Last week, a group of Igbo PDP members, supporters, beneficiaries, contractors and leaders gathered in Enugu to host the party’s presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar and his running mate, Peter Obi. They reveled and masked and at the end of the day, endorsed the duo to go for the presidency against incumbent President Muhammadu Buhari and his deputy, Prof. Yemi Osinbanjo of the APC and many other presidential candidates of other parties including some Igbo sons and daughters. The endorsement was to draw some furore and controversy because the PDP aficionados that met did not wrap their meeting and endorsement in its proper foil but purported that Igbo have met and endorsed the duo. But what was spectacular was the fact that not even one of the people that gathered belonged to or supports another party than PDP. They have been very visible foot soldiers of PDP in and after its disastrous 16 years in power. There is nothing wrong with PDP members coming together to promote or endorse their candidates. They have the inalienable rights to so do. They have every right to do everything to ensure their candidates win so meeting and endorsing them was neither illegal nor out of place.
But what was wrong and indecent was the dragging of all Igbo into that selfish project that will ultimately benefit the mandarins that concocted that show. This so-called endorsement tallies with the ill-bred, irrational, wrong-headed and fault-prone 2015 endorsement of PDP and Jonathan, which disastrous affected Igbo as to spurn a suicidal predilection that seized Igbo soon after the race discovered that it had inadvertently wrecked its political prospects in Nigeria as PDP and Jonathan crashed in 2015. Why they were not confident or proud to correctly state that Igbo PDP leaders and beneficiaries met and endorsed Atiku and Obi remains rooted at the fraudulence that has encased PDP relationship with Igbo. This fraud has today webbed Igbo in fatal complicity of the failings of the party, which earned it a deserved dismissal from power in 2015. The fraudulent intent of the PDP members and supporters to again lead Igbo into mother regrettable cul-de-sac is behind that con that purports to make Igbo perpetual beneficiaries of the huge liability of PDP, with not even a single coherent benefit to Igbo for their fanatical support for PDP in its entire chequered history.
That these Igbo PDP leaders evaded their real identity to make their noxious business with Atiku in Enugu look like an Igbo project shows that they are even ashamed to profess PDP to Nigerians. It is predictable that given a strange affinity Igbo have come to develop with PDP, the waning party may still maintain dominance in Igbo land in the next election. It is predictable that Atiku’s dour candidacy may have its brightest showing in Igbo land for reasons that are very hard to fathom. It can safely be guessed that he and PDP may record a slight win in the South East region, even when they cannot point to one durable achievement PDP did in the South East for a whole sixteen years except growing the corrupt estates of these that congregated in Enugu to dig another bottomless pit for Igbo. So, why won’t these Igbo PDP chieftains hurl their PDP banner in full mast and save themselves from the duplicitous con of dragging the entire Igbo into their personal hustles? Why won’t they do their usual thing without furthering the deep pit they dug for Igbo through similar action in 2015? Why won’t these money changers preserve the sacred name of Igbo and leave it out of their shady hustles? Why were they in a haste to advertise Igbo as an irredeemably tactless and doomed race that is ready to repeat a fatal blunder in quick succession?
As I said earlier, all the people that gathered in Enugu to revel with Atiku were either well-known PDP officials, members, contractors, beneficiaries or supporters. They have every right to do what they did to advance their political interest but have no right to use Igbo to promote what has turned out to be a repetitive scam. The same people that gathered in Enugu have been beneficiaries of the corrupt PDP largesse for the 16 sordid years it was in power. They are the same people who have been so loud in promoting PDP especially during the last regime when they felt their putrid feathers were best nested. They were the same people that mounted the ill-fated total Igbo support for the erstwhile Jonathan/PDP regime during the 2014 election, which greatly deprecated Igbo political standing in Nigeria today. The people that gathered in Enugu were the same Igbo that have superintended 16 years of selfish aggrandizement under PDP where they grew richer while nothing, absolutely nothing, was done for the generality of the Igbo people by the PDP. They were the same people that yoked Igbo with a waning PDP that for a whole 16 years, was content with demolishing the Igbo leg of the Nigerian tripod and made Igbo perpetual hewers of wood and fetchers of water. They were the same people that supervised the complete defenestration of infrastructures in Igboland even when they were growing fat from the common till. They were the same people that vociferously campaigned for PDP for delivering a cartoon impression of the Second Niger Bridge to Igbo in 16 years. They were the same people that crooned for PDP even when all Igbo roads went extinct in PDP’s 16 years.
