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The Presidency and the ruling PDP forcefully had their way in Adamawa. Governor Nyako has been impeached. Nigeria’s constitution suffers violence. Democracy has been setback.
Under the constitution, a governor can only be impeached for “gross misconduct.” For the PDP, Nyako’s crime was not the false allegations contained in the articles of impeachment. To them, his gross misconduct was leaving the reactionary PDP to join the progressive APC. His misdeed was to exercise his constitutional right of freedom of association and political expression by leaving their corrupt assemblage and joining the party that just may represent the best hope of rescuing Nigeria from its present descent into authoritarian darkness.
Perhaps, Governor Nyako’s greatest sin is his temerity to speak truth to power albeit in a courageous way. On two different occasions, he gave an unvarnished insight into the Boko Haram menace and the insecurity engulfing Northern Nigeria. At the Institute of Peace in Washington DC this year when he visited with other Northern governors, he placed the blame for the Boko Haran insurgency on the Jonathan presidency. He then followed this up with a detailed letter to the forum of the Northern governors in which he accused the Jonathan led government of genocide against the North. This rattled and unsettled the government.Repeated attempts to have Gov. Nyako withdraw his letter and apologize to the President failed. From the moment he wrote that letter, he became a marked man. The government savaged the governor through the media. This kangaroo impeachment is government’s way of punishing Nyako. The plan is to use the contents of the letter he wrote to the Northern Governors as a basis to try him for treasonable felony and eventually sentence him to life imprisonment. Nyako’s frank, if rough-edged, letter concerning the security situation apparently infuriated the monarch of Aso Villa who has become so arrogant as to believe no opposition against him is justified, thus he has the liberty to impose his brand of injustice to crush those who oppose him.
Before our eyes and under Jonathan’s watch, Nigeria gradually descends into fascism. We must all act now before it consumes us all.
In impeaching the Governor Nyako, the PDP used the constitution to abuse the constitution and the democracy it is supposed to enshrine. Governor Nyako’s impeachment must be seen completely as political move to punish his and deter others from leaving the PDP. It was a sanction imposed against political freedom and freedom of expression. It had little to do with alleged financial or other wrongdoing. A view of the alleged charges against him reveals that his purported wrongdoings revert to when he was still in the PDP, some dating back three years.
His actions were known to the House of Assembly then. While he still adhered to the PDP, there was no talk of misconduct. Upon leaving the PDP, his actions suddenly became the meat for impeachment. There is only one thing new which was not then present. The governor’s political party affiliation changed. In the PDP mind, his party change transmitted him from the list of those to be praised to the list of those to be persecuted.
He gave green light to this move and winked approvingly as his minions poured cash into the pockets of the pliable Adamawa State Assembly members who would do their bidding.
That the impeachment came on the same day that PDP governors and National Assembly members scurried to Aso Villa to endorse another term for their king is no accident. This was orchestrated to appear that all the wind is at the PDP sails and that the APC has been stalled by PDP strong-arm tactics. They want to create the impression that all is well and that the president rides high on popular acclaim. But there is a large crack in their wall.
Because they profit from and love the wreckage they have done to us, the president and his subordinates delude themselves into believing the average Nigerian also loves them for the damage they have caused. After over three months of avoiding the parents of the Chibok victims, Jonathan was shamed by the visit of a heroic teenager from another land, Pakistan’s Malala, into agreeing to meet them. However, after being shunned for months by the President’s cold indifference to their plight, the aggrieved parents refused to be party to the President’s slick public relations game. The parents shunned the man who would not meet with them when they wanted to meet him.
He only decided to meet them to gain publicity. The parents saw through his uncaring charade. They decided not to add themselves to the farce.
In the universe of his political hacks and courtiers, President Jonathan can do no wrong because his pockets are deep and seem never to run dry. For him, this is popularity and legitimacy. But if he truly wants to gauge how the people of Nigeria truly feel about him, he would seriously consider why the parents boycotted his meeting. These parents more accurately represent the mood of the nation than do all the processions of politicians who come to the Villa to lay themselves at the feet of their monarch.
He and the PDP contrived the removal of Governor Nyako from office. This is a temporary and costly victory for it reveals more and more the undemocratic heart of the man who rules over the nation. He now justifies his illegal and immoral acts by claiming that any show of dissent or opposition to him is the product of partisanship and thus not to be seriously considered. This is what all dictators tell themselves and he has become one. As such, he believes he can turn his back on the will and welfare of the people in order to attain his personal ambitions. Yet, while he may ignore the people, even he cannot make them disappear nor can he keep them for seeing him for what he is.
If he truly believes the false acclaim of his coterie and party dregs are genuine, let him stop these contrived attacks against opposition politicians. If he believes so much in himself, let the people decide things at the polls. He will not do this because he rightly fears Nigerians will do unto him what he has done unto them. When he calls unto the people, they will turn their backs to him in just reward for his sad and indifference misrule of this precious nation. Impeaching duly elected opposition politicians will not increase his popularity. These acts only undermine our democracy. The one party state and quasi-monarchy the PDP seeks are relics of the past and will not again stand in Nigeria.
Written by Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, Chieftain of the All Progressives Congress, APC
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