A game of mutual assured destruction

It is difficult to say which is more responsible of the two leading political parties.” “Why did you say so? The fact that one is ruling and the other is out in the cold is enough difference.” “Both are hopelessly divided; whacked by irreconcilable differences.” “You are correct, but I think PDP is in a worse situation. Former President Olusegun Obasanjo recently called it a dying party.” “Don’t mind OBJ; he contributed the most to PDP’s problems.” “How do you mean? He left office since 2007.” “As the first president produced by the party, he failed to give it a solid foundation; instead, he erected it on quicksand.” “I see! So, when storms and winds blew upon that house, great was its ruin.” “I am sure OBJ will not agree with me. In fact, he will abuse or even box me if I get close to him.” “Like he did to the musician who sang ‘Nigeria jaga-jaga; Nigeria scatter-scatter.”

“Thank God he is no longer in power; or else, many of those causing kata-kata all over the place would have heard ‘win’.” “I agree. Imagine if OBJ were still president; what do you think he would have done to Ali Modu Sheriff?” “Simple. He would have told the man he was coming to his house for dinner. ‘Tell your wife to prepare pounded yam with egusi soup and bush meat,’ he would have directed.” “And you think that one would have obeyed?” “It is interesting they always all complied; and after having his fill and belching like a typical farmer, he would draw out a resignation letter and order them to sign.” “What if they refused?” “None dared to. Even someone everyone thought was very bold crumbled without a whimper when confronted with a similar situation” “Was he also PDP chairman?” “No, I heard he was a minister; up in the air in a military helicopter; the man was told, “O ya, sign this” “And what did he do?” “If you were in his shoes, what would you have done? The man looked down from the dizzying height of the copter and quickly appended his signature, smiling!” “He should have frowned; if only to show his displeasure.” “That was pointless; it was also dangerous.

In that situation, you can sign and still…” “I understand; but do you think OBJ could have easily unravelled Sheriff?” “Easily, my brother” “The man has a lot of court judgments in his pockets; I don’t think checkmating him would be that easy.” “Court judgment, my foot. If he likes, let him have judges in his pockets; he would still have been no match for OBJ.” “You have so much confidence in OBJ.” “I can swear with Ogun, the god of iron.” “O ti o! That is a serious matter, then. People are always eager to swear with the Bible and Quran; not with Ogun.” “To tell you I am sure of my onion. I can count nine or ten methods OBJ would have used to neutralise Sheriff without batting an eyelid.”

“Could that be the reason why PDP leaders rushed to go and embarrass the Ota farmer at a function in Abuja recently?” “Point of correction; they went to greet him. ‘To pay courtesy’, it is called.” “But the man said they embarrassed him.” “Those guys are to blame; they were not bold enough.” “What would they have done?” “They should have dragged OBJ from the nonsense meeting he was attending to come and clean the mess he fathered in PDP. It is his unfinished business.” “You mean it? They should have put the ball right in his court?” “Exactly, that is where it belongs. It is his cup of tea and they should have forced it down his throat.” “But he was forced out of the party by Jonathan. It is Jonathan that should carry the PDP’s shit now, not OBJ.” “And who imposed Jonathan – and the one before him who died? Jonathan merely copied the scripts of OBJ. Unfortunately,he was a poor copy-cat.” “I understand! There was nothing Jonathan tried that OBJ did not do a thousand times over.” “Exactly.I heard even the late Yar’Adua tried to bite the fingers that fed him.” “He not only tried, he actually did; they are always doing that. OBJ did same to his own kingmakers just asMuhahammadu Buhari is doing right now; but let’s leave Umaru out of it. Say no evil of the dead.”

