Come February 16, 2019, Muhammadu Buhari, Nigeria’s sitting president, will be faced with two choices; either to remain in Aso Rock as Nigeria’s president for the next four years or, to go back to Daura in Katsina State, and begin to tend to his herds henceforth. Whatever eventually becomes of the president’s lot, what makes the coming General Elections uniquely different is that it has assumed a larger than life posture, threatening to tear asunder the fragile socio-political unity of the country.
For instance, the extant political dynamics and imperatives have changed, so also are the attitudinal dispositions of the ‘principalities’ or, political gladiators struggling for the soul of Nigeria. The contending individuals for public office have become more desperate, intolerant, and even deadly; exhibiting the zero-sum game attributes more than any other time compared within the Nigeria political history and elections antecedents!
Principally, the battle ahead is between the Biblical “narrow road” and the “broad road”; between popular protests and fabulous narratives. Assuredly, it is between preference for national integrity and lust for “national cake”. Coincidentally, this is the first time the country is turning out the largest number of presidential candidates who, in any case, are already seeing themselves as presidents-in-waiting. In a country where, even a councillor’s spouse is reverenced as ‘Her Excellency’, one can now see why Nigeria, like the prodigal son in search of his ancestral parentage, has since independence been struggling to establish an enduring democracy and build strong public institutions. What even makes the battle rather complex is that the current chief tenant of Aso Villa is not prepared to tempt the way of his predecessor while his major opponent is already deeply immersed in dangerous schemes which, if not professionally curtailed, are capable of capturing power at all costs. After all, this the last opportunity that fate can offer him. This is not to say that other pests and rodents who are also interested in Buhari’s job will want to go down without putting up a fight.
Well, it is one thing to enter into the New Year with lofty promises and hope! Nonetheless, it is another thing to ensure the delivery of the goods of governance through a strong foundation, workable public institutions, and prayers, especially, at a difficult time like this. As a starting point therefore, it’s time we commended Nigeria into God’s hands, especially, at this auspicious time of her history.
“Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord, the people He has chosen as His inheritance.” As Nigerians will be making crucial decisions that will affect the entire country this year, we beseech Thee, dear Father; restore unto us the healing that our country needs and deliver us from any relationship that is bound to separate us from our destiny. Speak into our lives that every obstacle planted on our path be removed. Do not let the wind of peace blowing across the globe through which erstwhile enemies are striking inspiring chords of a new world order pass us by without reconciling feuding brothers.