Will You Vote For These PDP Politicians?

As the clock continues to tick towards the coveted 2011 general elections in Nigeria, political activities have resumed in full earnest. And, expectedly, the concomitant intrigues have continued to, by the day, snowball into an avalanche of great spectacle. Political actors have continued, en masse, to crawl out of their crevices to signal their intentions of vying for political offices that will be up for grabs in the coming elections.

With INEC timetable finally released recently, and trumpet of declarations of aspirations and candidacies being sounded from left and right, fireworks are now completely lit in Nigerian political theatre. Front-pages of newspapers are being strewed with sensational, screaming headlines that are anything but captivating. Daily, with great incredulity, periodicals feed us with the news of buddies who were hitherto thought to be inseparable but who have now, surprisingly, transmogrified into bitter and implacable adversaries; and, also, on the other hand, we continue to be inundated by reportages of how former foes are forming political alliances, and thereby laying credence to the saying that, sometimes, the cat and the mouse make friends over the carcass!

Even those who have been thought to be annihilated in public life and issued political death certificate by pundits have grandiosely made remarkable comebacks into the fray of politics. As it’s always been – and will always be – during electioneering, every Tom, Dick and Harry is histrionically jostling to be the next Nigerian president, the next state governor, the next senator, etc., as the case may be.
Gradually, the act of propagandism, of skullduggery is already being fine-tuned to an art, and the kite of embellishment and cajolery flying to its apogee. The worst scoundrels and the most notorious criminals in Nigeria, who should, ordinarily, in a sane society, be inhabiting in gaols, are brazenly seeking to have their names on the ballot in the next general elections at all cost.

Renowned rogues and charlatans in Nigerian society who have carved imperishable niches for themselves as men of dishonor and ignominy, men whose moral reprehensibility is indescribable, are increasingly advertising themselves as complete gentlemen and epitome of probity, and beseeching the electorate for their mandate “for a better tomorrow”. Even the incumbents who evidently bludgeoned themselves to governorships through stolen mandates and methodology of terror are not left out. They are also supplicating, “let us do it again…imagine another four years”!

In spite of the monumentally blatant failure and grotesque incompetence of most of these incumbents, they – like one infamous professor from Imo state by the name “Iwu” once moronically did – have awarded themselves excellent pass marks, and are seeking “another chance”. Demagoguery, of course, one of the most potent and verifiable arts used by deceitful politicians during electioneering to bamboozle and swindle the gullible and unsuspecting electorate, has continued to, with increasing rapidity, find its rhythm in Nigerian political scene.

Indeed, and in validation to J.P Clark’s powerful apothegm, “politicians always look forward to the next election”. These politicians, once aptly and succinctly described as “men with mediocre mentality” by W.P. Pitkin, have, in words of Nikita Khrushchev, continued to, in the course of their campaigns, “promise to build bridges even where there’s no river”, with some even pledging to solve problems that are essentially beyond the jurisdiction of the office they are craving. Personally, I have seen the poster of one councillorship aspirant vowing to provide free education and invest massively in agriculture!

In spite of all these promises being repeatedly made by these politicians since Nigeria’s return to civilian administration over a decade ago, Nigerians remain mired in extreme poverty and are often involuntary pilgrims in dungeon of uncertainty. The dividends of democracy are still a fantasy to the generality of the populace after every election; it is only the residence of these politicians in the ruling party, their kins and factotums that continue to play host to and enjoy the company of “dividends” of democracy.

Nigeria, a nation filled with promises and already buzzing with gaiety and gleeful hullabaloo when the military were handing over the reigns of power to the civilian in 1999, has been made to completely become a desolate valley of despair and hopelessness. The party predominantly in power since Nigeria’s return to civil rule in 1999, the PDP, diametrically turned the Nigerian dream into a frightening nightmare.

When it seemed Nigeria had found light at the end of the tunnel, when they thought they had found a Moses that would lead them from Egypt to the Promised Land, the PDP trumped a coup by handing the nation under the captaincy of an incubus who not only madly saw the icebergs as his preferred path of navigation, but conscientiously sailed the ship toward perdition.

