LAGOS 2007: Neither Koro nor Fashola

2 Comments » April 1st, 2007 posted by // Categories: General Articles



NEITHER KORO NOR FASHOLA BY Lekan Sanni

On 29th May 2007, when the Chief Judge of Lagos state mounts the podium to administer the oath of office to the duly elected Governor of Lagos, it would not come as a surprise that neither the lackey of out-going Governor Tinubu, Babatunde Fashola, nor the PDP flagbearer, Musiliu Obanikoro, would step up to take that oath.
 
Contrary to the campaign rhetoric of the warring AC and PDP parties, both actually emanate from the same political stable. For example, those who hold the reign of power within the AC are mostly PDP rejects with the exception of a handful like Tinubu, whose main motivation is to procure a new federal government that will not demand retribution for the financial impropriety of his administration.

Lagos has never been comfortable with the likes of the AC or PDP as both lack progressive pedigree. Since state creation in 1967, Lagos has always been propelled by the progressive ideals of Awoism (the political philosophy and teachings of late Chief Obafemi Awolowo).

For example, from the 1979 elections till date, no party without direct lineage to the progressive roots of the late Sage has found favour with Lagosians. This ofcourse excepts the governorship election of 1991, when Lagosians deferred to a more responsible Sir Michael Otedola, in an act of political maturity and sophistication, to punish the rascally behaviour of so-called progressives.

Today, neither the AC nor the PDP can trace political ascendancy to the ideological roots of the late Sage. For the PDP it is quite obvious; descriptions such as Abacha politicians, junta politics, amala politics, garrison politics, are among the many that happily find their home within the PDP. From the Adedibus to the Akalas, from the Ubas to the Fayoses, the PDP is home to political henchmen dressed up in agbadas, babaringas and suits ever ready to unleash mayhem on the polity.

To add insult to injury, the party recently doubled with INEC to run parallel voter registration exercises from within the backyards of men like Adedibu and Akala. We wonder, how many more INEC registration machines were procured and distributed to other PDP henchmen across the nation? We will never know, just as the Adedibu and Akala cases are being swept under the carpet. Nigerians beware!

Lagosians have received their share of the PDP menace in the last 2 years as the party openly declared itself enemy of the people when it conspired with Aso Rock to starve Lagos of it’s Local council funds even after the Supreme Court ordered immediate release last year.

It is laughable therefore that the same PDP, with dramatis personae like Musiliu Obanikoro, can today aspire to rule Lagos even as their grand Daddy, President Obasanjo (the most unelectable person in the South West), recently declared that they would win Lagos at all cost. The question is, does this include attempting to rig the elections?

A word of warning to the PDP warmongers who want to win Lagos at all cost; the PDP will once again meet its waterloo in Lagos as in 2003. As always, the good people of Lagos are battle ready to cast their votes according to their hearts and defend it with their God given might.

As for the AC, any pretence to progressive credentials was flawed by their unashamed and despotic imposition of candidates during the party’s fake governorship primaries in various states of the country. Even the manner of it’s presidential primary (if one may call it so), in which delegates were asked to confirm only one candidate, betrayed the true basis for the existence of the AC.

Before long it became clear that the sole purpose behind the formation of the AC was to actualise the political ambition of one man to rule Nigeria. This realisation exposed the lack of any real ideological basis behind the formation of the AC.

It turned out that the Action Congress was and is mainly a party of PDP rejects whose common objective is to get their man into Aso Rock and thereby regain relevance, urged on almost single-handedly by a serving Governor desperate to keep the EFCC at bay after 29th May, 2007. If anyone is in doubt about the role played by the Lagos state Governor then let him or her consider the question: who is the most dominant personality in the AC today apart from Atiku? The answer is self evident, Lagos state Governor, Bola Ahmed Tinubu.

Surely, Nigerians deserve better than a PDP/AC strangulation of our precious political space. We deserve better than a PDP government that has presided over many unresolved political assassinations, paid lip-service to corruption through selective anti-corruption crusades and left us largely underdeveloped despite huge resources at it’s disposal and 8 good years in power.

