How to Secure Political Appointment in Nigeria

by Sabella Ogbobode Abidde

The Presidency recently released the names of would-be ministers. And according to dependable sources in Minna and Abuja, the nomination and vetting process was “full of jibiti and wuruwuru; it was dark and clandestine…a world of cloak and dagger.” Another source in Kaduna put it this way: “it was a matter of life and death…more compelling than anything Hollywood could ever conjure up.” Even so, the process is not yet complete as the nominees must still be confirmed by the Senate. As with all things political in Nigeria, the nomination and confirmation process can be tricky, time-consuming, and corruption-laden.

Anything can happen at anytime to dim or enhance one’s chances, and so, many aspirants do not leave anything to providence. And indeed, you have to be a fool to think that your skills, strength of character, education and intelligence alone will get you anywhere in Nigeria. Perhaps for smaller and inconsequential positions; but for ministerial, chair of board, or ambassadorial posts, you’ll need far more than the content of your curriculum vitae or Résumé — although in one or two cases, the president or the governor may hire based on the national or international reputation of the appointee.

With that in mind, here are a few suggestions to bolster your chances: but first, a proviso: do not take my word for it; do not sue me or be angry at me in the event things don’t turn out as you expected. However, should fortune smile on you, do not forget me, do not forget my ten percent. First, you must have a title. Deserved, bought or stolen is irrelevant. What matters is that you be a Dr., a Professor, an Engineer, Architect, Surveyor, Accountant or whatever. Whatever professional or academic title you have, you must preface it with a chieftaincy title, i.e. Chief-Dr, or Chief-Professor. If you lack a title, forget it. You are wasting your time.

Second, join a winning political party. If you are already a member of a loosing party like the AC or the ANPP or any of the waning parties, you must be willing to decamp. What’s the benefit of being a member of the walking-death-party like the ADC, APS, NDP or the FDP? In the event you are already a big-shot in your party and you want to flee, be sure to hold a dubious world press conference, announcing your decampment. Afterwards, throw a one-of-a-kind party to announce your exit and arrival. It is good to be noticed!

Third, you must belong to a very powerful Church and have a very powerful pastor or religious leader as your guide. Belonging to a well known Church serves two selfish purposes: the benefit of spiritual assistance from a religious godfather; and the appearance of born-againism. You don’t have to be a believer, just belong to a mega-Church and wear your religion on your sleeves. Religion, for the most part, is for show. It is the same for the Muslims: look for a powerful Imam. And please don’t forget to go on pilgrimage to Saudi Arabia. Alhaji, Alhaja or Jerusalem pilgrim (JP) will enhance your standing in the social and political community.

Fourth, whether you are a Muslim or a Christian doesn’t really matter. You will also need the guidance and protection of a high priest or priestess from a voodoo or juju shrine. Nigeria is famous for its Babalawos, marabouts, and medicine men. Human and animal sacrifice, paying allegiance to gods and involvement in all sorts of things unholy and forbidden by the Koran, the Bible, and common sense is all part of the game. The good news is that should the Bible or the Koran fail, you can always fall back on juju or on whatever backup you may have.

Fifth, you must have a Godfather who is either a money man, a political heavyweight or both. Either way, you’ll be selling your voice, your vision and your conscience. Once you pay your allegiance, he will go to bat for you, paving ways and making waves for you. However, should you decide to withdraw or change camp, you are likely to be destroyed or sent into political exile for a long time. In most case, your political career will likely come to an end.

Sixth, if you don’t have a Godfather, then, you must be a money-man in your own right. Some of the past governors — especially those from the oil-producing states — may never lack money to buy their ways (in and out) again. By all accounts, they stole enough money to last them a dozen life times. The money they stole, along with the dubious contracts and Ghana-Must-Go they gave to friends and cronies, allowed them to build political bridges to and from all section of the country.

In addition to these chance-fortifying steps, prospective political appointees must also agree to the followings (in fact, in some sections of the country, these are the make or break requirements):

  • Belong to a syndicate that launders money, drugs, or other illicit political goods and services.
  • You must belong to several social clubs
  • You must belong to secret societies like the Ogboni, the Freemasonry and others
  • You must be willing to “sell” your soul, sell your father, mother, wife or any member of your family; and be willing to engage in any sort of rituals.

If after all these, you still are not able to secure your preferred political post, my advice is for you to go for your second, third or fourth choice. After all, it is better to be in the corridor of power than be outside of the beltway. As we use to say in Government Secondary School, Ilorin: “No condition is permanent.” Indeed, you may be a lowly rated commissioner today, but push the right and lucky button and you may be appointed an ambassador tomorrow. Or even a minister. And if all else fail, try and try again.

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1 comment

Anonymous July 13, 2007 - 11:58 am

Jesus loves you Sabella. Whether you know, love him or not. He loves you and knows you so intimately he knows the number of hairs on your head. I pray you must recieve in your life before you live this earth as we surely must.


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