Read Buhari’s leaps, not lips in Kano

Little Aisha and Kano State Governor Umar Ganduje (left) welcoming President Muhammadu Buhari on his arrival at the Aminu Kano International Airport Kano on his two-day working visit to Kano State on Wednesday, December 6, 2017. PHOTO: PHILIP OJISUA

There is no need discerning the president’s body language about 2019 presidential election declaration anymore. Did you read his leaps, or hip lips? The taciturn Muhammadu the soldier and Buhari the politician will surely run – as long as his health remains stable as it is at the moment. The Mission to Kano, his stronghold last week was a loud dress rehearsal. And the people of the ancient town have signalled to the only politician they can trust to take the plunge again. He has been told (in Kano) that even ten Wazirin Adamawas can’t remove any steam from political support that the epitome of loyalty called Governor Umar Abdullahi Ganduje can guarantee for him in 2019.

Ganduje is indeed a politician in whom there is no guile. Buhari can always trust him to deliver more than two million votes in 2019. What is more, we may have been carried away by some infantile sentimentality in the southern zone that some extreme hunger and pervasive poverty in the land now can erode the Buhari’s once solid base in the core north. Some boisterous social media analysts may have told us that no one wants to hear about Sai baba slogan again because of anger nurtured by hunger in the north. This may not be true, after all.

Buhari remains the only political leader the power elite and even the hoi polloi (the masses) can trust. They fervently believe that he is the only Nigerian leader that can fight the barau (looters) believed to have destroyed Nigeria. They believe only him. The power elite in the north who are even aware of so many limitations of the lanky General can’t lose sight of the fact too that the only name that can guarantee them re-nomination and continued stay in office and power as governors, national and state assembly members and local government chairmen, councillors, etc is Buhari’s.

Certainly, the veteran soldier who was received by a quiet and very organised operator in Kano, Ganduje last Wednesday already predicted his own 2019 victory in the city as reported by the influential Abuja-based Daily Trust. This is the account in the lead story of the newspaper on Thursday December 7, 2017:

President Muhammadu Buhari yesterday said he would still win an election in Kano State because of the overwhelming reception he got at the start of his two-day visit.
The president spoke when he paid homage to the Emir of Kano Muhammadu Sanusi II in his palace.
“I am overwhelmed by the reception the people of Kano offered to me. This has indicated that I can still win an election in Kano. The people of Kano are aware of the tremendous jobs we did on security and agriculture,” Buhari said.
He said his government had played significant roles in restoring peace and harmony in the northeast.
“We have recorded tremendous successes in our efforts to achieve the three agenda of my government; security, economy, and fight against corruption,” he said.

“Nigeria, Chad and Niger Republic have succeeded in crushing Boko Haram insurgents in the Northeast. The countries have come together to fight a common goal because without peace and stability we cannot achieve anything,” he said.

President Buhari said the north is important to the country, because “If there is peace and stability in the north, there will be peace and stability in the whole country and if there is a problem in the region it will affect the entire country.”
The president said he had seen a lot in politics since he joined it in 2003, adding that Nigerians must understand the difference between democratic and military administration.

“When I was the military head of state, I arrested many people and jailed them for alleged corruption and in the end, I also ended in a jail,” he said.He lamented that from 1999 to 2014, Nigeria got so much wealth but it was misused.
“They squandered the money and we still don’t have a constant power supply, no good education for our children and we don’t have good hospitals and roads,” he said.

Speaking on his relationship with the emirate, he said “Kano Emirate Council has contributed a lot to my life. Whatever I become in my life, I always consult the Kano Emirate Council.” 

Another icing on the cake of the political Mission to Kano: the President granted amnesty to 500 inmates of the Kano Central Prison situated at Kurmawa, which has 1,398 inmates as opposed to 750, the established capacity.The inmates including men and women were selected from the Central Prison also received undisclosed cash from the compassionate President for them to start small-scale businesses. Specifically the 500 inmates were either pardoned or set free upon the payment of fines by the Kano State Governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje.

Besides, the president noted that the APC change mantra is working in Kano where he commissioned a multi-billion naira 500-bed Giginyu Ultramodern Hospital. He urged other governors to emulate their Kano counterpart, Abdullahi Umar Ganduje by executing more people-oriented projects in their states.

Speaking shortly before he commissioned the hospital, Buhari noted that Governor Ganduje is executing the agenda of the ruling All Progressive Congress (APC) in the state through execution of projects that had a direct impact in the lives of the electorate.
“The APC change is real and is for all Nigerians irrespective of their beliefs, tribe, ethnic and or party differences. The APC change agenda is working in Kano. I’m highly impressed with what Governor Ganduje is doing in Kano.” Note the president’s emphasis on APC.

