Browsing: Salihu Moh. Lukman

This was one of the contentions of the director-general of the Progressive Governors’ Forum, Salihu Moh. Lukman, in an opinion piece he entitled ‘Nigerian Politics and Question of National Unity’

If anything, the lesson from the 2019 elections, which every APC leader and member should be reminded, is that APC was defeated in Rivers, Zamfara, Bauchi, Adamawa, Oyo and many other places by aggrieved APC leaders who worked against candidates or leaders of the party as a result of internal disagreements around candidate selections for Governorship of these states.

The challenge of adopting a shared understanding of what it will take to build a progressive party requires introspection and tolerance. Leaders have to be able to debate, critique and compete freely without being discourteous or criminalising each other.

It was the late economist, John Kenneth Galbraith, in the book: “The Nature of Mass Poverty,” who warned that: “Poverty is man’s (and woman’s) most powerful and massive affliction. It is the progenitor of much further pain – from hunger and disease on to civil conflict and war itself.” In our case in Nigeria, beyond our self-inflicted ethnic and religious conflicts, poverty is also at the root of all the kidnappings, abductions and banditry.

Another gentleman, on the platform of Prof. Toyin Falola-facilitated USA Africa Dialogue Series, asked the questions: “Are the parties (APC and PDP) anything more than instruments for capturing power? Do they have any significant ideological values? Are their members not the same people who have crisscrossed parties in the name of where to gain power?”

This is clearly what is at play since the statement issued by His Excellency, Rotimi Akeredolu, on January 18, 2021 asking herdsmen to vacate Forest Reserves in Ondo State within seven days as well as banning night-grazing with immediate effect. The objective of the Ondo State Government was well articulated, which is to ensure that the forest reserves in Ondo State are disallowed from being used as hideouts for kidnappers, bandits and other criminals.

No party in the history of Nigerian politics survived leadership crisis of the magnitude experienced in the APC, leading to the dissolution of the Comrade Adams Oshiomhole-led NWC. From the First Republic to the current Fourth Republic, all political parties that went through leadership crisis ended up with divisions and breakaways. None survived and remained united.