Politics: The Gathering Storm Against 2027.

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By Abdu Labaran Malumfashi.

A little after the Sallah break, all roads appeared to have led to Katsina state. To the towns of Katsina and Daura, in particular. And the common thread of the visitors is that all of them are top politicians in this country, and therefore, the purpose of their visit should be obvious to the watchers of politics in Nigeria.

There are two brands of politics in this country. These are, the ‘ordinary’ variety and the one played by the professional politicians, which is the ‘real’ politics. The former brand is played by the common people, whereas the latter is played by the professional politicians.

The common people insult, abuse, fight and sometimes even kill each other in the course of their politicking, while the professional politicians, most of whom do not vote at all, are guided by the principle that ‘in politics, there are no permanent friend or permanent enemy, only permanent self interest’.

For the professional politicians, sometimes someone may find themselves in the same camp with the ‘enemies’, and different parties with their ‘friends’, a situation which the common people fail to come to terms with, and leave the professional politicians to their shenanigans.

Which brings us to why all roads appeared to have led to Katsina state shortly after the Big Sallah break. They all came on the pretext of paying Sallah homage to the former President Muhammadu Buhari, Emir of Daura, Alhaji Faruk Umar Faruk, all the two in Daura town. They also went to the state capital, Katsina, where they purportedly paid more Sallah homage to the Governor of the State, Dr. Dikko Umar Radda, PhD, CON, and the Emir of Katsina, Alhaji Dr. Kabir Usman.

But the ‘real’ reason for the visits, according to the watchers of the Nigerian politics, is simply  to ‘strategise’ for the next general elections, which are coming up in 2027. Nothing more, nothing less.

Those who visited included the 2003 Presidential Candidate of the opposition PDP, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, the former Kwara State Governor, former Senate President and a Presidential aspirant on the platform of the PDP, Alhaji Abubakar Saraki, the former Federal Capital Territory (DCT)Minister and immediate Governor of Kaduna State, Malam Nasir El-Rufa’i and Alhaji Musa Halilu, the Dujima of Adamawa, among many others.

Of course, the actual reasons why they visited and what they discussed with their hosts in Katsina state were only known to them, except for the speculations that followed.

Others come on the pretext that they were in the state in preparation for the forthcoming security meeting of the north west governors, which will be hosted by Governor Dr. Radda, who is also the chairman of the Northern Governors Forum (NGF).

But long before the visits, there had been calls for and rumours of alleged political realignment in the country, for the principal purpose of ‘ousting’ the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) from power. The party APC was itself the product of the amalgamation of many political parties with came together for the sole aim of getting rid of the then ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) led by President Ebele Jonathan from office. And the APC succeeded, despite the boasting by the PDP that it would rule the country for the next 60 years. A boast which many Nigerians answered in the negative, by saying ‘God forbid, not in our lives’. 

The publisized visit of a former governor from the northern part of the country to some of the opposition parties in Abuja, before the Katsina visit, was alleged to be in connection with the realignment of forces in the political sphere in Nigeria ahead of 2027.

In the forefront of the calls for realignment before the 2027 General Elections were people like Ahaji Atiku Abubakar, who is also the Galadiman Ganye. Mr. Omoyele Yele Soware of the Sahara Reporters fame and the Presidential candidate of the opposition African Action Congress (AAC), among many leading opposition politicians in the country.

Some of all these people and more, are said to have complained of the ‘ineptitudeness’ of President Bola Ahmed government and the ‘insensitivity’ of some of the people working in it about the current ‘hardship’ faced by the ordinary Nigerians, which included most of the civil servants in the country.

The hardship is allegedly caused by the International Monetary Fund’s (IMF’s) anti people prescribed economic policies of the President Bola Ahmed Tinubu (BAT), which include the removal of the subsidy on petroleum products, devaluation of the local currency, Naira and the recent removal of the subsidy on electricity, which led to the recent hike in its tariff, even though without a corresponding improvement in the service. If anything, the service of the electricity providers in the north west appeared to have regressed even for the so called ‘Band A’ customers, whose tariff was doubled.

All this, against the backdrop of the opulent and lavish earning and lifestyle of the political appointees and those in the National Assembly (NASS) working as the ‘representatives’ of the people, which is said to be in the range of N 29+ million per month for the Senators and N 20+ million for members of the House of Representatives. And, allegedly, only God All mighty knows how much the political appointees, such as ministers earn.

The recent statement attributed to the Senate President and former Governor of Akwa Ibom State, Mr. Godswill Akpabio about the purchase of a brand new aeroplane for the President did not go down well with majority of the people in the country, many of whom are very poor, with the non existent capacity of feeding themselves in a day.

He is alleged to have said that, although many Nigerians are currently suffering, the Nigerian Senate would still approve the money for the purchase of the new aircraft for the President since he was not supposed to travel in a commercial plane. But some leaders of countries more advanced than Nigeria do fly commercial planes.

It is an open secret that service in this country, is to self, and not to the people or the country. And as far as majority of the political appointees are concerned, their interest comes first and foremost before the people’s, or the nation’s as a whole.

More often these days, Nigerian politics has nothing to do with putting the people’s interest first. For instance, it is alleged that the Minister of Works, Mr. Dave Omahi, who was a former Governor of Ebonyi State, had inspected seven federal government projects in the southern part of the country, while he never deemed it fit to inspect any federal government project in the north. The development has caused tongue wagging in the area.

Above all, the President himself was alleged by some people, to be ‘favouring’ his people in a nation that has many ethnic groups, some as populated as the the president’s.

But the duo of Malam Garba Shehu, who acts as the spokesman of the former president and Alhaji Sani Ahmed Ali, the Chairman of the ruling APC in Katsina State could not be reached for comment, as telephone calls to them were either not answered or could not go through.

Whoever is the President and whichever party is in power, may it always be well with and for our country, Nigeria.

Malam Malumfashi wrote from Katsina.

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