Kwara and APC’s Desperate Power Grab, in Whose Interest? – By Olusegun Sholyment Olushola 

In the Christian Bible, in the book of Proverbs Chapter 16, verse 18, it is said that “Pride goes before destruction.” In modern times, we have paraphrased this bible passage into “Pride goes before a fall.” I began this piece with the aforementioned biblical reference in order to emphasise the current on-goings in Nigeria, specifically, in the state of Kwara, where the All Progressives Congress (APC), led and funded by Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, are trying desperately to unseat the ruling People’s Democratic Party (PDP), which is led by Senate President, Dr. Abubakar Bukola Saraki.

APC’s antics in Kwara, which have included violent attacks on supporters of the PDP and Saraki, can be described as a ‘political annexation campaign’ — one that is aimed at subjugating the people of Kwara State to the ruler of Lagos, namely, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu.

A few days ago, the Sokoto State Governor, Aminu Tambuwal, shed light on Tinubu’s obsession with destroying Saraki and annexing Kwara State, when he emphasised that the primary disagreement that the former Lagos State Governor has with the Senate President, is that the Senate President spoke out against the proposed Muslim-Muslim ticket, that would have paired the APC Presidential candidate, Muhammadu Buhari, with Tinubu.

Since then, Tinubu, through his foot soldiers in Kwara and his surreptitious manipulation of institutions of the federal government, have worked hard to disparage Saraki; destroy Saraki; discredit Saraki; and of course, dismantle the Saraki political dynasty in Kwara State.

With the 2019 elections just around the corner, Tinubu, through Lai Mohammed, has presented Kwarans with a gubernatorial candidate who has zero experience in affairs of governance, Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq — simply because they want to use him as a pawn on the political chessboard, much like in the manner that the secret cabal behind President Muhammadu Buhari, are the ones forcing him to run for office.

Kwarans must understand that the political annexation to the Lords of Lagos, will disrupt the democratic dividends that the State has thus far enjoyed under Saraki’s Senate Presidency — despite the fact that the federal government has shortchanged the state in political appointments since 2015.

Although, many Kwarans see and understand the moves being made by Lai Mohammed, Tinubu, Abdulrahman and the other APC members, others seem to be enthralled by the “possibility of new possibilities,” however, they should learn from other states.

In the 2018 Osun State elections, in the first round of voting, the people of the State delivered a clear message to Bourdillon, when it rejected the APC candidate, Oyetola, who was losing in the polls before the second round of voting that was marred with numerous irregularities. This is because, due to the feudal system employed by APC leaders in Lagos, whereby states that are annexed contribute billions to the ‘upkeep’ of the APC leaders in Lagos, Osun State was unable to pay salaries of its civil servants and teachers for many months.

With rampant rumours in the air that the APC gubernatorial candidate has agreed to a monthly ‘service charge’ of at least N5billion monthly when he assumes office — strictly in order to gain the support of his masters in Lagos, the people of Kwara State stand to become the biggest losers in this high-stakes political horse-trading that has the internally generated revenue of Kwara being offered to greedy individuals in Lagos.

As things stand, the people of Kwara State must begin to enlighten each other and encourage each other to vote for the PDP and its gubernatorial candidate, who has pledged to use Kwara’s money for the development of Kwara.

Although the battle of supremacy in Kwara will be conducted twice in the next few weeks — first at the presidential and national assembly elections, then at the governorship elections in March — it remains clear that Tinubu’s struggle to conquer Kwara might be his greatest mistake and miscalculation yet. This is because, from the resistance that the people of Kwara have been putting up with the ‘O Tun Ya’ movement, one this is clear: Tinubu’s greed may end up costing him more than he or the APC knows. This is because, Kwarans have shown that they are ready, willing and able to fight against any form of development that truncates their independence and auctions it out for the support of Lagos.

As things shape up over the next few days, Kwarans must choose between standing up for the PDP and the Saraki dynasty that always put them first; or the APC and its insatiable leaders who simply want access to the limited resources of the state. Which ever way they choose to vote, one thing remains clear: the greed of those who have, but want more — for the sake of ‘just having more’ — will always come before their downfall.

I rest my case.



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