We deserve better than a substitute PDP masquerading as an alternative political platform under the guise of the AC. An apology of a party that goes about brandishing brooms claiming to want to sweep away the PDP rot, when itself is part of that rot. Nigerians should rebuke this charade of the AC broom by telling the party that ‘devil cannot cast out devil’. This vain showmanship and empty political rhetoric cannot deceive the largely discerning Nigerian electorate anymore.

In Lagos, many initially bought into the make-believe plan of Governor Bola Tinubu to transform AD into the AC. The argument then was that there was need to form a broad political movement to rescue Nigerians from the stifling rule of the PDP. Little did unsuspecting party faithfuls know that this was a ruse to create a mega-platform whose sole objective will be to pursue the personal ambition of V.P. Atiku Abubakar and Governor Bola Tinubu.

Indeed, it turned out that Governor Tinubu (despite being a Yoruba man) had selfishly nursed the ambition to pick the Vice Presidency slot in an Atiku presidency and had courted and encouraged Atiku out of the PDP, even to the point of secretly fuelling the 3rd term crisis within the PDP.

Tinubu’s back up plan (in the event of failure to pick the VP ticket) was to become President of the Senate. Since the Alliance for Democracy (AD) was less likely to afford him the opportunity of realising his vaulting ambition, all had to be done to sacrifice the AD so that a bigger party like the AC (chiefly sponsored by him) could emerge.

As a major financier and promoter of the ACD and later the AC, Tinubu had created a mega-platform to not only prosecute his ambitious project but also to procure a new federal government without an eagle-eyed EFCC that will hold him to account for his 8 years tenure in Lagos.

This attempt by Governor Tinubu to protect his own interest regardless of the interest of Lagosians, informed his determination to impose Babatunde Fashola (at all cost) as the AC governorship candidate to the chagrin of 11 other aspirants. He unashamedly justified his choice by arguing that Fashola, as a lawyer, would be better placed to defend him against numerous litigations likely to trail his exit after May 29th 2007.

The question therefore is; what has Tinubu done to us in Lagos that he is now so afraid of leaving office without covering his tracks or indeed what has he done that he is now so afraid of an avalanche of litigation post May 29th 2007 ? In the words of a renowned novelist, I guess ‘the guilty are afraid’.

The end must now be in sight as Governor Tinubu in February unceremoniously bowed out of the senatorial race citing the lame excuse of wanting to give others a chance. This coincided with the appearance of his name in the controversial EFCC list of corrupt politicians not fit to hold public office. Dare I say, notwithstanding that list, Tinubu decided to bite the bullet and withdraw his candidacy so as not to be embarrassed by a looming INEC disqualification; an inevitable consequence on account of overwhelming evidence of corruption available to the authorities.

Once a progressive (or so made us believe), Tinubu has betrayed all the ideals he was once noted for championing; even up to the hypocritical point of evolving his own 3rd term project. Of course, this was an issue over which he pretended to vilify Obasanjo from the rooftop. I guess in this, both he and our President are birds of the same feather. Notice how they both hand picked and installed their successors – a PDP/AC methodology in re-inventing the 3 term project. Our lame duck Governor must now be told to stop throwing stones as he now dwells in a glasshouse.

Come the April governorship election, the likes of Tinubu will be reminded that Lagosians would only elect a Governor that will protect their overall interest rather than elect a lackey propped up to protect the interest of one man. Waiting in the wings is the man they call Destiny- Femi Pedro.

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2 Responses to “LAGOS 2007: Neither Koro nor Fashola”

  1. rasheed says:

    once again, a splendid write up. spot on! keep it up lekan!

  2. Dominic says:

    Good article, and right on the money. I am at a loss as to how anybody who hates the PDP can possibly root for the AC. Tinubu, and most PDP governors, love Atiku only because, they all expect to go scott-free under an Atiku presidency. Let’s hope Nigerians will vote sensibly and, just as importantly, let’s hope people will defend their votes this time.

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