“I am urging other states governors to emulate Ganduje by executing similar projects in their states.  I’m proud to see this kind of gigantic project executed for the people of Kano. I commended Ganduje for trying to make life easier for Kano People,” Buhari said.

What else do we need to confirm why former Vice President Atiku Abubakar had to rush back to his first love, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) after realizing that for APC 2019, no vacancy for anyone else.

This is not strange in Nigeria, our Nigeria since 1966 when the president’s allies overthrew democracy and suspended federalism, our paradise lost, we have been trying to redeem. Yes, it is no longer fearful that PMB can win again. He can win because fiends of democracy are either helpless or not so serious. Regardless of the outcome of the PDP’s convention, there will still be no redemption song for democracy and development – unless there are fighters again – as was done before 1999.

There is no doubt that neither APC nor PDP can rebuild Nigeria’s broken walls. The two political parties are morally bankrupt. They lack ideological steadfastness to develop one of the most misruled nations on earth. Are there people who will genuinely pray that PDP should return to power? Are there still incurable optimists that would like APC to continue with the level of mediocrity, hypocrisy and ideological barrenness they have unleashed on the most populous black nation on earth?

Just as Sam Rosenfeld notes in his classic on the rot in Washington, DC, The Polarizers, as if it was written on Abuja, even in this most partisan and dysfunctional of eras, we can all agree on one thing: Abuja is broken. Politicians take increasingly inflexible and extreme positions, leading to gridlock, partisan warfare, and the sense that our seats of government are nothing but cesspools of hypocrisy, childishness, and waste. The shocking reality, though, is that modern polarization has been a deliberate project carried out by PDP and APC activists. And they can’t be bothered in our culture of low expectation!

It is rather unfortunate that we are on the march again, on the same spot towards 2019. There has been no indication that the power elite will work for Nigeria this time. It is business as usual with only the APC and the PDP, our politicians use only as recruitment platforms as prescribed by the constitution. They are after all, one and the same entity, one in power and the other one temporarily out of power. For 16 years PDP was in power from 1999 to 2015. No one can recall any significant and sustainable achievements they left. Most of the actors in PDP changed camp and moved to APC to remain in power since 2015. There are strong indications already that APC’s even eight years in power with this baba go-slow in a digital age will leave Nigeria worse than the PDP, no one prays to return.

The point must be made clear to all these public holidays-loving political actors in Abuja that fighting a few corrupt people with arrest before investigations and containing insurgency with one of the six geo-political zones in the country should not be concrete reasons a political party should seek to remain in power. There are weightier matters of statecraft Nigerians are bound to be excited about. It is clear that neither PDP nor APC as they are now, can fix the national question. Former President Obasanjo (1999-2007) could not fix Nigeria’s critical infrastructure. His successor, Umaru Yar’Adua’s tenure 2007-2010 could not be eventful beyond the 10-lane roads from Abuja city centre to the airport and Madala, the capital’s boundary with Niger State, he initiated. The projects remain uncompleted since 2008.

Goodluck Jonathan’s 2010/2011-2015 could not complete even the East-West Roads in his Niger Delta. It is apparent specifically that neither PDP nor APC can fix anything significant. They can’t fix roads in the country (they fly over all the bad roads). They can’t fix our refineries or build new ones. They can’t fix electricity. They can’t give us good airports and seaports. They can’t really fight corruption with corruption. Though they are always sick, they can’t fix hospitals and clinics.They can’t give us a good legislature.They can’t fix the filthy citadel of justice. They can’t handle the economy. They can’t fix Nigeria. These are the things the president’s men and the APC should reflect on before manifesting the campaign office for 2019 presidential election.

That is why friends of democracy here and good people should rise up and point us toward a new consensus. Since our complacency created today’s dysfunctional environment, we can deliberately change it by rejecting return of the old setup.Yes, for Buhari’s APC, it may not be difficult to find a strategic partner in either the confused southeast or the polluted southwest to win 2019 election again and remain in power. But what is the essence of winning election again and remaining in power without a strategic plan to develop the country that is already failing?
Inside Stuff Grammar School:
Mediocrity Vs Mediocre, Again.

I would like to repeat this here since it has been noticed that most users here do not want to look it up in a dictionary: Mediocreis used originally as a qualifier, an adjective. It is not correct to call anyone a mediocre. Note: anyone who displays a mediocre performance is a mediocrity, (not a mediocre) as it is commonly used here. There can only be a cabinet of mediocrities, (not mediocres).

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