When weight and worth wane to worthlessness
By Bala Ibrahim
I am confused, completely confused, with the stance of the trio of the former Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Babachir Lawal and the former Speaker of the House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara, with regards their loyalty to the APC, and the perceived position of Christianity in the constitution of the party. From their recent actions, it looks like Babachir and Dogara are trying to push religion into politics or vice versa, for their own selfish interests. This is to the detriment of the collective interests of Nigerians and Nigeria.
About 24 hours after Babachir Lawal and Dogara, two strong members of the ruling APC, spearheaded a northern Christian congregation to announce opposition to the Muslim-Muslim ticket arrangement of their party, the duo moved a step further in another attempt to disturb the peace and harmony existing in the party, by visiting a strong governor of the opposition PDP, in the person of Ezenwo Nyesom Wike of Rivers state. Wike is not only in the opposition, but a Christian. This makes the visit suspicious because it is seen as an attempt to whip up religious sentiment, at a time when Nigeria is yearning for a leadership that would bring about development that is free from any religious sentiments.
Though Babachir and Dogara did not disclose to the press, the exact mission of their visit to Wike, and their body language in recent days, are suggestive of an attempt to introduce dissension in the body politic of Nigeria.
For the two, who are Christians from tribes that belong to the northern minority, to commence hobnobbing with a strong Christian in the opposition party, from another block, at a time like now, is nothing but planning something ill-omened.
In the scheme of things in Nigeria’s politics today, Babachir and Dogara are gradually losing relevance, in fact, their weight and worth, are waning towards worthlessness, which is why, in an effort to reclaim relevance, the two are trying to inject religious sentiment into the already fractured politics of the country.
It is an open secret that Nigeria is at a critical stage, where the sentiments that have divided the country need to be abandoned so that the nation can get on a better platform for development. Patriots have said times without number, that, as a people, Nigerians are born into tribes before religion was introduced, making the promotion of religion awkward and detrimental to nation-building.
Babachir and Dogara are simply trying to take advantage of the heightened hullabaloo about the Muslim/Muslim ticket arrangement between Tinubu and Shettima, to unnecessarily politicize the issue in a misplaced manner. There is no gain in saying that in their innermost conscience, the two know that what Nigeria needs is competence, combined with the ability to deliver, and not the mediocracy of such religious sentiment. And I am sure, had Tinubu picked either of the two as his running mate, all this brouhaha would not arise.
“We came to visit our brother. He is our brother and every now and then the bible enjoins you to visit one another. That’s what we have just done”.- Babachir.
“Everyone agrees with us that Governor Wike is one of those indispensable political leaders. And for us, it is a search to build an all-inclusive Nigeria. So we feel that as part of the agenda-setting, we should meet with him and that’s the reason why we are here”.- Dogara.
It is extremely laughable that Babachir and Dogara have arrogated to themselves, the position of being proficient, in setting the political agenda of Nigeria. It is an impossible task, being undertaken by the people, whose weight and worth, are waning towards worthlessness.
Using religious sentiment to capture power, touches negatively on the sensibilities of the people, and has the potential of achieving the opposite of the desired effect. In politics, which is expected to bank on broad base support of the people, such a move can be counterproductive.
Babachir and Dogara, whose weights and worth, are waning towards worthlessness, need to know that the intrigues of politics are better resolved through dialogue and diplomacy, and not through grandstanding, by buying public opinion, via religious sentiment.
It would be surprising, therefore, if Babachir and Dogara’s next port of call is not the residence of Peter Obi, the man whom Deji Adeyanju, has rightly described as, acting like someone seeking to become the next President of CAN in Nigeria.
Such happens mostly, when weight and worth, wane to worthlessness.