a mixture of tears of sadness and sighs of resignation. Welcome to Goodluck Jonathan’s Nigeria!
In the beginning, one of the praise singers who also doubles as what journalists fondly refer to as the ‘attack dog’ of the outgoing President swore with full confidence that the APC will not last nor see the light of day as a party and per chance his prophecy fails, Nigerians should feel free to classify him a bastard. Well, the last time anybody checked, not only did the APC succeed with the merger talks, it also emerged as a strong and credible opposition political party and surprisingly even went ahead to win the 2015 elections overwhelmingly at all levels. For now, the attack dog has gone into hibernation and there is no word yet on the outstanding matter of his call to be classified as a bastard.
Not to be outdone, the attack dog’s senior politician colleague in Lagos threatened to go on exile if President Jonathan loses the 2015 elections. Again, the elections are now a matter of historical record and we still have not seen anyone at the Murtala Mohammed International Airport proceeding on exile. A cheeky friend of mine hilariously suggested that it is either our politician in Lagos is having problems securing asylum or he has actually travelled but left through Aminu kano International Airport. We await word on the true position.
In the continuing cycle of comical missteps, the ‘fugitive’ who the PDP empowered in the southwest to irritate the Balogun of Owu took to town and assured all that bothered to listen to him that the Balogun of owu is a spent force and will have no impact before, during or after the 2015 elections. For good measure the fugitive boasted of his own invisibility. Today, the passage of time has given birth to new realities. Not only did the Balogun of Owu play significant behind the scene roles to facilitate the victory of the APC and Buhari, it is also now common knowledge that he has all but concluded arrangements for the fugitive to be deported to the US to answer to charges of messing around with prohibited white powder.
Now wait for it, in a hilarious twist of developing events, we hear that the erstwhile tough talking fugitive who also succeeded in adding the title of senator-elect to his name is now barricaded inside the master bedroom of his home in Lagos threatening to commit suicide rather than allow his NDLEA pursuers to extradite him to the US. So now, the Balogun of Owu who was ridiculed to be a spent force is cryptically showing that he still has enough force left in him! By the time you read this piece, citizen senator-elect will either be dead by reason of suicide or will be cooling his heels in a US prison waiting to appear before a Federal Judge. Silly power games, you say! You wonder why citizen senator elect refused to learn from history that nobody messes with the Balogun of Owu and ends with a happy story. Those in doubt are welcome to go and ask President Goodluck Jonathan, Bode George, Diepreye Alamieyeseigha, Joshua Dariye and Ayo Fayose to mention but a few.
How about the PDP Chairman who boasted that the PDP will crumble if he is forced to leave the Party. For better effect, he made it clear that he will not resign his position because he was not ready to be ‘used and dumped’. Barely one week after his infamous boast, the Chairman suddenly remembered that he is ill and on the basis of his poor health he threw in the towel or is it the umbrella. Now his former colleagues are assuring party members that they won’t resign. Implication? Expect to see all of them resigning in no distant future – of course, for sundry reasons.
This next one is one of my personal favorites. The madam in charge of finance and the economy woke up one fateful day and told Nigerians that our economy has been rebased and therefore it is now the largest economy in Africa. In fact, FDI into Nigeria is also the highest in Africa. Everything is beautiful. The sky is blue and the sun is shining. All the micro and macro whatever are on the positive side. GDP and inflation things are just fantastic. In short, Nigeria’s economy has never been better and our dear President Jonathan will be leaving behind a very strong and robust economy!!! Days later, the same madam in charge of finance and economy woke up and announced to Nigerians that things have not been easy ooh, the rebased economy is tottering so badly that for some months now they have actually been borrowing money to pay government workers’ salaries. Did I actually hear her correctly say that they are taking loans to fund recurrent expenditure inside this same economy that we were told is strong and stable? Wow!
But wait, there is still more bad economic news. Vice-President elect Professor Osinbajo recently revealed that they will be inheriting at least 60billion dollars debt from the Jonathan administration and he urged Nigerians to tighten their belts and prepare for some serious economic turbulence. That is not all, in the so-called largest economy in Africa, fuel supply is now almost zero and the little there is, is selling for over N150 a litre; water supply has dropped to about 40% and what about power? Depending on where you live in Nigeria, you will be lucky to get one hour of electricity supply in one week. That is how effective and functional the largest economy in Africa has been in recent times. How do we label this one? Perhaps, ‘Goodluck Okonjo and the Economic Comedians’ might not be a bad idea.
