Before things will go worse, Buhari has to put his house together, before Tinubu tears it beyond repair. Whereas the All Progressives Congress, APC, derisively described as Armoured Personnel Carrier when it was launched in 2013, may be about to turn the gun barrel on itself with the multi-pronged crisis that has hit the ruling party, Nigerians are still watching and waiting. Most of what is happening in the party today was predicted long ago. The reason for the possible impending implosion of the APC – except wise counsel prevails – can be located in the inexplicable, yet manifest serial folly, grounded in self-centredness, of the average Nigerian politician. From the high wire politicking that greeted the emergence of the leadership of Nigeria’s Senate and House of Representatives, to the skewed appointments made by President Muhammadu Buhari, while not leaving out the visceral scheming by some mentees against their mentors, it was only a matter of when, and not if, there would be a shift in the tectonic plates that serve as the core of the APC.
The latest in this unfolding theatre of the absurd is the barefaced foolery by the leadership of the party regarding the predictable but shameful governorship primary in Ondo State. Whereas the leadership was expected to be honourable, disciplined and detached in its handling of the plethora of petitions and public angst against the exercise, what it did was to throw sand in the face of President Buhari and his avowed anti-corruption crusade. That the shambolic and fraudulent primary was endorsed by the APC represents a poignant reminder that the party’s politicians are no different from the buccaneers of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, which it swept away. This report will show why the tango between APC National Leader, Ashiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, and National Chairman, John Odigie Oyegun, does not bode well for the party, Nigeria’s democracy as well as what may eventually turn out to be the greatest scam to be visited on Nigeria’s voting public, sans the men of integrity, in today’s APC.
The organisers of Muhammadu Buhari’s book launch thought they were being smart. But they were neither smart nor wise because they underestimated the quantum of angst. Therefore, in their estimation, they hoped, rather unintelligently, that a sitting arrangement that put Tinubu’s seat next to Oyegun’s would thaw the icy relationship between both men. What happened, instead, was that the deep-rooted animosity was exposed for the world to witness – throughout the event, Tinubu neither shared in any banter nor as much as accorded Oyegun any recognition; this, after both men had a handshake before taking their seats. Indeed, Tinubu, just a week earlier, had lampooned Oyegun for his handling of the appeals against the Ondo State governorship primary of the party, which has been described by many as a joke and a travesty of gargantuan proportions. Oyegun responded after some nine days, telling Tinubu that it is beneath him to pronounce his sacking as National Chairman of the party, describing Tinubu’s bribery allegation as baseless and reckless. . Worse still, APC’s change mantra, on account of the Ondo affair, was dragged in the mud, eliciting comments that suggested that the affliction of lack of internal democracy that saw to the exit of the PDP from power is already sitting pretty in APC.