Obasanjo/Atiku: Deconstructing The Dance Of Witches

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So much has been written about what Osun State Governor, Oyinlola, described as the dance of witches: the much vaunted meeting between Obasanjo and Atiku. The discerning observer will notice that it took place against the backdrop of two political presences: potentials for political re-alliances and the 2011 elections. Early this week, Presidential Spokesperson, Olusegun Adeniyi assured that President Umaru Yar’adua was not fazed by the meeting between the former ruling/feuding duo. But in politics-speak, it means the president IS VERY WORRIED! In these matters, denial IS confirmation.

When it also became known that their men Friday, Boni Haruna and Nnamdi ‘Andy’ Uba helped to broker the meeting along with Oyinlola, the permutations became even more interesting! Remember that Oyinlola is a Babangida boy but he also became an Obasanjo sidekick, to survive in the politics of 2003-2007. Today, they are worried about life in 2011, afraid to be political orphans or lepers. Why? This is because Umaru Yar’adua is too beholden to James Ibori and the group controlling the party apparatus and using the Governors’ Forum as a veritable platform of visibility. They are not too sure they can breach that fortress, if the dance of the witches is not conjured! The national surprise generated was part of a well-scripted political move.


The icing on the cake was the choreographed appearance at Umaru’s daughter’s wedding in Katsina. Obasanjo, Atiku and Babangida rode in the same vehicle to the wedding venue. But what was not said, in the spirit of politics, was that under the well-starched Babanriga, each was holding an over-sharpened dagger and sizing up the other for the softest spot to stick the long dagger, when the opportune time appears. And beneath the smiles were curses and swears! Anybody who believed Segun Adeniyi that all was well, failed to notice the “COME BACK kid”, Chief Tony ‘Mister Fix It’ Anenih. The political dinosaur was resurrected for a purpose. He has been handed the lucre of NPA, as part of an agenda: to secure a war chest; reconstruct the myth; dispense largess and commence strategizing for the 2011 elections! Umaru Yar’adua is telling the dancing witches that ‘there is no vacancy in Aso Villa’ come 2011, and what better way to say it than through the rehabilitation of the fixer-in-chief, Anenih?

If you have forgotten, Anenih fell out with Atiku when the bitter fight ensued between Atiku and his OGA, Obasanjo. Anenih does not side with the weak; he ties the feet and hands of the weak to ensure a proper pummeling by the mighty and most powerful, in a political manner of speaking. That is the way he survives. Unfortunately, he was aggrieved, when Obasanjo entrusted the huge war chest of the Third Term Agenda to a certain Senator Ibrahim Mantu (Is he still in circulation?); Anenih was therefore lukewarm in his support for the Agenda. Its failure sealed his fate with Obasanjo, who ridiculed him, by taking away his power base as Chairman of the PDP’s BOT. He was also demystified in the politics of the PDP in Edo State, and was left to lick his wounds until Yar’adua decided to extend his shelf life to play a new/old role in the 2011 warfare.

Most commentaries of the past week have stayed at the level of surprise, self-righteous indignation and anger, that Atiku would forget the humiliation visited upon him by Obasanjo not too long ago, to acquiesce in the new round of events. These commentators have forgotten the lesson which Machiavelli taught a long time ago, that in the game of power, sentiments, morality and even justice don’t count; only interest! The Chinese curse will catch everybody now: we are living in interesting times!

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