Thursday, September 30, 2010
Tuesday, September 21, 2010
One name that the rumour mill churned out on Sunday was that of Aliyu Gusau, who resigned his position as head of Nigerian Intelligence Agency on the Monday. Though he has not declared formally as yet, rumours have it, this powerful yet publicity shy man may either run or support a single Northern candidate that may yet emerge from the pack. Gusau alongside Atiku and IBB all went through the Primaries in the last election but failed to get the ticket or election.
Time will tell as to how the PDP primaries fair. There are games afoot yet.
Saraki who formally declared Monday did so without the fanfare of Goodluck or IBB. The incumbent Kwara state Governor said " We are about to create a generational change. After 50 years of Independence, we are about to start another 50 years." He went on to state that he was the man to deliver on this change.
Though commentators are questioning the mans real intentions and chances, he is the current head of the Nigerian Governors Forum and as such may have some persuasion over those that may deliver the Presidency in 2011. (After all Nigeria for all its claims still has a rudimentary democracy in place, often controlled by those directly in power)
Finally Nihu Ribadu the darling of the intelligensia and diasporan Nigeria declared his intention to run under ACN. And will formalise his campaign in the coming weeks and months. The former EFCC head returned from self imposed Exile a couple of months ago after clearing his name and has been on the cards to run under an anti corruption banner ever since.
The one problem I foresee in this strategy is his funding; To run for President in this country as in all countries costs money, but it also costs you in allegiance. Political Godfatherism is rife and often the Godfathers are not altogether 'clean'. Ribadu must ensure his are whiter than white in order to maintain his strategy.
The race is warming up in other areas with suggestions that Goodlucks speech or part of it was plagiarised from Atikus in 2006. Next carries a story on this and refers to a similair event that unfolded in the US campaign last year.
Atikus campaign manager played down interest but it must have been a smug feeling to be told the major player in the race 'borrowed' the odd paragraph from an old speech.
It is a minor blow to the Goodluck camp in what had been billed both here on this blog and elsewhere as an impressive speech.
The support that Goodluck received at his declaration was initially impressive but questions remain as to the loyalty of the Governors. With the PDP primaries for them occurring before that of the Presidency, there are thoughts that once each has secured their position, the professed loyalty may change...
Saturday, September 18, 2010
This week Nigeria came a step closer to knowing who will rule them for four years.
In a week that has seen the 'old guard' represented by Babangida declare it was now time for Goodluck. The man seemingly born with it on his side.
After 4 hours of standard PDP jamboree filled with musical dedication, medium to long speeches from the 'big boys' of nigerian politics in support of GEJ slogans a plenty from "we no want badluck O, we want Goodluck O" to "goodluck for you, Goodluck for me, Goodluck for Nigeria" and a flourish of short crowd rousing speeches by PDP governors (not all of whom were fully supportive of GEJ: for the uninitiated you can tell by the hats, though in reality there was outright support from the Delta region; Goodlucks area, cautious support from the North and some that wanted to sound a note that even after the primaries they would need tending to) from all areas of Nigeria it came to GEJ himself.
And it has to be said that people are yearning for change here in Nigeria.
The hope they have in this country is something that is relied on heavily: hope for something better, hope for a noticeable change in their lifestyle and hope for something different. While politicians worldwide play on hope and often use rhetoric to enforce it, nowhere else I have seen, has hope been so ingrained in people that any change is welcome. A faith that "e go betta" is strong yet time and time again there is bitter disappointment..
Any single improvement of quality of life will engender a warmth in the people. And from todays carnival some would say circus it was a message that hope will turn to reality.
I hope that Nigerians can discard their hope for something more solid...with PDP primaries running till end of October, and INEC registration in November time will tell..