1 OF 109 SENATORS: IS SARAKI A THREAT TO JONATHAN?
The dawn of Jonathan's administration commenced with shocks on the Nigerian economy and security- and interestingly, the shock accompanied with serious dramata in the political system continued.
This regressed the falling Peoples Democratic Party's integrity at the national and state levels, to the point that it became apparent that Nigerians are tired of the PDP, therefore, need a change which will usher in another political party with a different and progressive ideology that will rescue Nigerians from the hands of the Peoples Democratic Party, which has weaken Nigeria's moral, economic, and social values.
Hence, there was a spark in the party, an intra-party movement for change rose within the PDP under the umbrella of the new-PDP.
This new PDP caucus believed that it was possible to reform the party in spite of its rough history and daunting challenges, they believed Nigeria needs quality leadership that will create result from the PDP if the party wishes to retain power in 2015- during their agitation period which spanned for some months, they made a list of major reforms that needed to made, but unfortunately, the leadership of the party at this time, led by Barmanga Tukur was resilient to change, and the President, Mr.
Jonathan couldn't accommodate the proposal for thorough change in the party structure and ideology by the n-PDP caucus, thus, the caucus broke out and defected to All Progressive Congress, a merger party consisting of major opposition parties in Nigeria, whose leadership has been characterized with progress, development, transparency, equity and masses friendly laws.
The n-PDP caucus that ended up in APC consists of five serving governors, members of house of representatives and serving senators of the Federal Republic of Nigeria including the former Kwara state governor, who was also chairman of governors' forum for 8 years at stretch, currently the chairman senate committee on environment, Senator Bukola Saraki.
No doubt, it is apparent that Senator Bukola Saraki, being a giant figure, having served as governor for two terms, and marched to the senate for the first time and became the chairman of senate on environment, played a major role in addressing internal problems the PDP has before defecting to APC.
However, among all the defectors, there have been some gestures from the Federal Government and its PDP caucus to Senator Bukola Saraki, his political structure and the entire Kwara community, which if well assessed, show that Bukola Saraki measures a heavy weight in the nation's current political dispensation, being the political leader of Kwara state and also a youth friendly senator in Nigeria, who has balanced governance by following trends for developmental purpose among Nigerian youths.
Is Saraki a threat to Jonathan? Lets assess! Shortly after Senator Saraki defected to APC, interestingly, the Kwara state political structure (local government chairmen and councilors, members of state house) also defected, a shocking move that relegated the PDP to the level of a minority party in Kwara state overnight, currently, it is not difficult to conclude that PDP in Kwara state is at the same level with minority parties such as DPM, Labour Party e.
in spite of its Federal might, just as the cold hands of death snatches the rich poor, strong, weak, old and young without prior awareness, the almighty PDP in Kwara state became dead structurally, with scanty members, who knows what 2015 will say? The way PDP lost its grip on Kwara, Kano, Rivers, Sokoto, Ekiti, Osun among others, it may lose its grip at national level come 2015, maybe? Meanwhile, various dramata have followed Saraki's defection to APC.
As earlier said, from recent gestures since defection, it is not difficult to assume Jonathan is politically worried about Saraki's defection, one of one hundred and nine senators.
Beginning with withdrawal of Saraki and Governor Rotimi Ameachi's security aides, a move that has been described as unconstitutional by legal experts- and has been interpreted as a move to punish the defectors; but we must note that, if Saraki is not politically significant, his defection will not matter to Jonathan, and hence will not even strive to weaken him politically.
Followed by emotional rejection of defectors' letter by Senator David Mark on the senate floor, with the point that, since the matter is in the court, it was unnecessary to read the letters- why is defection this glorified and escalated into a big and national matter trending for many months if the defectors didn't matter? Jonathan and his allies have said continually that the defectors will not stop PDP's victory, then why are they so much after declaring their seats vacant if they are insignificant? Well, it didn't end there.
Jonathan was at the rising peak, when he sacked Bolaji Abdulahi, the most successful sport minister in the last 15-years- during Bolaji's tenure as sport minister, Nigeria won the U-17 world cup among other Olympic medals won.
No record of any embezzlement, mismanagement, or unpaid entitlement at the sport council during his tenure.
No doubt, Bolaji who was sacked almost immediately after the President visited Kwara, was sacked because of his political loyalty to Senator Bukola Saraki.
Jonathan weighed political affiliation over competence, he overlooked Bolaji's competence as evident in his records, and fired him because of political affiliation with Senator Bukola Saraki- then can we still say Saraki is not politically significant? As a method is tried, and it fails in the struggle to relegate Bukola Saraki politically, another is launched by the PDP's national body, but the FG camouflages as if all is well.
Threatening with EFCC/Police investigation is one of the most recent moves on Bukola Saraki.
If we have not forgotten, was a statement not issued in 2013 stating that Saraki has been well investigated, and nothing was found against him? However, now that Saraki is on the opposite road, is the previous statement invalid? Nigeria needs to rise above character assassination, political attacks on individuals because they share a different political ideology that threatens our goals.
If the desire is to reform Nigeria, then relating with opposition should not be a political combat.
Saraki has demonstrated the true definition of a statesman beyond party difference, he visited and played advisory roles to oppositions while he was in PDP- of course, he visited Ekiti state over the death of her deputy governor, sat with opposition and discussed national issues on progressive ground.
PDP's grip on Kwara is lost, that's apparent! Even with the presidential visit on a Monday morning, accompanied by the Vice President, Senate President, SFG, PDP National Chairman among others, barely 48 hours when scores of children were killed in a severe attack in the north and many girls were raped and kidnapped; the impact of the presidential visit did not go beyond the hour the rally ended.
Unfortunately for the party, its scanty members are dominated by nocturnal politicians, whose integrities in Kwara rise and end within their families.
The Jonathan administration should rise above persons and address institutional issues, the political significance of Saraki in Kwara is not a recent development, and it reaches the grassroot.
It is good to dream, but it is also good to know that not all dreams come true, in a statement by Jonathan that 'PDP will reclaim Kwara and all opposition states', wow! That is a good dream for PDP, but unfortunately, it cannot be achieved.
Nigerians are not too blind to see the difference between PDP ruled states and APC ruled states, and the people are sufficiently ready to secure their futures by throwing continuous support for progressives.
On political calculations, obvious to all, it is practically impossible for the crisis-ridden PDP, whose leadership has been characterized with gross mismanagement of public funds, misuse of power, extravagant spending of public funds, peaking unemployment, rising insecurity which has secured Nigeria the 7th position on Global Terrorism Index list e.
The recent awakening is for change, and the heavy breeze is blowing every that it cannot be resisted; those who fail to change will only be blown away by the heavy breeze.
Written By Lawrence Okerinsola