The people that gathered for Atiku in Enugu were the same Igbo that urged us not to look elsewhere but pack all our eggs in their fragile PDP basket only for it to crash irredeemably in 2015. They were the same people that vowed to sink and swim with PDP, who decreed death for those that refused to agree to their naïve self-centeredness, sponsored and promoted internecine hate against those that refused to support PDP in 2015. They were the same people that refused to even meet and listen to candidate Muhammadu Buhari in 2015, who incited the impressionable and cheeky rabble against him and the APC and engaged in savage, brutish and nasty efforts to diminish them in Igboland and grow candidate Goodluck Jonathan and his PDP. They were the same people that used religion and tongue to cannibalize others and seek to divide the country just because Buhari defeated their choice candidate and party in 2015.
The same people that gathered for Atiku in Enugu were the same people who, on realizing that they have led Igbo into the worst political blunder in their history in 2015, began sponsoring and promoting a dangerous gospel of hate, incitement, bigotry and anger in Igboland against Buhari, his government and his party, APC and other Nigerians who did not take their suicidal route. The same people were the people that dug up and sponsored a very dangerous but doomed secessionist project that pitted Igbo against all other people, threatened the peace and well-being of Nigeria and prodded Nigerian down the brinks of war before the situation was arrested through the strong measures of the present government. These were the people who cared less in prodding the Igbo, who are Nigeria’s most mobile race, against their host communities by spreading lies, fake news, misinformation and all manners of slanderous documents just to set Nigeria on fire. They did these and many others to get back at Buhari for their own unforced blunders and purblind political understanding in 2015. They did these to express their anger at the defeat of PDP and Jonathan and hoped that by these, PDP, whose fading remnants they happily baby-sit will be nursed back to life.
In their meeting with Atiku as in their previous individual positions before their meeting, they said they were supporting Atiku for choosing an Igbo for a Vice Presidential ticket. You can’t believe that this cheeky lie is coming from the same people who just a few weeks ago thundered that they don’t need the presidency but a bogus restructuring they neither understand nor supported until PDP was shoved out of power. Come to think of it, several eminent Igbo have contested for Vice Presidency before and these include; the late Dr. Chuba Okadigbo and Chief Edwin Ume-Ezeoke who differently contested as Vice Presidential candidates to now President Buhari but were not voted by Igbo. The late Igbo leader, late Chief Emeka Odumegwu Ojukwu severally contested for the Presidency but these same Igbo ensured he was defeated even in his Nnewi home town! Today, as I stated earlier, many Igbo sons and daughters are contesting for the presidency but these PDP leaders find understandable value for what many see as a worthless Vice Presidential ticket that is aimed at damaging the real Igbo opportunity to stake a credible claim for the presidency in 2023.
So, in deciding to meet and endorse Atiku and Obi, they should ensure they don’t seek to inter Igbo further than the deep labyrinth they dug for the race in 2015. For a group that is adept at being deep in a hole and still digging, I know that the rump of PDP apologists that now domicile their waning arts of deception in Igboland do not care if the entire house is pulled down on everybody so long as they satisfy their nebulous interests and their deadly ego. Let them support Atiku, let them support PDP but they should leave Igbo out of their hustle. Igbo was badly damaged by such similar dense, hare-brained and thoughtless political move as they are making today in 2015. We are struggling to heal from the wound these people inflicted collectively on us. We are trying to mend the irreparable damage their rudderless and blind prospecting levied on Igbo in 2015. Igbo are trying to reverse from the path to political perdition which these mandarins took u to in 2015. They don’t need such worsening as the purported Igbo endorsement of a surely ill-fated Atiku/Obi ticket will leverage on them in 2019.
Peter Claver Oparah
E-mail: [email protected]