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*Going! Going! Gone! Nigerian Northern Elites and The Auctioning of Buhari
Auctioning is a process of disposal of tangible goods to the highest bidder at the time the auction cry is over. The highest bidder takes the goods except if a higher bid comes up before the bid is closed. I do remember with nostalgia my early years when after every annual harvest and thanksgiving church service the parishioners gathers for the bazaar sales. The goods offered to The Lord as thanksgiving offerings were usually gathered together for disposal to the highest bidder. The items include tubers of yam, livestock, cattle, clothes, kitchen utensils, bicycles, motorcycles and whatever item the parishioners came to church with. A goat could be sold for twenty times the market value to the cheering of parishioners or in rare cases at the market price especially minutes before the end of the bazaar. The money realized is used to further the work of the Gospel.
The Nigerian Northern Elites have auctioned their greatest chances to reclaim the presidency they lost during the Obasanjo era. Some northern militaricians led by former military president Ibrahim Babangida repackaged Obasanjo for a puppetist agenda in 1998 banking on their knowledge of the former Head of state - fearful, loyal, subservient and they never bargained that Obasanjo would want to be his own man. Years in Maidugeri prison have turned the former Head of State to another personality as he saw himself as the second Mandela of Africa. Since then the north lost grip of power. The greatest chance for the north to regain power back since 2003 was in the personality of former head of state General Muhammadu Buhari.
In 2003 presidential elections the ruling party agreed to allocate Buhari 11 million votes in an election the foreign media had already reported Buhari as leading other aspirants with Ojukwu and Obasanjo trailing . Buhari saw votes coming to him and suddenly the votes disappeared in a twinkle when the ruling PDP rigging wonders appeared. When Nigerians wanted to revolt against the presidential charade called elections, the ANPP governors-elect from the north led by Adamu Aliero of Kebbi state campaigned that the aggrieved should go to court for redress. He was supported by The Nigerian Labour Congress of Oshiomhole ,who contrary to earlier affirmations, refused to bring workers out for protests. ( Continues below….. )
Photo Above: Former head of state General Muhammadu Buhari
The court process was another judicial exercise as all the Justices saw a most wonderful elections with just a few hitches . His own Katsina kinsman and the then Chief Justice of Nigeria, Muhammadu Uwais and his seven man panel blessed the electoral fraud with holy piousness.
In 2007 Buhari came again for the presidency. His greatest enemy was Sanni Yerima , the governor of Zamfara State who introduced Sharia to Nigeria. Governor Yerima with his counterparts in the ANPP so much ganged up against Buhari’s presidential ambition that it took only intelligence reports that the PDP would prefer a Yerima candidacy to that of Buhari for the former governor to step down. Yerima then took a pound of flesh by imposing Edwin Ume-Ezeoke as the running mate against Buhari’s preferred choice of Mike Ahamba. Immediately after the fraudulent 2007 election was over Yerima and Ume-Ezeoke abandoned Buhari and scrambled to submit names to the Yar’adua government for patronage and appointments to the cheering of his northern brothers in the ANPP. Seven man panel of Justices of the Supreme Court handled the case , the three from the north namely Justice Idris Kutigi, Katsina-alu and Dahiru Mustapha and Niki Tobi from the south south saw nothing wrong in the fraud while George Oguntade led other two justices from the south to reject the forgery in a minority judgment. In fact it was the justices from the south that always made futile attempts to salvage the case of the general while their northern colleagues followed the ruling party starting from rtd Justice Nsofor.
In 2011 , a man that rode on Buhari’s back to become governor in kano state, Ibrahim Shekarau, started challenging him. In fact Shekarau drove Buhari out of ANPP and the general had to form his own party , months to the presidential elections. During the presidential campaign eighty percent of funds of the Goodluck –Sambo campaign organization went to the pockets of the northern elites including traditional rulers, opinion leaders and religious leaders. They helped President Goodluck get the mandatory 25% votes in 2/3 states of the federation. It was a charade of securing 25% votes for Goodluck in core northern states. In fact most states of the core north did not display the posters of Goodluck except on the eve of every President campaign and the posters disappeared as quickly as Goodluck leaves the states. There was no radio jingles, nothing to show that another candidate existed but when the results was coming President Goodluck was getting 25% and above in many areas. The northern elites colluded with the ruling party to avoid a run-off election and as such securing the 25% in as many northern states as possible was the major task. Those purchased for the assignment did it without caution and the voter’s suspicion of high level collusion triggered the post election violence.
The funds to used to purchase northern elites were drawn from PPMC, PPPRA, FIRS, Customs, MDAs. Ministers were ordered to mobilize money from their ministries for the purchase. The FCDA released the N7billion naira meant for the vice presidents mansion for this merchandise. When the senators led by Smart Adeyemi recently raised hell about the whereabouts of the money and were told how it vanished, the case died off as a family affair. Northern elites in the past have accused the Igbo politicians of being money conscious but the 2011 presidential elections showed that abundant greed resides in the north more than any part of the country.
Buhari’s attempt to get justice again was truncated by northern justices in the Supreme Court. They initially plotted the removal of uncompromising Salami, from the south west as the President of the Court of Appeal and went on to bury the general in their subsequent judgments which refused to admit audit of electoral materials.
The problem of the north is the north. Had Shekarau availed Buhari of the funds he used to prosecute his presidential campaign, the general would have penetrated the south. General Buhari’s campaign organization suffered severe cash crunch that they couldn’t even pay for party agents to represent them in the polls in some states in the south . where they paid agents, the sum was paltry that the ruling party had a field day inflating votes. Shekarau chased Buhari out of the ANPP and appointed himself a presidential candidate and all his party could get was 917,000 votes while the man he chased away got 12, 214, 000 votes in his new party, CPC. What an irony.
If the northern elites had supported Muhammadu Buhari , the election wouldn’t be that easy for the ruling PDP, but alas they elected to fill their pocket to the brim at the expense of the north. Like Judas Iscariot in the Bible who sold his master Jesus Christ for thirty pieces of silver and later on returned the money and committed suicide in Matthew chapter 26:vs 14-16 the northern elites have sold their political future for a mess of billions of dollars, pounds, euro and naira and as such have led the north into a state of political hara-kiri .
Financial/ IT consultant.
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