President Obasanjo has intimated us that he knows those who would not succeed him. He has also made it clear that the Vice-President is not his favorite person, not to mention the issue of being his successor. President Obasanjo has also made ample preparation for life after the presidency with the questionable, if scandalous, Presidential Library foundation launching.
Although all politicians in Nigeria have been smeared with the corruption tar, the current president has sought to part ways with the past at great cost. In seeking for fiscal responsibility, he had put the golden cow (oil and gas) under his personal supervision in order to stanch the hemorrhaging in the sector. He had through his ministers spoken, then, taken steps to plug the looting loopholes. The governors were warned, Dariye was arrested in London, and he jumped bail. Alamie was then caught in same London on his way back from Germany. He fought the courts through his lawyers and his publicist put their spin on why he was arrested with over one million Pounds Sterling.
Both Dariye Alamie had as their alocutus, the excuse that they were arrested because they are in the bad books of OBJ by supporting the Veep instead of the C-in-C. If that is true the governors must be very naïve indeed. Only in Nigeria can a Vice President raise his claws against his boss while in office. Even if the Veep was the power behind the throne (which is not conceded) the Veep should have learned from other wiser fore-runners the saying “he must increase while I decrease”. OBJ has made anti-corruption and the reformation of government his major plank; question is, is the Veep following, even nominally? OBJ would naturally think; if Atiku takes over would he continue in the same direction?
Professionals Brought On
Nigerians, especially those in the Diaspora had continuously urged the president to bring on the professionals into government and to give them free reign to fix the economic mess and ensure a smooth system as obtains in the diverse foreign places of refuge they had run to. After much prevarication, the president acceded in search of a sound foundation of reforms and a good legacy for himself. Because our economy is mono-culture and we were neck-deep in debt without a clue as to how to steer in the maze of international finance without honoring our debt servicing obligations, the western based professionals were lured home to help. In show of approval in negotiation with one of their own, the Paris Club gave Nigeria a breather. While it is still being debated whether or not what we received was the best deal that could have been procured, the fact remains that there was at least a deal signed and sealed, because Ngozi was there to make it happen. I do not overlook the power of presence of Professor Soludo and the others, but Ngozi is the primary face given to the deal.
Politics of Continuity
One of the greatest problems of Nigeria and most third world economies is the lack of continuity. In light of this factor, most international investors are wary of long term investments and in Nigeria; they are presently especially concerned as to who would succeed OBJ for good cause. If there is a crackdown on corruption illegal bunkering and Dollar round-tripping by banks for instance, the Naira rates may stabilize. A prospective investor may be attracted to invest long term. If the government changes hands and the new set of rulers decide that they prefer to loot ad-infitum with no processes put in place to continue with the little gains, the investor’s trepidation would have been justified. That may be why OBJ may be interested in who succeeds him to continue his legacy. What better person than his Minister of Finance?
The Igbo Question
The Igbo Question would also be settled if Ngozi is supported, groomed and elevated to the Presidency. She is already presidential (temper and all). She has Charisma, exposure within Nigeria and internationally and has a proven track record that can stand scrutiny. The icing on the cake is that she is younger and of Igbo descent. If the major tribes have ruled repeatedly for years and the Igbos could not get to the pie because they could not rally together, OBJ has inadvertently brought out a beautiful creation of Ndigbo to the fore. The Ikemba, Chief Ekwueme, Chief Iwanyanwu, and the other Igbo Elders could call for a brotherly meeting to anoint her and settle Governor Orji Kalu in the interest of peace to back his sister or to vie for the in-house Igbo primary election with her as the other candidate.
How Liberia beat us to it is the question on most minds but consolation is in the fact that they beat even the US to it except if you believe the apocryphal story that Bill was jus Hillary’s errand boy in their joint presidency. Seriously, Women have taken over in Germany and Liberia. Even ambitious women are cannot be as crude with Ghana Must Go as we have seen manifested. If OBJ gives us this present of Ngozi, he would be ensuring his legacy as well as stemming the crocodiles waiting by the river’s edge for him to step out of the murky waters of Nigerian politics for them to eat up all the small fishes. Of course Ngozi would need her First Gentleman by her side and a smart lawyer like me on the other side to whisper and point out to her the traps and mine-fields buried deep down-under.
Third Term Agenda?
Na Sakara oloje ni.
Ngozi For President
Tell me what you think; OBJ;