The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) will never cease to amuse me. The party is trapped in a labyrinth of confusion and madness. It is difficult to work up any optimism about this party. The tale of this party is a typically dispiriting take on Nigeria political dysfunction. History is littered with all sorts of anarchy. The Cultural Revolution in Peoples Republic of China is definitely one. Another one is Julius Nyerere’s ill-faded Ujamaa program in Tanzania. PDP is inflicted with this same kind of madness. This party has failed in every imaginable way to lift Nigeria from the quagmire of economic deprivation. The latest exhibition of madness by this self-deluded party is the manner in which the shabbily organized some Nigerians to protest at the Chatham House last week.
Public funds were wasted on some Protesters who were not even aware of why they were protesting. It took a BENTV reporter to reveal the fact that those Protesters were a rented crowd. They were hurriedly put together to embarrass General Mohammadu Buhari in London. It is interesting to note the level of paranoid exhibited by the PDP lately. It all goes to show that the game is up for the so-called largest party in Africa. The cloud is gathering for the day of the jackal. There is no stopping Hurricane Buhari and the PDP knows it. So we are actually watching the last dance of desperation by a sinking party; a party doomed to speedy disappearance.
Buhari’s presentation at the Royal Institute for International Affairs (better known as Chatham House) was one of a kind and over the top. It was a masterpiece in every material particular. Obi Nwakanma, a Columnist with the Vanguard Newspaper, has this to say: “He (Buhari) carried himself with a lot of dignity and there is no inkling either of physical or mental malfunctioning. At 73, the man looks quite good; lean and agile, and seems to be in ruddy good health. His speech at Chatham House was also apt, eloquent, enlightened and well delivered, and ought to put finally to shame those who continue to Fani Kayak about his High School education.” The Will Editorial also attested to the fact that Buhari demonstrated a good command of facts and addressed concerns about both his age and the insinuations that he intends to impose Sharia Law on Nigeria. “Buhari struck me as a charming and well-informed and down to earth candidate, comfortable in the role of leader. While he made a statement reassuring people that his leadership and tackling of corruption would not be witch hunt, it remains unclear whether the leap of faith he is asking Nigerians to make is achievable.”
Nigeria has no cause to worry about this slow-talking, yet irrepressibly exuberant Buhari. Nigeria will overcome corruption partly exclusively on the strength of Buhari’s personality. His off duty persona is much like his on-duty one, the same mixture of great calm and boundless energy. His unique combination of intelligence, toughness and often startling humanity has always been a wonderful advertisement. While Buhari has a lot of accomplishments to his credit, the signature trait that he is known for is confidence. He will provide real leadership under pressure and has what it takes to tackle the corrupt political class who are among the most troglodytic and reactionary hacks.
The key issue that Buhari emphasized on In Chatham House is the fact that prosperity has not reached 99% of Nigerians. Wealth has not circulated outside the elites who constitute about 1% of the population. He expressly stated that his government will encourage free enterprise and that there will be government wholesome intervention to make sure that prosperity will spread abroad. The General said that in reforming the economy, “we will use savings that arise from blocking these leakages and proceeds recovered from corruption to fund APC social investments programs in education, health, and safety nets such as free school meals for children, emergency public works for unemployed youth and pension for the elderly.”
By Ikechukwu Orji
Orji is a Journalist and Media Consultant