By George Fabrisimo
Once again, Nigerians are faced with the herculean task of choosing who heads and steers the ship of the affairs of the nation. In the context of our democracy, the choices at this stage are between the choices that the two parties make and this case, it is whoever the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) presents that faces incumbent president who seeking to return to office in 2019.
So, the PDP delegates are saddled with the responsibility of either getting it right by choosing the Right and the Best the party could offer at the moment or selfishly dash the hopes of the masses, who earnestly yearn and dream for a true change by selecting a mediocre for sentiments that would at best serve only the insatiable quest of a select few at the party level.
The scenario currently playing out points to the fact that some “powerful” individuals in the PDP are hell bent on thwarting the hopes and aspirations of the electorate by orchestrating an agenda that will make the PDP come off with a weaker candidate as its standard bearer.
I watched with utter disgust, how the Rivers State governor, Nyesom Wike, dared a whole party, which he is a member of by insisting the party must either play to his whims and caprices or be taught a bitter lesson.
The question is how did the party, PDP, got to that level? It is unheard of and unthinkable that a sitting governor would threaten a party that boasts of a Senate President, Deputy Senate President, Speaker of the House of Representatives, sitting Governors and former Presidents, Vice Presidents, Governors, Senate Presidents, Speakers, ministers and, hosts of other eminent Nigerians.
Even if the speculation that Wike is the main financier of the party is true, that is still not enough for him to disparage a political party of this size with its popularity and track of achievements. One is inclined to think that perhaps, the reason why Gov. Wike is taking the issue of the venue for the presidential primary personal, is because he’s neck deep into the agenda or plot to field a weaker candidate against the All Progressives Congress, APC candidate, President Muhammadu Buhari as a bargaining chip for him to remain the governor of Rivers State beyond May 2019.
Come to think of it, in Rivers State today, under Gov. Wike’s watch has sold out PDP’s stronghold to the APC. Two of the three Senators from the state are in APC already and the remaining one; is shaky. So, it suits Gov. Wike to trade the prospect of the party, PDP, under which he’s a governor with APC in order to maintain the seat that he currently occupies.
By the way, isn’t it a travesty for Gov. Wike to insult the intelligence of the people he governs who have stated unequivocally that it is either restructuring or nothing? I was shocked with the kind of comment Wike made about restructuring. He sounded as though, he belonged to the APC, who have maintained a clear opposition to the issue of restructuring.
As delegates of the PDP head to the convention ground wherever it takes place, they must bear it in mind that the enemy the party is faced with is bigger than an individual or group of persons of parochial like minds. Nigerians place a huge responsibility on the shoulders of the delegates of PDP, who are today in a position to decide where the country heads.
As such, they must resist any temptation of monetary inducements and an entreaty to do what their consciences feel is right for the country and the party in a week’s time.
The world is watching us as a people. We have for over 3 years plus cried and wailed and waited for this time to present itself to us again; so as to atone for our mistakes and miscalculation of 2015, when we had limited choices.
In 2019, the PDP must give Nigeria and Nigerians the right choice of candidate across board especially at the presidential level. Nigerians are tired of lamenting the inappropriate choices they make at the polls. They deserve to be given opportunity to choose between a competent presidential material, who would not only work the talk but be treated and accorded respect in the comity of nations and a candidate whose low performance in terms of governance has made the country the butt of all jokes.
Indeed, Nigerians would not forgive the PDP in a long time to come should they scuttle the valid expectation of the people.
George Fabrisimo, an IT expert writes from Lagos