2015 went down in our political history as the most dramatic year since the handover of governance to civilian powers. I remembered each month had its peculiar story. From January till December was a hit back to back. Thanks to our seasoned political actors and players.
The Elections, allegations and Counter responses from every sides of the divide drenched the nation into its strongest political mess. The aftermath of this mess spread into 2016 till 2017. As a matter of fact, we are still nursing the damages incurred. If care isn’t taken, we will walk into 2019 with the heaps.
The truth being that some issues were intentionally left unsolved and unattended to. As a result of the trending ‘selfishism’ or just a way to promote the already prophesied shenanigan initiated by the UN to be the aftermath of the 2015 elections. Recall that everyone had predicted the end of ‘Nigeria’ by 2015. The election came and went. We are not divided though, but the chants and body language as of today is pointing a delayed division at sight.
Nigerians voted out the ruling power in 2015 strongly because of two things:
i. To test the other spectrum
ii. To give peace a chance.
If only we knew that the former isn’t a criteria for the latter, this spectre would have been avoided. So I thought.
The elections made one thing clear; the fact that our politicians are basically of the same folds. Spoilt engines in new busses! Trust them. They will always find new ways and method to ‘gerrymand’ us to fall on track. Restructuring is the new song. And we are yet again not allowed to make choices in our own decisions.
How exactly did we get here?
The EXECUTIVE VS LEGISLATURE: How Did We Get Here?
The ruling power has failed in achieving its set goals. The hopes of the people dampened once again. Failed promises and struggling projects executions everywhere. But they still want us to believe in their effectiveness.
In such plight, they have relatively found an emergency exit away from the failures. Without shame, they are beginning to point accusing fingers to the members of the National assembly and its leadership. As matter of fact, pushing blames on the NASS when things aint going right seems like an easy thing to do already. We saw how OBJ and GEJ had accused and ‘black named’ the same NASS in their respective era.
But over flogging the scenario as we currently experience under PMB/PYO administration is the issue. From time in memorials, the legislative house has always been known to be domineering and respect commanding. This is why the executive arm of any government will always see them as ‘bossy’ and a threat to development. It is everywhere. So the actions of our red chamber are not new except we want to selfishly create excuses from it. Concurrently, this NASS also have majority of its members to be in the same party as the ruling party.
The problem started back in 2015 with an unresolved rift the party failed to handle judiciously. After the success of the General elections, attention shifted swifted swiftly to the leadership of the hallowed chambers. With so many hands in the sky, the party failed to curtail the roaring rage of the tigers. Everyone wanted to have a taste of the sudden victory.
Recall that APC (the ruling party today) was created outb of a selective merger of forces from various political parties. The Tinubu Caucus of the ACN; the Buhari led CPC, the Saraki/Atiku spearheaded PDP, the Rochas APGA and the ANPP. These are strong reasons why analysts posit that is the reason for the current APC mess. Some have even said they weren’t prepared for this opportunity.
With the victory in the presidential poll, the CPC fraction have been assumed to have gotten their share. ACN filled the Vice president (who is now in acting capacity) but were still thirsty for dominance in the NASS leadership. Other fractions within this mega party sensed inappropriateness and decided to fight it. Saraki and Dogara of the PDP fraction suddenly became the popular enemy for their stubborn grounds in their respective chambers. Having to tackle out a common goal, with the members of the assembly solidly behind them against the party’s wish, they insisted on the legislative independence of no interference.
In the light of these, some party faithful are referred to as original members while the others are ascribed antagonistic members. Of course, the adjudge dominating and original caucus of the party are not pleased. And so they wanted to get their bet right. How then do they then settle?
One would have thought the President (PMB) would intervene to let the peace reign. We know of the sagacity of OBJ during his reign. But it only became more fortified when he made a diplomatic statement of: I will work with whoever emerges winner of NASS elections. The statement made the sturborn candidates intensify as they felt the president will still be pleased with the results either way. To h*ll with the party; they thought. But in the end, the presidency spoke in a different language. One will think the president wasn’t in charge of his presidency.
Like I said earlier, the party made the issue escalated beyond bounds as though they do not have the proper hierarchy to handle such. Games went on as played and we still have Saraki and Dogara as head of the NASS. You know the rest. But till date, the warring fractions and caucuses are still logging it at the expense of governance. This issue cost them state elections in 2 states and nearly affected their stance in the Ondo polls.
Now as an excuse for failed leadership, they refer us to the stifled neck of the NASS. The NASS is not as complex as they paint it to look though. When properly managed, you will get your results. I say again; ask OBJ.
To wrap up this section of our editorial this week, I want to throw this question to all: Is Saraki the Problem of the NASS?
IS SARAKI THE PROBLEM OF NASS?
Judging by all faults, Saraki is NOT the problem with the NASS. He is only a head of a league of aggrieved senators who felt they are constantly being cheated by the ruling party leadership of which they belong. If this makes any sense to you, then you will understand that he cant but dance to the tune of this rebels.
Recall that the rebellion was what ‘master pieced’ his election into office as a beneficiary of the ill-handled party crisis. This set of senators are refusing to be mere toothless bull dogs with the power to strike but cant do when hurt. They feel the party and the presidency should accord them their respect as senators and not as ordinary party members. This is an issue that is currently following the rejection of Magu as the substantive EFCC chairman.
Magu’s issue is not just about being repellant to anti grant war. It is about the senate wanting to make their stance felt and the presidency not wanting to accord the senate. They claim he failed their screening and should not be confirmed. There is more to this Legislative VS Executive fight that we think. Unless the party steps in pragmatically, we are not going to see the end soon.
For Saraki on this game of thrones, he is in between the devils and the deep blue sea. He has to put into consideration the interest of his house before any decision could be made for them to continue to see him as a perfect boss and to continue to cement his political relevance.
In all of this, the presidency keeps suffering in projects execution and the legislature keeps suffering banters from the general public as they are being seen as anti-development in government. It’s more like watching the team A VS team B of a football club battling for the first team jerseys.
In the spirit of this, trust the political Admiral Saraki is using the whole game to his advantage. Recall that he was discharged of wrong doings in the Senate forgery case earlier this year. And have also been declared free of all false asset declaration charges by CCT. And guess what? He is testing the waters for 2019 already. Smooth criminal!
That said. The senate under his leadership is actually making progress even with all distraction. A record of over 105 bills has been passed in only two years in office. It is only a question of how impactful these bills will be. Let me re-iterate here that objectivity is the bane of goodwill and development. No one is sanctifying anyone. What I am only preaching is for us to look beyond facts to see details. This is the only way we will be able to see and tackle our problems before 2019.
In the meantime, lets ponder on this: is restructuring the way out? Watch out…