BUHARI, JONATHAN AND BOKO HARAM
The problematic 2011 general elections have come and gone. The victors are still dancing unrestrainedly while losers are still licking sore wounds. Though that election is better than the three previous ones, there were glaring irregularities. It is observable that even though Goodluck Jonathan won the elections it is however not without backdoor vote inflation in certain states to favour PDP and deflation in certain states to disfavor CPC. The northern elites helped to betray their own to the highest bidder. This perhaps explains why Buhari is yet to accept the results of the presidential election. The official polls results shows PDP- 21million plus votes and CPC- 12million plus votes. If not for votes manipulations maybe we would have had PDP -19million plus and CPC- 14 million plus. This is a 5 million votes difference.
A man that could garner 12 million (official) or 14 million (unofficial) votes representing 36% official and 42% unofficial in an election where all the PDP machinery was unleashed including enormous funds, traditional institutions, governors, ministers, ex-presidents , INEC and forces of intimidation from the police, soldiers and other agents of coercion is certainly a force to reckon with in Nigeria.
The nation is searching for an end to the senseless incursions into national security by a sect with roots in the core north and with obvious appeal in the same north. All manners of high profile personality who deluded themselves that they still have credibility have been contracted to find a solution to the menace of the Boko Haram sect and their efforts have failed woefully perhaps because the sect sees them as part of the cabal that used western education to impoverish and enslave them. Equally , committees of people who have neither followership nor respect among the masses of the north have been contracted to engage, brainstorm with and mediate with the sect which has appreciable mass appeal among the illiterates and few elites in the core north. Their efforts are all colossal failure. You cannot bring a professor of literature from Los Angeles to kickstart reform of motor park touts in Oshodi, Lagos. The poetism of the grammar will overshadow the substance of the reforms and the exercise will fail.
Buhari is the most popular politician in the north. Had the 2003 and 2007 presidential elections been held according to minimum acceptable standards , Buhari would since have handed over to another President of Nigeria. You cannot claim to be searching for peace and security and ignore such a personality. Though there is pending electoral dispute in the courts, President Goodluck cannot afford to see Buhari as an enemy even if the ruling party thinks otherwise. President Goodluck for now is the Father of the Nation and will pay to reach out to anybody whose input can bring the much needed stability. If this government fails it is Goodluck Jonathan regime that history will record as failure, all these hangers on and sycophants will scamper to their respective villages to take cover.
We would recall that the public denounciation of any act of murder of Christians and burning of churches by Buhari in the aftermath of the contentious elections saved what would have been bloodshed of unimaginable proportions. That the death toll was officially put at 524 is a result of his caution on his followers . The scenario probably would have been worse with attendant reprisals from other parts of the country.
It is not a sign of weakness if President Goodluck initiates serious dialogue, consultations and fence mending with Buhari with the intention of blocking all socio-political loopholes and vacuums enemies of democracy could use to advertise support for acts of destabilization to gullible and illiterate public in the north. A word of advice, caution or reason from the General can bring common sense to prevail in a situation that has overawed and confounded the Nigerian security forces.
Enough of grandstanding while the nation is boiling. If this type of attack which took place during Sallah festivities in Yobe leaving over a hundred dead ( 65 according to official police reports) occurs ten times more across the nation then certainly the nation will be on the way to Golgotha. Let all these victory dance over polls results stop forthwith and be replaced by a sober attempt to heal , reconcile and redress all political grievances across the polity including attendant load balancing.
Financial/ IT consultant writes from Abuja