First, let me welcome my cherished readers back to SOLILOQUY- a cerebrally introspective discourse that began its life in defunct NewFrontier Magazine in 1988; got its rebirth in National Mirror in 2010 and now berthing for good at the harbour of Nigerian Pilot, The Newspaper With Conscience.
Talking of Nigeria’s Magical Year, I believe those who had allegedly predicted the demise of ‘Lord Lugard’s Contraption’ or ‘Mistake of 1914’ this year, would have to junk in their ‘Satanic Verses’ about Nigeria securely at the very bottom of waste-basket of history. But, the other good side of it that I believe should be thrown up, decorated and cast in gold for human history is the momentous and extraordinary role played by President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan- ‘The Dark Horse’ predicted by late sage, Chief Jeremiah Obafemi Awolowo and ‘Child of Independence’ foretold by late humble nation-builder, President Umaru Yar’Adua, to ‘fix’ Nigeria for good.
Before dwelling on the issue of fixing Nigeria, let me digress a little. By their latest expostulations it is pretty sure that the likes of Babangida Aliyu, out-going governor of Niger State and his Kano State counterpart, Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso, probably have an opaque view of the real issues involved in the outcome of the 2015 presidential election vis-a-vis the historic role played by ‘The Child of Independence’ in fixing Nigeria for her destined greatness.
I am convinced, like other millions of well-meaning Nigerians that common sense or spirit of nationalism, demands that at this crucial time of our national life, we should all pay premium attention to making the incoming leadership work and live up to the spirit and letter of the ‘CHANGE’ it has so much proselytized and romanticised before and during last high-octane electioneering campaigns.
Particularly, it is quite befuddling that Gov. Babangida Aliyu could so prematurely engage in his characteristic chatterbox of drawing national attention to a dead issue of the Jonathan second term presidency. I say ‘a dead issue’ because the whole world knows that the orchestrated conspiracy to get Jonathan out of power-at all costs, which was first test-run with the failed attempt to throw up Aminu Tambuwal for national acceptance early last year, is all about the return of power to the region of those ‘Born to Rule’ Nigeria from Sahel through Savannah to the ultra-polluted and chemically-impoverished mangroves shoring Atlantic Ocean where the inhabitants live with unbridled man-made degradation and where nonetheless, God has ingeniously deposited the nation’s source of fiscal existence.
Back to the main focus of this piece which is why I hold that President Jonathan is ‘The Child of Independences’ that fixed Nigeria for good for generation yet unborn: Before General Muhammadu Buhari (A Nigerian leader I have high regards for) emerged as democratically elected Nigerian president, I have held on several occasions the view that Nigeria would know no peace until she assuaged the pervading noxious sense of political bereavement by the leadership (of all divides) and followership of the Core North following Dr. Jonathan’s emergence after the demise of President Yar’Adua-Of course, I have been proven right.
As a discerning mind, I have argued that two lobes of what to expect from the outcome of last presidential election are: A Jonathan Win-Pandemonium; A Buhari Win- Peace. Please, I don’t want to be misquoted as inferring that Jonathan is a man of peace, while Buhari is a man of war-NO; this piece is not to eulogise or vilify anyone. But, if the truth must be told, should the energy that went into the wild jubilation and celebration of the victory of His Excellency, President-Elect Muhammadu Buhari, especially in the North (Abuja inclusive), been channeled negatively, the prediction of the foreign ‘Nostradamuses’ about our dear country would have been history by now and the ‘New Nigeria’ (if any) would have probably been actualised in line with Major Gideon Orkar’s dream of April 22, 1991. Undoubtedly, this is the bottom line: But a million thanks to ‘Child of Independence’ who did not revel in parochialism and power-drunkenness to bring Nigeria into balkanization.
At a private dinner with President Goodluck Jonathan last year, I told him that one of the reasons I admire him and his leadership style was that I could see him actualize what late President Umaru Yar’Adua expressed at his inaugural speech in 2011 that the ‘children of independence’ are the ones that will fix Nigeria.
Even though he appreciated my assertion on this occasion, I am not sure he did fathom my coded reasons for it and here are two of the reasons: First and just as he told me at this rare opportunity to have a presidential dinner with him, HE’S A TEACHER TO THE VERY CORE-I believe there can’t be any fertile argument by anyone anywhere in the world about the axiomatic fact that teachers are number one nation-builders. And, if truth will not be made to stand on its forehead and the focal issue of real national development will be divest of politics or sentiment, religion, ethnicity or North-South dichotomy, Jonathan is the best Nigerian leader till date in terms of genuine infrastructural development of our country and nationalistic fervour for actualisation of the Nigerian Project envisioned by our founding fathers.
The second plank of my belief and appreciation that President Jonathan is the predicted ‘Child of Independence’ to fix Nigeria is his unpretentious desire to put Nigeria on the world map of genuine democratic culture. It is no surprise therefore, that this fact is roundly conceded to him, even by his worst critics.
If these two broad areas of our national reality enjoy the same passion and zeal by the in-coming Nigerian leadership, I make bold to say THE LABOUR OF OUR HERO PAST SHALL NOT BE IN VAIN.
(to be cont’d)