Obasanjo and the pdp crisis: Solution and problem return to source

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ONE of the most abiding imageries out of Nigeria in the past week, is that of former president Olusegun Obasanjo, leading party elders in search of reconciliation of the two factions of the PDP: old and new. In truth, the whole thing is an elaborate burlesque assured to take the “Dead-on-Arrival”, DoA, ride to the mortuary of politics. How could Obasanjo lead the search for reconciliation when he is an interested party?

Didn’t the old man walk out in utter frustration as the BOT Chairman? Ok then, whose sidekicks systematically got kicked out (no pun intended!) from various party positions at the centre and in the South West? Isn’t Obasanjo the same person feeling less-than-appreciated by President Jonathan, despite being the vehicle of his emergence in the first place?

If we can ask these questions from the sidelines of politics, why can’t or won’t those locked to the charade within the two warring factions? Maybe there are peculiarities to the PDP way of getting things done that we might not fully and comprehensively understand. Afterall, wasn’t it said severally, that whatever happens under the leaky umbrella of the PDP, is stricto sensu, a family affair?

It was the Roman statesman, Pliny the Elder, who once remarked that something new always issues forth from Africa. PDP’s politics must stand out tall as one of the strangest phenomena out of our beloved continent. In truth, PDP started out with admirable ideals which transmogrified into a monstrosity, starting under Obasanjo. The party gradually saw the withering of its nation-building credentials and the transition into a platform which covets and will do everything to stay atop the float of power and access to lucre.

For a long time, the glue that held members on a tight leash, was that access to power and the tremendous opportunity to be able, in the long run, stay in proximity to inordinate affluence and influence. Unfortunately, Obasanjo contributed a lot to reaching the point of impasse he has positioned to now break. It is even more poignant, that these reconciliatory steps are coming at the point of hardening of positions between the two factions.

Toga of peacemaker

Yet I get a feeling that even President Goodluck Jonathan is not taken in by the charade of Obasanjo wearing the toga of peacemaker. Old man EK Clark, the ultimate interpreter of presidential mindset and chief spokesperson for Jonathan has said that much. Even the President was alleged to have directly accused Obasanjo and then walked out of the talks!

We might try an imaginary peek into the Obasanjo mindset as he prepared to lead the elders at the first meeting of the factions. Locked inside his bathroom, our former president chuckles at the naivety of those who employed him to find peace and reconciliation when he hurts so badly that he was systematically de-robed by Jonathan and his own faction of the party.

Isn’t the crisis an expression of vengeance? And soon as it broke, wasn’t Obasanjo at the Aso Villa in the company of Beninois President, Boni Yayi? Those able to interpret portents must have shivered with cold sweat running down their backs!

Obasanjo was at Dr. Chuba Okadigbo’s residence; he danced with the late Senate President’s wife on the eve of the termination of his tenure. And why did they forget the infamous meal of pounded yam at Chief Audu Ogbeh’s house on the eve of his forced removal from office as PDP Chairman? There is an eerie pattern to the Obasanjo way of doing things that is not too difficult to put together, rather like pieces in a jigsaw puzzle.

When they appointed Obasanjo to look for reconciliation, the denizens of the PDP took solution and problem back to source. It is rather like the famous story in the proverb of the man who hid a piece of meat in the mouth and yet got the onerous responsibility to lead a search for its whereabouts!

We can only wish them well in their search, knowing they have embarked on a futile effort!

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