But even in the midst of this catastrophic hardship in Nigeria, Nigerians still remain happy and hopeful. So much so that we now have an army of trekkers all over the country. No, they are not trekking because of the fuel scarcity, which I dare say might have been understandable. From all corners of Nigeria, young men and women are trekking long distances supposedly in honor of President elect Buhari and for peace and unity in Nigeria – another cheeky friend of mine says it is massive unemployment that is behind all these trekking. At the last count, they are trekking from Lagos to Abuja, Katsina to Abuja, Enugu to Abuja, Kaduna to Abuja, Abuja to Otuoke, etc. For good measure, another chap in Plateau state decided to be original and carve out a niche for himself. So, rather than trek, he chose to climb a great tree and threatened not to come down from the tree until Buhari is sworn in as President. And so the trekking and climbing continues in this season of anomie. The more I ruminate on all these comical aberrations, the more my mind goes to the germane lyrics of that legend, Fela Anikulapo (Suffering and Smiling) and the optimistic slogan of late Dora Akunyili (Good people, Great nation). Great nation indeed!
Then I remember, her imperial majesty, the madam that manages our oil. In ordinary times, when she speaks, it is as if she did the whole country a favor by agreeing to accept this miserable job of Petroleum Minister. Her arrogance and misplaced air of superiority was simply suffocating. But how are the mighty fallen, tell it not in Abuja. Reports have it that, her imperial majesty has been flying from Minna to Katsina to Kaduna fully wrapped in proper Muslim Hijab seeking audience with the high and powerful who can help put in a good word for her before President elect Buhari in the hope that she might escape the possibility of a lifetime in jail for playing princess with Nigeria’s oil wealth. With all her efforts yielding no positive result, madam became desperate. So much so that she is reported to have ambushed President elect Buhari on his recent trip to the UK. Madam is said to have miraculously conjured up a ticket to be in the same British Airways flight so as to attempt to discuss directly with President elect Buhari and plead for a ‘soft landing’. Sadly, we here the principled General did not give her audience. But our determined madam is not giving up the hunt to track down President elect Buhari in hopes of negotiating a deal that will save her from public disgrace.
How about our talakawa Governor of Jigawa State, Sule Lamido. He came out one day and declared with so much bluster that he alone will constitute a major opposition to President elect Buhari and his APC. The very next day, the news portals were reporting that the one-man-opposition Governor had hurriedly handed over the running of Jigawa State to the Secretary to the State Government (SSG) and was flying out of the country to commence his annual leave. In case you missed the point, this is happening barely a week to May 29, 2015 when he would have formally and properly handed over to his successor before proceeding on his very important leave. Pray, is he going to constitute his one man opposition to Buhari from abroad? But this is Nigeria where, for the most part, politicians have become no more than jokers and jesters mocking governance in the public square and amusing citizens to no end.
But my all season best democratic comedy is the eleventh hour ‘sack and appoint’ game of thrones which outgoing President Jonathan has been playing in the wee hours of his presidency. So entertaining is the President’s script that Nollywood producers will be dying with envy that they didn’t think it up themselves. In the last four weeks of his Presidency, it appears President Jonathan suddenly developed a pathological need to remind and reassure himself that he was still the President and Commander in Chief. And the way the President chose to do this, is to practically sack two or three Chief Executives of a Federal government agency every week and appoint replacements who typically take over ‘with immediate effect’.
This is Nigeria and it is the silly season of the ridiculous which offers the happiest people on earth more than enough reasons to laugh and ignore the man-made-misery that haunts our country and questions our humanity. Depending on your perspective, you may be deeply pained at the tragedy in all these inane posturing and political maneuverings in our polity or you may just have a good laugh at the comical ingenuity and unproductive capacity for mischief of the average Nigerian politician. Whatever your perspective and no matter the reason, please enjoy the season. Like the holy book says, it will come to pass. For now, let us all spare a prayer for President-elect Buhari and get ready to work patriotically with him so that together we can finally build Dora Akunyili’s elusive ‘Great Nation’.
Anthony Ubani, a Leadership Development and Communications Advisor, writes from Abuja.


Chris Kehinde Nwandu is the Editor In Chief of CKNNEWS || He is a Law graduate and an Alumnus of Lagos State University, Lead City University Ibadan and Nigerian Institute Of Journalism || With over 2 decades practice in Journalism, PR and Advertising, he is a member of several Professional bodies within and outside Nigeria || Member: Institute Of Chartered Arbitrators ( UK ) || Member : Institute of Chartered Mediators And Conciliation || Member : Nigerian Institute Of Public Relations || Member : Advertising Practitioners Council of Nigeria || Fellow : Institute of Personality Development And Customer Relationship Management || Member and Chairman Board Of Trustees: Guild Of Professional Bloggers of Nigeria

Previous Post Next Post

نموذج الاتصال