(Continued from last Monday)
Law Number Seventeen: Seek and Nurture Lawyer Friendships. Always go out of your way to make friends with lawyers and sundry law officials. Go a-borrowing, if need be, to sustain such friendships. You’d need them as you traverse the political wilderness, known for its legal fireworks.
‘A good politician’ has connections in the supreme quarters of law. Someone can talk with someone somewhere, and without enlisting for or standing the election, the wig and gown or rather the bar and the bench can land you, magically, in that office. This is no laughing matter. Make friends with a lawyer today.
Law Number Eighteen: Never Be Naive With Trust! Don’t trust even yourself as you may never know how low you could go in this game of ego and self. If you find yourself trusting someone, never be naive about it. By the way, in Nigeria the political synonym for the word, naive, is mugu.
No ‘good politician’ can or should fall mugu or trust himself or anyone for that matter, muguishly. Never dare it. Never forget bad politicians who are either dead or terminally finished because they were naive to trust like a mugu. Political naïveté is suicide!
Therefore, with everything in you, doubt even yourself. It will save you from heartbreak or betrayal. Double-check everything anybody says. If your diehard supporters vouch for Plan A, accept it but start devising a different roadmap immediately.
Develop Plans B, C, even D in the inner recesses of your cardiac oblongata. If you don’t need them at the end of the day, all well and good. Or is it not better, as Les Brown said, ‘to be prepared and not have the opportunity than have the opportunity without being prepared?’ Be wise!
Law Number Nineteen: If You Fall In Love, Keep One Eye Opened! Is love the same thing as trust? When I love someone, does it mean I trust such a one? Vice versa, do I love the person I trust?
Sorting out these vexed thoughts throws my mind into what Americans call topsy-turvy. Both might be identical, even Siamese twins, but they are not the same. So, Law Number Eighteen is not the same as this. This law is commonsensical, or better still, native intelligence.
‘A good politician’ is a player who, without any quality formal education, navigates the turbulent sea of politics so intelligently whereas the most educated dares and drowns. ‘A good politician’ is a genius, a whizz-kid, a magician. (S)he does things so effortlessly, so precociously. That is why the illiterate least-paid power-holder in Nigeria earns higher than the professor.
‘A good politician’ is different from you and me as well as from the mammoth crowd of paper politicians. In Nigeria, ‘a good politician’ is forever ahead: (s)he never falls in love. But if in love, (s)he keeps at least one eye opened. In politics Nigeriana, love is not blind.
‘A good Nigerian politician’ knows when to fall in and out of love. That explains all the spasmodic political alliances and defections. You cannot survive otherwise. Those who attempted godliness, which is a very apolitical virtue, are languishing outside the circles of power and influence!
Let’s conclude for today with Law Number Twenty: Don’t Only Procure A Godfather, Flaunt Him! You are an incomplete ‘good politician’ if you don’t have ‘a good godfather;’ one who is dreaded by even those occupying the bedroom and corridors of power. Never make just anybody your godfather. In particular, don’t ever pick a peaceable gentleman for this scarecrow role.
Such political foolery can be counterproductive. Your godfather must be one whose clout ensures that even power-holders kowtow to you or smile sheepishly once they see you. Never hesitate to flaunt him twenty five hours daily lest anyone forgets. Politicians love someone they fear; you know, someone who holds and squeezes their balls from time to time; someone who sneezes and they catch a cold.
Your godfather must be one who can dethrone the power-holder who did not give you that contract or appointment. With a man like that, all political doors are perpetually open(ed) to (for) you. With that macho-figure at the background, you can afford to strut all over the place as a colossus that you are not. Go, and get ‘a good godfather’ now.
… To be continued next Monday
Ekweremadu: Why my in-laws may fight forever
I am crazy about the South East. Apart from my wife, most of my childhood friends back then in the Republic of Cameroon were Igbo. Although my parents are Akwa Ibom, my igbocentricity is so high, I may be half-here, half-there.
The foregoing explains why I always have an opinion or two on Biafra, IPOB and such other southeastern ambitions. I am appalled by the inhuman, Stone Age injustice that this country continues to mete out to the region.
Alas, aren’t the Igbo their own worst enemy? Don’t they unite more against their own than known common enemy? Pray, who’s the one nationally respected Igbo leader loved and respected at home?
I had the privilege penultimate Saturday to sit a few feet from where Ohanaeze Ndigbo President-General, Chief Nnia Nwodo, gave his fiery chairman’s speech at an Mboho Mkparawa Ibibio lecture, presented by former Governor Victor Attah in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State. On that day, I felt that the Igbo chose him well. However, how can a people under such a leader act as irresponsibly, as illiterately and as shamelessly as we saw in Germany over the weekend?
Sen. Ike Ekweremadu, love or hate him, is an asset to Nigeria and more to the South East. Even if he wasn’t, that village-like treatment in the full glare of the world only masks the serious readiness of the Igbo to be heard. Now is not too late to apologise, retrace and restrategise!