Nigerians are on the march again. They are on the march to seek for new leaders that will be saddled with the affairs of Africa’s biggest country and largest democracy. Africa and the entire world are watching political development in Nigeria. They are on the march for credible and selfless leaders that will save this country from decay and anarchy.
While the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has not declared political campaigns open, even though the timetable is out, the politicians are already doing so. They are reaching out and making mouth-watering promises as ever. They are everywhere doing what they know best. Their oratory is at its peak and best. They can even promise what they can’t do just to get the people’s mandate.
Some politicians have indicated interest in the 2019 political contest while others are still consulting their friends and relatives, including spiritual leaders before they declare their stand. Next to football, Nigerians love politics. Only very few Nigerians deride politics as a dirty game. They are in the minority.
Despite its disdain, many Nigerians still embrace it with both hands. The political temperature is already very high even though the 2019 general election is some months away. It is not unexpected. Everything in Nigeria is determined by its politics. It does not really matter, if it is for good or for bad. Nigerians are busy picking their permanent voter’s cards for the impending political war.
They really want to speak with their voting cards. And they want to speak very loudly and clearly. The youths among them are getting ready to actively participate in the politics of their fatherland. They also want to prove that they are not docile or lazy. Some of them are aspiring to leadership positions. And they are coming in large numbers to participate in the nation’s politics.
They want to determine their future. The coming election will be different from the previous ones. It is going to be more engaging. It is going to cause some surprises. So many politicians will lose their seats on account of abysmal performance. Only a few will retain theirs for doing well. Election year is a pay back time. It is time to reward good work and punish poor work. What the politicians sow is what they will reap. It is another harvest time. The stake is high and the game is becoming competitive and attractive with each passing day. Nigerians are becoming more conscious politically.
Most of them are university graduates and they know their rights. Some of them have travelled and saw how things work outside our shores. Things will never be the same again. In whichever way the events turn out, power must change hands at certain levels of government. Power must change hands and the people will possess their possession.
Things are going to change. Nigeria will never be the same again. The wind of change will soon blow everywhere and nobody can withstand it. It is going to be like a hurricane. It will blow from the north and to the east and west, everywhere in the country. Nigerians will take back their country from those that can be referred to as political jokers and unserious politicians. Nigerians will show them the way out soon and very soon.
All the political parties, especially the major ones are busy strategizing for the epic battle. This is the battle of operation takeover the land. As we are entering the election year, it appears that all is not well with the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC). The conduct of its recent ward congress has demonstrated that the broom is drifting apart. The broom is no longer cohesive. The broom is been torn apart just like the umbrella of yore.
History will repeat itself as the election storms gather. The leadership of the party is helpless as party congress degenerate into political wars. A house divided against itself is bound to fall. That truth is immutable. The 2019 presidential race is between incumbent President Muhamamdu Buhari and those other political parties will bring out. Since Buhari has made his intention to contest come 2019 known to his party, no other presidential candidate will emerge from the broom party.
We saw that with the ruling umbrella behemoth in 2015. For the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), their presidential flag bearer is yet to be unveiled even though some prominent members of the party including former vice president Atiku Abubakar have indicated interest to contest the 2019 presidential election. The Olusegun Obasanjo coalition has finally fused with the ADC party instead of the SDP earlier mooted. As things stand now, the presidency still remains in the north no matter which party wins the presidential election in 2019 since most leading parties have zoned the presidency to the north.
The issue now is who among the northern candidates will emerge victorious in 2019 poll. This should bother all Nigerians. As an incumbent, Buhari has a chance of making it from the APC camp. He can win most votes in the north. He can have inroad in the south, especially the Southwest. If the PDP fields Atiku Abubukar, he can square up with Buhari in the north, make inroad in the Southwest and have a fine outing in the Southeast and Southsouth.
In all, the presidential race is going to be between the APC Buhari and others. Put in another form, the race is going to be between the APC and the opposition. It is like a reverse of the 2015 election scenario. In 2015, the PDP confronted the opposition led by the APC. In 2019, it is like the APC is going to be confronted by the opposition led by the PDP. Since the presidential poll will come first, the outcome may largely influence the outcome of the other elections that will follow.
Nigerians of voting age should get their voter’s cards and get set to vote for any candidate of their choice. They should not only vote, but they should stand and defend their votes. They should stand against rigging. They should stand against ballot snatching and electoral violence. They should stand against under-age voting and vote-buying and falsification of results. They should vote according to their conscience.
Nobody should be coerced to vote against his or her will. Nigerians will speak with their votes. The electoral umpire must make sure that the election is free, fair and credible. It must ensure that our votes count.