Nigerian Opposition: Rise Of The New Minority And New Majority – Uri Ngozichukwuka

12 mins read

The Nigerian opposition presents a high level of PR blunder in both body language and reckless speeches, which undoubtedly points to the fact that Peter Obi’s emergence is grossly unsettling. This discomfort in the opposition is not about to ease up; this is just the beginning.

There’s so much willingness on a very willing Nigerian polity to do the right thing and  pressure on leaders or politicians to do  right by the people.  Rightness has fast become a fad in an otherwise lawless and reckless society.

There’s also the breath of fresh air and relief this whole development has brought to a lot of well meaning and highly placed Nigerians. There’s so much hope in the horizon that’s shining so brightly and dimming every ethnic and religious biases. In a short while those caught in the web of the later are finding themselves in the “new minority” web and this is not about to go away .

Obi’s emergence can never be wished away even though it was never considered a distant possibility. Everyone agrees no one saw it coming. Divine orchestration took us unawares and for once the Nigerian opposition appears to be coming alive.

By 60 solid years after independence Nigeria as a country has proved to the world the country was awash with not just natural  resources but great intellectual human resource in every area. In  Academics its been reported that top ten professors in most universities in these countries are Nigerians. Top students etc. Even silicon valley the  world’s tech haven looks to Nigeria for fresh young  techies . The health systems of the United Kingdom US and Canada won’t be what it is today without Nigerian health professionals. Doctors nurses.

Sad fact about this is we train them here with our hard earned money . The west harvests them. Every year the number of doctors and nurses migration keeps increasing. Who would you blame? It’s a trend that’s gone on for years but tripled in the last 3 years. Why not? The United Nations stipulates a doctor to 600 patients. In Nigeria it’s a doctor to 8000 patients. When it comes to statistics and ratio we always perform poorly. Case in point our police force and electricity generation.

Back to the  endless list of great phenomenal Nigerians doing exceedingly well in all parts of the world and adding to the economic  growth and stability in other countries. Our entertainment industry has taken the world by storm yet it’s still an ocean of untapped talents.

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In 60 years Nigeria is not a country to be ignored by any country . However the feats of its citizens all over the world cannot be attributed to the good leadership of the country. In a turnaround way perhaps it’s safe to say the lack of good  leadership which has led to deterioration of the quality of life and infrastructural deficit coupled with poor economic policies has solidified or toughened the average Nigerian to rise above the circumstances and seek opportunities outside the shores.

The average Nigerian living in Nigeria does the following  for himself. Electricity. Housing. Education. Communication. Transportation. Health. Security. Despite these challenges, there has been weak Nigerian opposition to bad governance.

The government seem to have taken its hands off these as the years go by.

Democracy drastically degraded the standard of living as career  politicians turned the country into private businesses, even as Nigerian opposition suffered some setbacks. A money sharing culture swallowed the manufacturing and agricultural sector. Even our crude oil is exported to be  refined and imported for use. Wow we must be such a laugh in the comity of nations.

Our loan portfolio has quadrupled and the coming generation may not rest easy in this country that’s if there’s a country left.

What’s baffling in the Nigerian opposition is the silence from so many quarters. The nation has become a rouge state. Stories of missing funds and none is brought to book. Stories of reptiles ingesting millions. Millions being paid to bandits over incessant kidnappings. Government officials negotiating with kidnappers. Kidnappers pointing fingers at some government officials as part of the crime ring.

Tales of the unexpected. The influx of weaponized ragtag insurgents and the plot twists. The christening and re-christening of hopeless killers from BOKO HARAM to Herdsmen to bandits. The re-absorption of killers into the Nigerian army thereby compromising our sovereignty as a nation through security. The unbridled bloodletting. The list is endless.

This is a country where citizens are so traumatized that holding leaders accountable is not on their to-do list. They don’t even know they have such rights. They don’t understand how they should be governed. Every four years the masses are  played against each other.  Whipping up ethnic and religious sentiments to keep them busy and fighting each other at the grass root level while they position themselves for better and bigger  chunks of the cake. They never forget to throw a few bones here and there to buy the people’s votes. Sometimes I wonder why they bother  knowing they will still rig. Ultimately they out rig each other and the greater rigger wins.  The cycle continues.

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What’ adds to the long list of baffling happenstance in Nigeria is the sale of the presidential form for a  N100 million. The scandalous primaries and damned debased delegates.

Certainly governance and nation building is far from this lot. It’s always a cash out for the politicians in this Nigerian styled democracy.

The question is will it be business as usual? Is there any hope in the horizon?  Do Nigerians even know the type of leader they expect or what to expect of him or her? Now they know they do.

A Peter Obi appears on the scene unexpectedly and he’s singing a new song . His contemporaries loathe him secretly and openly but the true Nigerian loves him. Something had to give. For the first time antecedents will count and the fooled man on the street has stayed hungry for too long and his true Nigerian spirit is saying ” there has to be something better.”

This game of musical chairs is up. The infantile rascality of the Nigerian politician that numbs the polity must end. The sharing has to stop  . It’s time to build the country. It’s time for the real  change in how governance is perceived both by those serving and those being served.

The message is catching on like wild fire and everyone is seeing possibilities and are buying into this new Normal that’s upon us.   It won’t be an ‘ if you can’t beat them join them’ for all but for majority it certainly will.

There is a rising new minority and an already risen new majority . The interesting thing about this tide  both are growing daily at an alarming speed. This can only spell Bloom for the nation and gloom for the “rising new minority’.

There has been fears by middle fencers, jeers from the new minority, aka the Nigerian opposition, and genuine concern from newly converted Obidients”. Questions keep pilling up.  How will  Obi make it to Aso Rock? How can Obi make it to the presidency? . What’s the strategy? What’s the plan?

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Going by what’s been described as a movement these answers will only end on positive notes. Why? When there was this trepidation and anxiety over the choice of vice president, everyone waited with bated breath and watched he was snubbed by Kwakwanso. This made  way for a future forward  sound ,educated ,young dynamic , Polished Yusuf Datti Ahmed . A man with a good  pedigree and super confident and impeccable .

The choice of Datti was well received and according to Datti in an Arise TV interview he humbly admitted he was numb at such acceptance and was going through the pinch myself mode. In the interview watching him refer to his principal and seeing he greatly admired him was a ” Never seen before” in Nigerian politics. So Kwakwanso’s refusal was Fate’s masterstroke.

Everything targeted against Peter works best for him with the attacker holding the short end of the stick.

The Chief proponents of social media on which they rode to power in 2015 are relegating Obi’s rise to only social media. Well, if social media worked in 2015 trust me it’s grown more muscles and fangs and will do same come 2023.

In closing, our first  60 years has been about who we are and what we can do and  we’ve shown the world how great we are in so many ways too numerous to mention. It’s time we show the world we have great leaders to add to that impressive list of great phenomenal Nigerians.

However this time it won’t be about just doing great things outside the shores of their country but doing exceedingly amazing good for their country in their country for the common good of all.

Adiya Uri Ngozichukwuka, an author, lives in Lagos.

 

Uri Ngozichukwuka
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