Between Pastor Buhari, And Fisherman Jonathan...

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It is only in the dream that a rat will fall in love with a cat.

Nigeria is a great country, despite all our short and long comings. A nation of great people, in all ramifications, it is a collection and conglomeration of the good, bad and extremely ugly. Trust me; it has extremely wonderful persons, great citizens and somewhat indescribable leaders.

The nation's production line is non-stop in terms of human resources, wonderful writers, doctors that can hold their own anywhere, lawyers that are law personified, computer whiz kids and witches, fathers of the internet and children of yahoo-yahoo, in all fields of human endeavour we compete we do very well.

What then is the problem, some call it the Nigerian myth, others say its 'our way' to others it's a problem deeply rooted in bad leadership. Some say and correctly that we are a victims of our own self-destruct nature. After all these leaders do not fall from the sky, they are Nigerians too, products of the system one must admit. So what then is the problem?

We are a nation of amazing contradiction. We produce a Maitama Sule and compliment him with a Sani Abacha, we get Wole Soyinka and tag him with an Alao Akala, for every one genius we are blessed with a collection of rascals... (Apologies to Jonathan).

We all know the problem or at least have a version of what the problem is, many a reports and submissions lie in archives of possible solutions but we are just content being where we are.

Irrespective of how one feels, we are trail-blazers, record breakers. If we are not the happiest, we are the most religious and yet we engage in some of the most sadistic religious conflicts, sociologists and psychologists are still short of the most appropriate classification of human species that we fit into.

We are blessed with leadership that build bridges where there are no rivers. Give motorcycles to underage boys and label them as miscreants.

In the above paragraphs I have deliberately strayed from what was supposedly my topic for discuss on purpose but for the discerning mind I have only highlighted the discrepancies we find ourselves as a nation as highlighted by the title of this discuss.

Some five years ago I was priviledged to interview General Muhammed Buhari, then he was a 'fundamentalist' for what now I really could not tell, the interaction was sequel to my backpage comment in Leadership Newspapers, I titled it 'the president Nigeria cannot have'.

Five years on, he has become a pastor, now we all know his driver is a Christian, his cook knows the pope, and his current wife is ECWA, COCIN, or OFN, whichever? This is besides his newly found love with Idiaghbon's lost son, Tunde Bakare. However the fact remains that some of the reasons I stated then, why he could not be president are still relevant today.

The pair Buhari/Bakare make the new BB, a force sweeping many parts, take it or leave it, on a good day...with emphasis on the term 'good day', without the Ribadus, Shekeraus, Utomis, Momodus it would be like imagining that Arsenal would beat Barcelona at the Nou Camp by 4-0 if it were a straight call between Buhari and Jonathan.

Buhari is old, Buhari is strict, how strict. He is an Islamic fundamentalist, of the Shiite order or simply Al-Qaeda. Ordinarily in a failed coup, (without all that military history of how he became head of state), he committed treason and should have been hanged.

I do not know whether it's me, but the truth is that he is not erudite, scholarly or possess the Obama feel. But for one, I like his scary old school principal look that tells you "dare come to school late". Are these answers, certainly not...

But beyond Buhari, for those hailing he the answer?

No matter the provocation, no president should use uncouth language, calling governors rascals is not right; however how many of those governors are really not rascally in one of their behaviours or the other. Yet that does not give you right to address them as such.

Not that I sincerely care about what they call themselves, but then for the opposition to refer to a sitting president as a drunken sailor fisherman, makes ridicule of the system, and we can all thank God that it is a democracy, imagine calling Abacha, an apple eating frolicking president during his lifetime. A visit from Rogers would have put some senses into the commentator.

The above highlights the disdain that many have of the Jonathan presidency; it's not so much about Jonathan but the PDP as a political group that is overwhelmed by itself. I mean whichever way; with an Obasanjo by one's side you can call anyone an idiot. Besides for our elite, it's a case of bastards and bigger bastards.

Besides all the theories we know on Goodluck, apart from facebook, and how many children he has and does not have, and if Patience is older and her own sweet way of speaking English, who is this Jonathan?

What does these amiable fisherman bring, for once can we look beyond the incumbency and the money to throw around, what really has Jonathan done to impact on lives, how did Buhari impact on lives in his short reign?

In all the failed Buhari attempts, what is the guiding philosophy, what did Jonathan do in Bayelsa?

Are Nigerians asking the real questions, are we content the way Nigeria is presently structured, do we continue with the senseless killings up country, and the thuggery, robbery, arson, down south? All the stereotyping and labelling does it suit us, rascal South Westerners, drunken Ijaw fishermen, murderous Hausa men, kidnapping Ibo men and many more?

Are we permanently confined to men that call god or the ones God calls, why should we still in 2011 be required to pray and fast while others share the money and break the fast for us? Why is governance still not a planned effort but one that is cemented to when it's good we take and when it's bad we simply nod?

Which of these men that want our mandate in April has a spreadsheet of how, when, where, which...they all do not have a timeline on deliverables. Ribadu talks of a million houses like it's a Dangote bag of rice. Jonathan talks power, forgetting how that sector has become a cash cow.

The Momodus and Utomis just make up the number, if its change we should believe in and it's all about selfless service what stopped the all mega alliance at least for now?

The old man that has not won councillorship in Yobe says it must be a Northern, why don't you support Buhari, or Ribadu, or Shekarau. Maybe these are not convenient Northerners.

Of the men vying for the abused seat of Nigerian presidency why are we again faced with the burden of picking from a basket that has question marks written all over? Again it is business as usual; the preferable is not available, so the available has become preferred.

Buhari is strict but every crook and harry is queuing behind CPC, Jonathan is finding his feet and our money is just disappearing. Despite my largely pessimistic view, I believe that change is possible, how; I really do not seem to know these days, when...I am beginning to fear, not in our lifetime.

I therefore end this discuss challenging, the Pastor and the fisherman and other allied co-travellers to go on national television in words that the market woman, the economist, professor, and spare parts dealer can understand and tell us what they want to and can do for these slumbering giant. Let us all say enough of empty promises and film-tricking of gullible citizenry.

Between Buhari, and Jonathan they are still far away from the issues and substances of what Nigerians in normal circumstances deserve as a reward to sustained democratic practice. Seems we are content living the dream than facing reality.

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Articles by Prince Charles Dickson