May Yar’adua die of his illness…. By Nafata Bamaguje
“May Yar'Adua die of his illness and never return to the presidency…Amen!!” Many will consider this prayer callous, insensitive and in bad taste, but let's be sincere Yar Adua's death would be the best way out of the political logjam created by his stubborn refusal to hand over to the VP when he is incapacitated by illness or travels out.
In the unlikely event the ailing president recovers and resumes his rudderless ineffectual leadership, there's no guarantee that in another few weeks or months he won't be back in a Saudi hospital leaving the nation again in limbo. He's already been in and out of foreign hospitals several times in his short unimpressive presidency, but never properly handed over during these trips.
Since the sickly president wouldn't resign, and repeatedly refuses to hand over to VP Jonathan each time he shamelessly jets off to a Saudi hospital - a nation we supply specialists doctors – it would be much better for him to quietly pass away and spare our troubled nation further hassles.
Even if we buy the excuse that UMYA was in a coma at the time he was ambulanced out of the country, and therefore was in no position to send a letter to the National Assembly as demanded by the constitution; why has he not done the right thing since he regained consciousness? After all he reportedly signed the budget on his deathbed. And why hasn't he been impeached for these repeated flagrant constitutional breaches?
The feckless self-serving Federal Executive Council which is supposed to declare our president incapacitated, is mostly composed of Yar Adua's appointees who are selfishly more interested in maintaining their plum ministerial jobs rather than do the right thing for the nation. In the absence of firm presidential authority, this cabal of traitors & leeches are having a field day.
Our fragile polity has been needlessly plunged into a crisis that has strained already tense ethno-regional relations with insinuations that the North wants to hold onto power at all costs, thus denying presidential power to the oil rich Niger Delta and playing into the hands of secessionists in the area.
MEND even issued an ultimatum for swearing-in Jonathan, and mounted attacks to protest the stalled amnesty program that was overseen by our ill absentee president. So far VP Jonathan has been able to restrain his rabble rousing kinsmen in the creeks from resuming full hostilities and destroying the uneasy amnesty peace, one of UMYA's few achievements.
UMYA's opprobrious misconduct has further rubbished our already tarnished image in the committee of nations, particularly with his hippopotamus-faced Attorney-General recklessly running off his filthy mouth that Naija can be governed from anywhere. Little wonder Obama has no respect for our underachieving quasi-nation and easily blacklisted us as terrorists even though our religious violence prone country is not a hotbed of international terrorism.
Britain and Egypt have much worse terrorist records but are not so blacklisted. As leader of the largest Black nation, a functional Yar'Adua could have warmed up to America's first “black” (Taqiyya Muslim) president with recent African roots, pulled a few strings and prevented our blacklisting.
With the uncertainty about VP Jonathan's exercise of presidential powers, he couldn't have pulled it off. Jonathan can't even control Yar Adua's ministers - one of whom publicly defied him and travelled out of the country - talk less of commanding the international respect required to get us off the blacklist.
For a president who prides his maladministration on the “rule of law”, Yar Adua's blatant refusal to comply with the law as enshrined in our constitution by temporarily handing over when incapacitated or travelling out, is baffling.There are two possible disturbing explanations for the Katsina mallam's paranoid insistence on holding on to power even on his deathbed where he can't exercise the power. He is either too power hungry to temporarily let go even for a few weeks; and/or doesn't trust his deputy.
That Yar Adua could be rabidly power hungry does not jell with the popular canard of him as a reluctant presidential aspirant who was forcibly drafted by OBJ. But then the supposedly reluctant president not only firmly held on to power even after admitting his election was flawed, but also fought tooth & nail to keep his stolen mandate all the way to the Supreme Court. He even bribed the Appeal Court chairman with Supreme Court appointment.
If OBJ's recent revelations at the 7th Annual Trust dialogue are anything to go by, our “reluctant” president committed perjury in his reluctant ambition to become President by presenting a false medical report giving him a clean bill of health. Not being a lawyer I'm not big on legal matters, but one smells an impeachable offense in Yar Adua's perjury to become President.
Nigeria's Medical & Dental Council should investigate the false medical report that gave UMYA clean bill of health to contest the presidency, and disciplinary action should be taken against the fraudulent doctors. If the medical report was from a foreign hospital, then the impropriety of our security agencies depending on foreigners to vet the health of our would-be leader also needs to be investigated.
UMYA's obvious mistrust of his deputy indicates an unwelcome subliminal throwback to the OBJ-Atiku feud in the preceding maladministration. His platitudinous pretenses of loyalty notwithstanding, the VP must be pissed off by the repeated contemptuous slight and maltreatment from his boss. There is little doubt therefore that like this writer and possibly millions other Nigerians, Jonathan and his hangers-on must also be wishing UMYA dead.
Why must our so-called leaders continue to undermine our democracy and hobble our nation by being so petty-minded as to allow their personal squabbles subvert national interest? And I'm not just referring to President/VP feuds but also governors and their deputies. Short-sighted self-serving personal squabbles trumping national interest was also reportedly behind the annulment of the freest and fairest election this country has ever known – June 12, 1993.
Our leaders should learn from the Tony Blair / Gordon Brown dispute, which was never at the expense of British national interest. If Tony Blair were a Nigerian politician he would have bribed party delegates, rigged elections, witch-hunted Brown and his supporters, even deploying security agents & thugs against them to ensure Gordon Brown never becomes Prime Minister.
Note how the former Bauchi deputy governor was recently ousted on trumped up charges because he refused to join his boss in decamping to the Predatory Demonic Plunderers (PDP). Interestingly the Bauchi governor himself was initially railroaded out of PDP by similar underhand tactics.
Given this immaturity, small-mindedness and unscrupulous nature of Nigerian politicians who seem incapable of putting the nation's interest above theirs, I've lost all hope of profound positive change through the ballot box. Let's not kid ourselves, Nigeria isn't a democracy, otherwise our National Assembly and Federal Executive Council would have risen to their constitutional responsibility and gotten rid of the absconded bedridden president who brazenly flouts our constitution and treats the nation with such contempt.