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Clive AkinsolaFriday, July 4, 2014
cakinsol@yahoo.com
USA

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JONATHAN: VALIDATING INTIMIDATION

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s I was oscillating emotionally between utter disgust and disappointment, I just wonder why this president chose to transverse perilous paths of intimidation. History is replete with men who have insatiable appetite for intimidation and their end is not always sweet. Certainly, they may hold sway for a moment but it does not last forever. Intimidation gives birth to violence and eventually breeds terrorism if the intimidator could not get his way. In our country and with a significant degree of certainty, we know the progenitor of intimidation and violence that culminated in the first ever parcel bomb against a citizen of this country. Sadly, they might have gotten away with senselessness because of the weak system that is obtainable in Nigeria. Nevertheless, their conscience is ever troubled because they are hash tagged anytime the name of their victim is mentioned. I hope this will not be the fate of President Jonathan.

The saga preceding the Ekiti State election is a very worrying state of affairs in our country. This sort of pedestrian behavior is attributable to a man cum leader that lacks tact, imagination, courage and creativity. Never mind that Fayose won the election that was fraught with fraudulent mindset from the onset. I'm not talking about election malpractices but a situation where a man choses to exploit the vulnerability of his people, commoditized and played on their collective psyche by distributing rice to win votes. In my view, it is fraudulent and bereft of ideas. More so, the unforeseen consequences are long term, we are losing a new generation of young adults whose minds had been polluted with acerbic corrupt tendencies by this dubious and uncharitable gift which should have been functionally obsolete in the twenty first century.

Now, our young people presume the best way to get ahead in life is through corrupt practices because this is the only mindset they are exposed to by their so called leaders. Moreover, it does not bother anyone, even the judiciary that Fayose has an unsettled case bothering on fraud in a competent court in a sovereign country called Nigeria. All these were happening in the purview of the president who is presiding over illegality.

The angst against this president is that he is trivializing a very serious and fundamental issue bothering on breach of trust. He is flunking on human right issues to the chagrin of this writer. It was absurd for anyone to claim that he got an order from above to stop any citizen of the country from conducting their normal daily business or preventing entry into another state of the federation. He did not call for investigation or probe since he was the "Oga at the top" where the purported order came from. This certainly is not an exciting enterprise; it has culminated in a rare experience in our democratic experience and laid a very dangerous precedence.

The president has contracted his police and armed forces to such a perfidious prank akin to the "unknown soldier" that razed Fela's house. Consequently, every reasonable citizen should take note of this historical shift because the evil men do will surely follow after him or her.

This alleged overarching abuse of the executive power might not be punished now because our democratic institutions are not matured and our judiciary is weak but the day is coming, as it came for the likes of Augustus Pinochet. Crime committed over a decade against the people of this country will still be punishable, so no one should celebrate just yet that they got away with illegality.

What is fueling my deep concern is the fact that the victims (the governors) are not exercising their rights in the law court, they have to be reminded by Prof. Wole Soyinka that this is within their rights as citizens. The senate and the legislators are equally mute on this disturbing development. This overt abdication of their responsibility or civic rights is a deafening ding to the ears of the nation. It seems there is a particular allergy to standing up to things that are right, just and equitable in our society even by those you expect to lead the way.

A little bit of digression, I read an interview in the Vanguard of June 18th 2014 by Mr. Emmanuel Addo where he claimed that the insurgency in the country would give the president a walk over victory come 2015. He reminded those who alleged that the president is clueless, incompetent and all the negative adjectives used to repudiate the president should know he had a Ph.D.

I dare ask, what is the correlation between having a Ph.D. in any subject and competence in governance or perhaps what has it got to do with common sense? If the president is doing well baring all politicking, it is certain that over fifty percent of the people will consent to his ability as a leader and his performance will be glaring for all to see and most interestingly he will be perceived differently but this is not the case. In fact, if Mr. Emmanuel Addo wanted to know how Jonathan's own constituency, the academic community feels about him, he should conduct a survey of lecturers in the nation's universities to gauge their feelings. He will be shocked how embarrassed they are that this president was actually a part of them. It is instructive to note that an Ijaw man, a PhD holder, Prof. Tam David West is also embarrassed at the abysmal performance of this president.

This sort of warped thinking peddled by Mr. Emmanuel Addo is inadvertently responsible for turning things upside down and wrecking this country. People like him do not speak truth to those in power for selfish interest perhaps.

This president has not given us the right vehicle to promote a sense of identity and self-worth in our country. After all, there is rampant kidnapping, bombing, killing and to crown it all, millions of graduates are still unemployed. Higher institutions are underfunded, no regular power supply, and no portable drinking water, all these problems should have been ameliorated by now. Instead all we hear and see is how his co travelers are enriching themselves dubiously.

One foreign observer once said that "we must be crazy as a nation not to provide crude finished product to our people", meaning, we are still importing finished crude product whereas we should have at the minimum tens of refineries. Rightly or wrongly, this is the status quo. In this day and age, our people are still cooking with kerosene, especially in urban cities, in a country where there is abundant natural gas, does anyone think of the attendant health consequences?

The most harrowing disbelief is the letting off of Mohamed Abacha on the faulty premise that they wanted him to checkmate Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, in Kano; considering all the alleged financial crimes of the Abacha family. Nonetheless, the federal government under president Jonathan's watch promised to prosecute this case to its logical conclusion, how then do we take this president serious who seems to be in constant battle between who he is and who he really wants to be. This is the height of perfidy and this misrepresentation of the values of patriotic Nigerians home and abroad is hurting us all.

Through devious and diversionary tactics some people in the president's corner lay blames on Lawal Kaita and his cohort's utterances that the North will make the country ungovernable. It is rather preposterous and ironic that some men's statement will trouble the commander in chief who has the military might at his disposal. He could have used his presumed brilliance, the reality of the goodwill and political currency he had when he was elected to engage the citizenry in order to counter all the nay sayers and prove them all wrong and provide the new generation with a brighter future. In near six years of his misrule, we had not even felt any dividends of democracy because truly he does not have what it takes to deliver the goods.

We are really tired of his antics, we the people need leaders who have the ability to see beyond what the people see, a passionate visionary and deep thinker like Christopher Kolade whose impeccable records speaks for him to the point that they nicknamed him "Mr. Integrity". Perhaps, someone in the molds of Chief Obafemi Awolowo, who was able to crystalize his thought process in the short space of time, with available resources was able to transform a region to the admiration of many. No one could ever accuse him of being clueless because there is concrete evidence to back up his achievement and his records are an open book for all to read.

If this president does not want to sink this nation any further, he should come up with tangible solutions to move the nation forward, for instance, be at the forefront of forming partnership with private companies and individual that could help to alleviate the energy crisis and build more refineries, power plants which will serve as platform for our industrialization. Otherwise, he should re-think his position, come to terms with his limitation as a human being and stop blaming others for his below par performance and lack of foresight and just resign. Even, the ability to come to term with oneself lies in real men who have balls and strong conviction of self-worth.

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