By Kelechi Abonuyo
Unless you eavesdrop, you will never hear the tumult of the ants. It is actually a virtue to pay attention and be analytical. It is no longer news about what is happening at the city gates, at the political space in Nigeria, including the trigger and the surge for Permanent Voters Card (PVC) acquisition from Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) by once-upon-a-time apathetic Nigerians. The numbers and the equations have significantly changed. Things are looking positive for Nigerians, who yearn for real positive change.
By May 29, 2023 or before, President Mohammadu Buhari’s tenure, marked sharply by insecurity and economic downturn, will have been completed. President Buhari himself is so disappointing and disappointed. And every constituent part of the nation has now come to terms with the tragedy that is Buhari’s nearly 8years presidency. Before his time, Nigerians were full of hope, which was eventually dashed with inefficient administration, stiff and insensitive body language and nepotic tendencies. President Buhari embarrassed the North and many other Nigerians, who put all their trust in him. And obviously Nigerians can’t wait to see the end of this nightmare.
As soon as the ruling party, All Progressives Congress (APC), and the main opposition party, People’s Democratic Party (PDP), disappointed the Nigerian people with their choice of presidential candidate for next year’s general election, the Nigerian people rose, organized and matched these political parties’ impunity and insensitivity with a firm resolve.
Across the city capitals in Nigeria, what started like a joke on social media eventually made a quick land-fall, like a hurricane, much to the consternation of the ruling class. The Nigerian people, led by the youths, are now determined to snatch victory by themselves from the jaws of defeat. They want their life back. They are so determined to elect Mr Peter Obi, of Labour Party, their president in the 2023 general elections. Mr Obi, whom many say understands the economy well, who was the former governor of Anambra State, got into Labour party, when it was not fashionable to be a Labour party member. He has been going round the country, preaching his skill-sets — including his prudent management of the economy, by making verifiable references to Anambra State, where he positively changed many indices of good governance as governor. Mr Obi got good education, when he studied at virtually all the top rate Business Schools around the world. Bad economy, together with its ripple effects, is the main problem confronting Nigeria. His in-depth understanding of the global, regional and national economy is simply amazing. The facts and figures are in his finger tips. [You may] go and verify! He has proven to critical-Nigerians [that] he has got the right attitude to life and leadership. When he is reviled, he never reviles in return. Instead he admonishes, knowing the treacherous political landscape of Nigeria, where everyone is needed on board to win. It may be difficult to notice [that] he is a billionaire, unlike most Nigerian billionaires whose aura betrays even at 100miles away. Mr Obi is firm, respectful and positive. He is a team player and solution oriented. His skill-sets, education, attitude and type of person sit well in the psyche of the Nigerian voters, which is why they are now falling head over heel in support for him to succeed the incumbent president Buhari. It came to pass therefore that Mr Peter [Gregory] Obi of Labour Party indeed won the hearts of the his countrymen and women with force of personal example.
As at the last count 22 support groups, with national diversities, are [okwute] rocky behind Peter Obi for president. The New Nigerians Anchor Point (NNAP) is one of them, under the umbrella of #Obi-dients —- an important, trending hashtag adopted by the followers of Mr Obi’s political ideology, based on the current exigencies of poor national economy, where politics should not cost the earth. The members of the group, known as Obi-dients, say Obi-dience is better than Sacrifice, with which they spite every ethno-religious and political party persuasion, affiliation or impediment. The Nigerian people have their eyes on the ball and are all out for this course as much as Mr Obi.
To be sure, this is the longest duration, between party primaries and the general elections, since the return of democracy in 1999. This duration presents ample time for brand building, firming up and harmonization of the human networks across the nation. It also presents some difficulties, when it comes to sustaining the high momentum of the movement and the accompanying topical issues, without contradiction of facts and figures.
As soon as Mr Obi and his Labour Party took the airwaves and then made a quick landfall on the streets of Nigeria, suffering Nigerians, many of them youths, milled out of their remote corners of the country and seized the floor too in support. But the ruling party and its main opposition are neither smiling nor sleeping. They have doubled their effort to ensure they do not go down without a fight. A few times they have tried to resurrect dead ethno-religious sentiments, in order to stoke the north against the south, and the west against the east, all in their desperate attempt to cause discord among the one united, suffering masses. How far this primitive, comatose, parochial tactics will go is yet unknown.
*Kelechi Abonuyo is the Director-General, NNAP, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org