The emergence of General Muhammadu Buhari as the All Progressive Congress (APC) Party candidate for the 2015 presidential election rang out with traditional fervor and glad thunder of applause. President Goodluck Jonathan is the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) candidate. Certainly, the race for Aso Rock has begun.
Four years of the Jonathan administration has left us empty-handed. Nigerians have been constricted to a life of disappointment. Disappointment produces despair and despair produces bitterness, and bitterness leads to blindness.
The destroyers of our nation and other untouchable big time criminal treasury looters still walk our streets with halo of adoration – a unique feature of Jonathan’s administration in its most brutal, cold-blooded and vicious form.
Our youth have been plunged into filthy and stinking life jail of hopelessness with majestic scorn for risk and danger. Yes, call them Nigerian’s angry children, their anger is not congenital. It is a response to the feeling that a real solution is a hopeless distance because of the callousness of the people in power.
The Jonathan’s administration gap between promise and fulfilment is distressingly wide. Nigerians are frustrated and angered because extravagant promises made by Mr. Jonathan four years ago are a mockery today. A productive and happy life is not something that you find, it is something that you make. Mr. Jonathan has failed to make life productive and happy for our citizens.
The 2015 presidential election will be fought between the forces of power demanding change and the forces of power dedicated to preserving the status quo. The election will represent the wounds of despair and disappointment of the collective rage of cries of daily hurt and persistent pain of pulverized Nigerians.
The election should serve as a rejection of old way of life – economic coercion, poverty, terrorism, murder, and inhuman contempt – which continues unabated in our country. We must therefore look beyond personal styles, verbal flourishes, and the hysteria of the propaganda machine of the enemies of our republic to sell their revisionist poisoned cocktails to the voters.
As we enter the season of campaign silliness, it is appropriate to remind the contenders that Nigerians are sick of false campaign promises. We are tired of rehashing trite campaign slogans and rhetoric as nightly facts but in reality deferred dreams. We have been nauseated by the promotion of thuggery and violence as a way of electing political office holders.
The Northerners are dying to return to power. Now, they got their candidate in the person of Buhari. The gloat and the glee by the various Northern political groups which accompanied Buhari’s nomination was immediate and immense.
In reaction to Buhari’s nomination, Ibrahim Coomasie said: “I am the Chairman of the Arewa Consultative Forum (ACF) and we have said it before and we are reiterating it that, we are going to support a northern candidate. And since APC has voted a northern candidate, we are going to support him 100 per cent. So, Buhari is our candidate for the 2015 election.
If Buhari is elected president, it means the Northerners will once again control the center after a brief hiatus from power. Suffice it to say, the Northerners have held the federal power and purse for 38 years out of 53 years of Nigeria’s independence.
It is pertinent to remind the Northerners and Buhari in particular, the meaning of power. Power, properly understood and properly utilized, is the ability to achieve a purpose. It is the tool required to bring about social, political, and economic changes. Power defined in this context, is not only desirable but necessary in order to implement the demands of love and justice.
Many Nigerians including my humble self, have criticized Buhari for his selective use of abusive and reckless power when he was the military head of state. General, power without love is reckless and abusive, and love without power is sentimental and anemic. Power at its best is love implementing the demands of justice. Justice at its best is love correcting everything that stands against love.
“Humanity,” Martin Luther King Junior reminds us, “is waiting for something other than blind imitation of the past. We must be hammers shaping a new society rather than anvils molded by the old.” If elected, let’s hope Buhari will shun “blind imitation of the past” and be the “hammer” to shape a new Nigeria and not the “anvil molded by the old.”