Plucked from his prison cell and catapulted into the presidency by a group of oligarchs, Obasanjo, a repulsively barbarous baboon once correctly likened to Nebuchadnezzar by the immortal Gani Fawehinmi, left no stone unturned in ensuring that he, apart from instituting policies that effectively led to the pauperization of generality of Nigerians, perpetuated himself in the office of Nigerian presidency till perpetuity.

In achieving this insane objective, this former-man-of-war-cum-politician brazenly sought to have the constitution of the country amended to illegally allow him third term in office. In spite of his trite pontification against corruption while in office, his actions suggested otherwise as he unabashedly elevated the worst political characters in his party and the Nigerian society to exalted offices and gave them unfettered freedom to pilfer from the nation’s treasury.

With his strange algorithm, the more unscrupulous, the more reprobate the politicians in his party were, the more accelerated their elevation to the pinnacle of political power. In illustrating this Otta farmer’s ghastly peculiarity, let’s quickly take a stock of a number of his shenanigans.

When Iyiola Omisore was kicked out of the Alliance for Democracy, AD, for his recurrent acts of insurrection and anti-party activities, and was consequently impeached as the deputy governor of Osun state by the then house of assembly, he summarily became a political outcast. While in wilderness, he, in desperation to reclaim panoply of power, besought the PDP for membership which was, fortunately for him, granted. With his membership firmly secured in the party, this scrofulous tyke was galvanized to prove to Obasanjo and other leaders of the party that he possessed some of the essential characteristics needed to thrive in the PDP.

Indeed, it wasn’t long before this freshman publicly showcased his talent in rascality and ruthlessness to a height of excellence, and thus deepening his root in this his new political fraternity. Right at the palace of Ooni of Ife, Iyiola Omisore openly led an assault on the then Attorney General of the federation and Minister of Justice, Chief Bola Ige, who’d been his antagonist and a vociferous martinet that was always chastising him for his impertinence, and also one of the party chieftains that sanctioned his expulsion from the AD.

Obviously, this public humiliation couldn’t have left Chief Ige to happily embrace Omisore or throw garlands at his feet. With his ire clearly drawn, this former governor of old Oyo State was said to have sternly rebuked his assailant. In validation to a Yoruba adage that says “if a dog has the full backing of a human being, it will hunt down a monkey”, indeed, Iyiola Omisore, being backed by the fiefdom of the PDP, didn’t disguise his determination to hunt down Chief Ige . Accordi

ngly, he was said to have even promised this ridiculed minister more doses of terror; and, indeed, just a few days later, the country was awaken with a terrorizing news: The Minister of Justice of federal republic of Nigeria, Chief Bola Ige, had been gruesomely murdered in cold blood.

Even, without endowment with the gift of clairvoyance or being a special investigative agent with the FBI, suspicion and fingers of most Nigerians were all but rightly pointed to the direction of Iyiola Omisore as the prime suspect in the assassination. Vowing to bring the perpetrators to book, Obasanjo mandated Nigerian security agencies to uncover those behind the murder. Consequently, after a series of soap opera, Omisore was arrested and later arraigned in court.

His trial, however, turned out to be a mixture of drama and befuddlement. In the course of the litigation, the more the hook of the prosecution seemed to have gone deeper into the sea of evidence and looked certain to have caught a fish that could establish the guilt of this accused and lead to his conviction, the more uncannily clogged it became on its way back up. To utter befuddlement of Nigerians, judges after judges whose courts played host to the trial continued to surreptitiously chicken out in the adjudication of the case. One of them, distended to liberate his conscience, confessedly cited “untoward pressure” from some “unexpected quarters” as his reason of discontinuing the hearing.

And, in the most dramatic fashion, Iyiola Omisore, the man standing trial in the murder of the Chief Law Officer of Nigeria, right still in detention, contested for election in the senatorial district of this fell minister and miraculously “won” in a landslide. Eventually, in a shambolic and farcical manner, he was later discharged and acquainted. Today, this rapscallion is not just a celebrity in the PDP but he still remains a law maker in Nigerian, and hence in the capacity of Chairman of the Senate committee on Appropriation and Budget; and, after violently coasting to yet another “victory” in the do-or-die election of 2007, is said to have received Obasanjo’s blessing to be next governor of Osun State in 2011.

