That provoking title evokes the dusty memory of adultery of one of evangelical overlords. The notorious king Herod. Herod was the insatiable philandering king. He stole the wife of his brother. The wife of Philip. I suspect a secret consent. Herodias the un-heroically smitten woman had her greatest desire. She became the queen. Her first act of evil was to consort with her daughter and had John the Baptist murdered.
John the Baptist was the town crier. He heralded the coming of Jesus Christ. He was meant to be apolitical. Somehow, Herod’s sacrilege stirred his apostolic conscience. He nailed Herod for both adultery and wickedness. Herod not only dispossessed Philip. He also raped common decency. This act of extreme adultery and murder distinguished Herod’s royal contribution to ecclesiastical repertoire.
President Goodluck Jonathan is a king – king of kings. He presides over a thoroughly moronic mass of humanity called Nigerians. He rules as president over 160million people. To use biblical word, 160 million brethren. Using brethren is not sexist. In biblical time, brethren was the common usage for both male and female. Got the metaphor? Right? Therefore, it is safe to say that 160million Nigerians are joined to Jonathan. In the heart. In the waist. Jonathan is our brother. And our president by the immutable fact that he sits on the throne chair of Aso Rock.
Nigeria is the bride in matrimonial contention. She is the overgrown adult. Indeed, she has passed her bridal respectability. 160million brethren adore and love this 52 year old ageless bride called Nigeria. One day in May 2011 we lost the bride. Goodluck Ebele Azikiwe Jonathan the gumless anti-hero stole the bride. Our bride. He stole his brethren’s bride!
The memory of that theft still burns. In our hearts. Former leader, Mohammadu Buhari will swear on his leather-bound Koran that Jonathan stole his brethren’s bride. Buhari’s fighting subtext is clear. Jonathan rigged the presidential election. Through the dark art of faceless PDP cabal. It is now more than obvious that PDP is a caricature of evil greed, raw power and wanton impunity. It is a politico-jihadist party of do-or-die moneybags. Many of them are aging thugs. PDP loves power. It hates responsibility and accountability.
Though Jonathan is the president, yet he could not break out of the gravity pull of the biggest political rascals in Africa. Biggest party – what an infuriating pride! Now, Jonathan has wagon his presidential destiny to that of his newly elected chairman. Alhaji Bamanga Tukur. Tukur has the Midas touch. His pedigree runs into many mileages of corporate conquests. He wants Tukur, a superhuman Nigerian to start charging his regularly low battery. Remotely. “Please tell me when I’m wrong”, so said our humble and clueless young president to his newly elected septuagenarian party chairman.
The president is now captive to the whims of bam..bam Bamanga! A voluntary captive to the silly directives of PDP and its self-preserving diktat. His party’s pronouncement on national question now takes precedence before the nation he rules. What perfidy. What abdication of Nigeria’s constitution. We now know what burden his presidency has exerted on all Nigerians – his brethren. We bought his humble face. We bought his shoeless past in the swampy, sleepy Otueke. We opened Jonathan from the outside. We did not look inside. We did not open him from the inside. We fell for the emotional scripting of his penniless, slipper-less pedigree. Lies! Lies! Lies!
President Jonathan’s guileless character is unravelling. Badly. We have the wrong man in the throne room. He has shut his mind against the truth on the scaffold.
It is terrible that criminal brigandage is going on in high places. Our moral compass bows to the evil of corruption daily. Jonathan, in consonant with cabal-in-cash stole Nigeria. His brethren’s wife. Jonathan was then installed. Yes, as a gatekeeper. Yes, as a political stooge. Yes, as a mugu-moron to the dynastic dictates of the few people who own Nigeria.
Jonathan not only stole his brethren’s wife but stole much more. He stole our trust. The image of a dirt poor, dispossessed and colourless Ijaw man was a PR coup. He hoodwinked us with pitiable dimension of his past. He won. Not through argument, but by sheer emotional appeal. The trust has evaporated.
Jonathan stole our confidence. The conscious confidence of fictitious 22 million voters is now ash in our mouth. His loudest optimists have all surrendered to forlorn hopelessness. His presidential inaction is far more prominent than his vitality. Consider the Lawan report on the oil subsidy corruption. Someone smart would have removed the Minister of Petroleum Resources and great many others. Jonathan is confronted with a devastating report. A report that catalogues our systemic corruption. Indeed, a report that exposes how Nigeria’s corporate wealth drains into few pockets requires action that embodies and expresses the yearning of Nigerians for justice. Petroleum subsidy corruption is bluntly high economic crime against the humanity of all Nigerians.
The president stole our destiny. Corruption is the destiny destroyer. Petrol wealth reshapes the destiny of desert nations of Saudi and Dubai into lands of riches, opulence and opportunities. In Nigeria, the same petrol dollar has been used to destroy our collective destiny through corruption.
This monster, this orthodoxy we all hope Jonathan will supplant has emerged to be the very marker of his administration. We live uneasily side by side in an ugly geographical capsule. The destiny of Nigeria is tied together by sheer force of arms.
Nigeria is the most backward federal union in the world both in religious, political, economic and tribal terms. If northerners want the republic of Boko Haram, why not? Republic of Oduduwa. Why not? Republic of Biafra. Why not? Other smaller republics. Why not? This is not pious idealism. This is a tough-minded idealism forged through a realistic assessment of our past and present cynicism. But never. The slacker, fainthearted and vision-deficient Jonathan prefers the bombs and genocide of Boko Haram to an enduring peaceful destiny for all Nigerian nationalities. The destiny of Nigerians is lost to his absolutist rejection of Sovereign National Conference. Yes, the gateman syndrome!
Worse, he stole our future. Corruption, greed and desire for power have conspired to blunt his conscience to do right for Nigerians. Where is Jonathan’s capacious sense of posterity? Someday he is going to die. That is the way of all flesh. Even all flesh eaters. Like the cabal in PDP. Does he want to be buried in oblivion? Or to be buried and his legacy goes marching on? Like the timeless legacy of Pa Awo.
The last word in leadership is not power, influence, accumulation of wealth, party loyalty, tribal intimidation, violence, impunity against ghost opponents or force but service and material improvement to the brethren – the people of Nigeria. Jonathan is the metaphorical Herod of our time. You stole your brethren’s wife. But this pen crier’s head will not come on your platter.