The Mistake Would-Be Jonathan Presidential Handlers Should Never Make


By Edwin Uhara
In the coming weeks, active political activities for next year General

Elections will kick start fully and officially! It will be a time to

expect the unexpected. A time for massive defections from one party to

another in furtherance of one political interest. A time for

accusations and counter accusations. A time to open the dossiers of

politicians for public scrutiny. A time for truthful or deceptive

political promises among others. Just like we say in journalism

profession; €œIf it can bleed, then it can lead€. The coming weeks will

be time when my colleagues in the media who are still standing idly,

watching and studying the nation political activities will be divided

along party lines promoting, attacking and defending the interest of one

candidate or the other depending on the terms, it will be the time when my

articles will no longer appear in certain media organizations.

However, President Good luck Ebele Jonathan should note that, as a top

candidate for the forth coming Presidential Election, most aspirants would

turn him to be their punching bag with the sole intention of discrediting

him while enhancing their own chances for the polls. Hence, he should

never put up €œA too big to fail attitude€ throughout the

electioneering campaigns! He should not leave anything to chance because

an unconsidered variable in an election of this magnitude may turn out to

be the major issue; especially now that the major battle is going to be

between the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and the All Progressives

Congress (APC).
Therefore, the would-be Jonathan official presidential handlers

should do away with some of the attitudes similar organization put up

during the 2011 presidential campaigns. They must put Jonathan

interest at the forefront and be open to good ideas and recognize

individual and collective efforts that will ensure that Jonathan is

returned to office next year, instead of wrongly thinking or assuming

that anybody coming around is coming to dislodge them from their vantage

position. The truth is that, if they refuse to show altruistic commitment

and supports to the President re-election bid and allows selfish

interest and the spoils of the moment to deny him re-election, Jonathan

as a person has nothing to lose! Rather, when the worse comes to worst,

Jonathan would join the league of African Statesmen. In this regards, it

is them that will bear the brunt of their mistakes than President

Jonathan himself! Also, it is the Nigerian people, the

intellectual and business community that will be most affected, and as a

result this, they would be bugged down by the miasma of policy

instability. I say this because, I personally do not believe in frequent

change of government and policies.
Besides, President Jonathan should not maintain complacency in

extra-ordinary times because, that was the strategy that cost former

French President, Nicolas Sarkozy his re-election bid in 2012. It will be

recalled that when the opposition party led by Francois Hollande was

roaring like lion and leading in various opinion polls, Nicolas Sarkozy

was displaying nonchalant attitude and an image of a bound to win

candidate. So, before he could realize what was happening, the

opposition party; the Socialist Party which had been in disarray after the

fall of its predicted Presidential candidate and former Managing Director

of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) Dominique Strauss-Khan, had

already gained much grounds.
Subsequently, when they went in to the election proper, Francois Hollande

defeated Mr. Sarkozy. Im however not saying this will happen to

President Jonathan, but it a call on him to seat up and march or

surpass the opposition in every front till the Independent National

Electoral Commission (INEC) declares him winner of the February 14, 2015

Presidential Elections! Though, some of us will move back to trenches to

ensure his absolute victory so as to avoid any form of run-off next year!

Hence, I decided to cite the experience of Nicolas Sarkozy and his party,

the Union for Popular Movement (UPM) so that Jonathan official

Presidential handlers will learn nostalgic lessons from the misadventure.

This is because, those managing any presidential candidate must be open to

new ideas at all times; especially game-changing ones. These are ideas

that can leapfrog a backward candidate to the leading position in the

race. They should note that, Nigeria is changing and as a result, ideas

that worked in previous elections may not work in the coming election or

may simply require little review and improvement so as to march the

unfolding political realities in the days ahead!
Secondly, presidential handlers should always consider the interest of

their candidate first before any other considerations! They should be

focused, dedicated and always be loyal to their candidate. They should

never be two-faced Janus or found running with the here and hunting with

the hound or backstabbing their candidate and cutting deals with his

opponents. Some of the things I highlight here were some of the egregious

political mistakes I personally observed while working with the

Jonathan/Sambo Presidential campaign train during the 2011 elections.

Finally, from every political calculations and permutations devoid of

Propaganda, President Jonathan is still on the lead even as he needs more

works to be done in the area of grassroots mobilization and sensitization.

Hence, lets us continue to be proactive while waiting for the right time

to officially give him the green light to continue in office through our

Comrade Edwin Uhara is a Political Strategist, an Activist, Media

Consultant and Public Affairs Commentator. Reach him on 07065862479 or

[email protected]
He writes from Abuja.
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