The chronicle of political brigandage of the PDP will be incomplete without mention being made of the progenitor of “Amala politics”, Lamidi Adedibu, the man whom Obasanjo and his PDP gangsters gave unfettered support in the deployment of violence and intimidation in plundering the hapless masses of Nigerians that Obasanjo was meant to be presiding over. Later nicknamed “Garrison commander of Oyo State politics”, this disgusting curmudgeon recruited, commissioned and led an army of thugs and street urchins in rigging elections in Oyo state and delivering the state into the captive of the PDP.

At the behest of Obasanjo, this old thug single-handedly transmuted Oyo State into a beehive of terrorism and a conglomerating hub of topsy-turvydom. Today, thanks to Obasanjo’s avid support, insecurity is of immense preponderance in Oyo state. At one gathering in Ibadan shortly before the do-or-die 2007 elections, when Obasanjo was publicly besieged by some aggrieved victims of Adedibu’s terrorism, he cavalierly asked them to learn to tolerate the man. He blathered, “Baba Adedibu is an old man and it is morally unethical to correct and chastise an elderly fellow no matter what he does wrong…he’s become a dried fish that cannot be bent”!

Although, this monster known as Adedibu is now late but the monstrosity he created with Obasanjo’s support is still very much alive in Oyo state. Development and good governance are as alien in Oyo State as water is in a desert. If Alao Akala, the scumbag whom Adedibu and Obasanjo SELECTED as the governor of the state, is not mindlessly junketing around the world at the expense of the tax payers, he is either partying or womanizing. With this misfit at the driving seat of government, the vehicle of progress of the state is certain to be in reverse gear. Alao Akala, a governor famed to be bleaching his skin, has, since he was whisked to the government house of Oyo state, pre-occupied himself with the task of destroying the legacies of exemplariness hitherto associated with the state.

Whenever he’s not at loggerheads with the civil servants and pensioners over entitlements and emoluments, Akala is either embroiled in bout with the teachers union or scuffling with medical practitioners over arrears. With poverty and unemployment in the state at their all-time zenith, qualitative education and infrastructural development are as good as non-existent. According to a recent observation made by Nuhu Ribadu recently, Ibadan, the capital of Oyo state, is the only city in the world where water is found on the bridge!

Maladministration, as typified by Akala’s government, is, however, by no means a peculiarity to Oyo state alone. A visit to Ogun, Osun, Kogi, Delta, Jigawa, Benue, Akwa-Ibom, Yobe and other states in the captivity of the PDP will uncover the same prevalence of ineptitude, the same stench of incompetence and underdevelopment, and culture of depravity.

But, surprisingly, and quite interestingly, all these PDP governors and politicians, in spite of their palpable inanity to give desired and inspiring leadership to citizenry of their states and move the country forward, seem to compensate for this lacuna with their towering mastery in making themselves stupendously wealthy while the generality of the citizenry wallow in dire poverty. One never ceases to wonder whether they actually pluck all the monies they gaudily flaunt from a magic tree.

There’s a Yoruba dictum that goes thus, “ko so mo re ninu ibon”, meaning, “nothing good ever comes out of the barrel of a gun”. Given all the gloomy indices and unexampled wantonness that have characteristically become the raison d’être of the PDP, anyone guided by scruple will be inescapably led to a considered view that nothing good can ever come out of the party.

As the 2011 elections continue knocking on the door, it’s only two categories of the Nigerian electorate that are likely to endorse PDP candidates to rule or continue (mis)ruling them. One: Members of families and friends of these candidates who will, directly or indirectly, benefit from their pillage. Two: Masochistic group of people who, in spite of the agony they’ve been perennially subjected to by the PDP, still naively think anything good can ever come out of an AK-47 even if one of its bullets is named “Goodluck”.

Written by
Yinka Leo Ogundiran
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