With the horrendous performance of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in the just concluded presidential polls which performance has left Nigerians bitter that their choice was violated, the battle royale is poised to move to the courts whose independence and impartiality Nigerians have become increasingly skeptical of.
However, from all indications, while the teams of lawyers fine-tune their strategies for the legal fireworks, Atiku Abubakar, the vanquished candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) would most likely retreat to his palatial Dubai villa to lick his wounds. Other PDP big wigs and even scallywags may yet join him in the enforced retreat.
The party’s defeat at the polls may have been confirmed before dawn on March 1,2022,but in truth, it was a defeat dipped in the dye a decision taken almost a year ago by another man.
In May 2022,when it became clear even to the blind that the PDP had perfected plans to sell its presidential ticket to the highest bidder, Peter Obi,the only man with a conscience in all of the PDP fled the party as he could not bring himself to participate in such a moral morass.
The party’s primaries went on as predetermined and aided by a last minute twist and bottomless pockets, thanks to time spent serving Nigeria in various capacities,Atiku Abubakar, the Wazirin Adamawa, coasted to victory. Some prominent party men however left the venue of the primaries angry and began to spin the greatest sabotage seen in recent times in party politics in Nigeria.Meanwhile Peter Obi pitched his tent with the Labour Party.
In the months that followed, while the PDP dismissed the ‘small matter’ of the ‘party without structures’, and instead courted their G5 saboteurs led by Nyesom Wike like a hyena in heat, Peter Obi’s popularity spread like wildfire until the battle lines were drawn on February 25,2023.
When the results were announced almost five days later,the PDP only slightly performed better than Peter Obi and the Labour Party. But not a few of those who voted know that figures were desperately cooked to rob the people’s president of victory.
However, it is from the way his searing popularity reduced the PDP’s chances at the polls to cold ash that lessons must be learnt. While many Nigerians had even before the primaries asked the PDP to zone its presidential ticket to the Southeast, the party refused arguing that its best chances lay in the bottomless pockets, ethnic and religious appeal of Atiku Abubakar.
Maybe, if they had given the ticket to Peter Obi, their chances would have brightened into victory at the polls. Maybe if they had joined forces with the Labour Party, a satisfactory middle ground would have been reached for both parties.
Instead, the PDP suddenly found itself up against enemies within and outside the party none more dangerous and destructive than the so-called G5 governors three of which slumped to defeats in the senatorial elections they contested on the same day.
The just concluded elections holds a legion of lessons for the entirety of the country. The autopsy has only just begun and will take a long time but harsh lessons will be learnt every day.
There would be luminous lessons for those for whom everything is for sale. Nigerians continue to insist that the eternal darkness that the APC is could not have seeped into Nigeria had the PDP not held the door ajar in 2015.
Indeed, for the PDP, it is a debacle hatched in Dubai and the bitterest lesson would be that even in Dubai, the discretion to let sleeping dogs lie is more useful than the valour of waking them to throw barking fits.
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