“In Nigeria, we stand William Shakespeare on his head. The good that men do lives after them; the evil is interred with their bones.” “You are talking! We are black, not white. Even where they did no good, we can always invent some!” “And now that OBJ won’t play ball with PDP leaders, who will bell the Sheriff cat?” “It is better if the cat is not belled. Let the bull continue to run riot in PDP’s china shop.” “I didn’t know you hate PDP this much. When did you become an APC sympathiser?” “I don’t hate PDP; neither do I sympathise with APC.” “But you sounded like a card-carrying APC member.” “If ever I carry any political party’s card, I will wait for a serious party.” “How do you mean? The ruling party is not a better party?” “Can’t you see it is also hopelessly divided as the PDP? Is it because they are in power that you have failed to see that?” “It is true there are rumblings in the party…” “It is more than rumblings. The only reason why the party has not collapsed is because it is the party in power.”

“You think it is that serious?Federal largesse is powerful glue, mind you.” “You are correct but the economic crunch has seriously shrunk the largesse. The major distributor is also hopelessly biased in the way he has been distributing the largesse.” “It has been too obvious for everyone to see. A particular region and religion get the beef while the others get bones and crumbs.” “When dogs who get crumbs grumble and prowl, the centre will find it difficult to hold.” “But we cannot afford to have the two leading parties in turmoil at one and same time.” “That is exactly what we will have. APC is standing on one leg at the moment.” “No one who stands on one leg runs fast or makes much progress.” “That is why their government is not making progress. The only leg they are standing on right now is Muslim/North. Their other leg in the South-West has been cut off.” “That will be disaster waiting to happen, considering they never had a foothold in the South-East and South-South to start with.” “APC is a party for the moment; it has no bright future at all. How can it win future elections with the support of only the Muslim/North?” “Trust the politicians; they know both PDP and APC are doomed. There is bound to be realignment of forces.” “You mean new parties will emerge?” “Yes! The realignment of forces is already playing out before our eyes. Some PDP plus some APC will merge and gosomewhere else or adopt a new name. Some APC will also drag along with some PDP and berth somewhere else.”

“Don’t you think the APC has a better chance than the PDP to iron out its differences and still remain a formidable party?” “Can’t you understand? The party is broken already! It has shrunk to one of its legacy parties – the Congress for Progressive Change.” “I now understand! They were the real owners of CHANGE?” “Correct! The others were mere tenants. Who owns the land owns the edifice erected on it.” “It is logical, then, that the others will find their level at the appropriate time.” “You are right. They will, in the interim, pretend to get along. The journey ahead is still far.” “With the way EFCC, DSS, ICPC and CCT are being unleashed on people, dissidents have got to watch it.” “They will. Politicians are smart guys; they know what to do. Did you not see how the New PDP played hide-and-seek with PDP/Jonathan until the eleventh hour?” “When eventually they pulled the carpet from under the feet of PDP/Jonathan, maximum damage that could not be easily ameliorated had been done.” “I am certain we are in for an encore.”

“We have on our hands what is called mutual assured destruction. It is a strategy of deterrence adopted by the superpowers during the Cold War era.” “You mean we are in our own Cold War era at the moment and the two leading parties are bent on destroying each other?” “There is real-politik playing out before our very eyes; the crisis in the two parties will go down the wire up to the next election in 2019.” “Somewhere close to 2019, we must begin to see light at the end of the tunnel – if our democracy survives up till then.” “You want to introduce a new but dangerous dimension to the whole equation.” “Politics in itself is a dangerous game. With the way politicians on both sides have carried themselves, can’t you see that Nigerians are losing interest in democracy?” “Alexander Pope must be right, after all.” “Which of the Popes is that?” “Not any Pope but an illustrious thinker who said the best government is the one that is best administered.” “He is right. Transformation Agenda gave way to Change; yet, nothing changed for the better.”“There can be no good administration when nepotism, cronyism, tribalism, religion, and sex determineappointments.” “The country never had it this bad. Sex for appointment was never heard of during Jonathan’s time.” “I knew it would get to this; ideologues, be they Marxists, Islamists or Anarchists always treat women as lubricants of the struggle.” “But isn’t that corruption?” “No one knows for sure what corruption is again. Jonathan said stealing is not corruption” “And APC has now said budget padding is not corruption.”“In other words, what they say is corruption is what is corruptionand who they say is corrupt is who is corrupt.” “Wonders never cease!”