November 24, 2020

AfricaTopForum

AfricaTopForum – News Around Africa

Who is Umahi fooling?

3 min read

 

Why do Nigerian politicians take the electorates for granted so much?

It’s bad enough that many of them are not as honourable as they claim, but they insult our intelligence when they offer unjustifiable excuses for their dishonorable acts.

For long, speculations have been rife about the Ebonyi State Governor, Dave Umahi decamping to the All Progressives Congress (APC) from the People’s Democratic Party ( PDP) on  which platform he was elected for the first and second term.

Despite earlier denials, he eventually did and claimed that it was due to the marginalisation of the Igbos in the PDP regarding allocation of political offices. He also described his Rivers State counterpart, Nyesom Wike, as a dictator whose actions are ‘destroying’ the PDP, adding that APC does more consultation unlike the ‘remote-controlled’ PDP National working committee.

Apparently due to its desperation to have a foothold in the South East, APC has been full of praise for Umahi justifying the kind of moves it had condemned in the past when its members decamped to PDP.

President Muhammadu Buhari described the defection “as a bold move driven purely by principle rather than opportunistic motives or coercion.”

I’m not sure what kind of principle the president was referring to. What kind of principle makes a sitting governor abandon his party on the excuse of alleged marginalisation and dictatorship by another governor who is his contemporary?

Instead of staying back and insisting on the right thing to be done in the party if indeed it is true that his people are being marginalised, Umahi has opted for the easy opportunistic way out like some have done before.

He is not the first top political officeholder to decamp and give whatever reason they want to use to rationalise their decision. We are used to desperate politicians who cannot stay back in their party to allow democratic process of resolving whatever disagreement occurs jumping ship and abandoning the electorates who voted for them.

As shameless as our politicians are, we have had instances where some decamped from one party to the other and later returned to their former party.

When they first leave, usually due to not having their ways in terms of getting the positions they desire, they call their party all kinds of bad names. When they fail to get what they want in the party they decamped to, they return to their vomit and tell us another story.

While it is within the rights of any Nigerian to decide whichever party he or she wants to belong to, the situation where political officeholders decamp at the slightest excuse is not good enough. By their actions, they have confirmed that there is really no difference in the parties beyond the names they are called.

Ideally, when one party loses an election, what should happen is that the members should remain loyal to their parties and work on winning the next elections. They should hold the party in power accountable to whatever promise won them the election.

There is definitely more to Governor Umahi’s defection and at the right time he will be exposed like others before him for their selfish desires at the expense of those who voted against the party he has now opted for.