The more things change, the more they remain the same – Muyiwa Adetiba


There was a hit song in the 80s that had a refrain which went something like this: ‘Now that we’ve found love what are we going to do with it?’ This song came to my consciousness each time the APC members went from one comedy of error to another in their quest to acquire or consolidate power. Substitute the word love with power and you will have the APC scenario which has found power but is fumbling so terribly with it.

Many people predicted this unfortunately. When I wrote the article: ‘The factors against Buhari’, an old friend somehow found my number and called to plead passionately about the dangers of a Buhari presidency. He is an Igbo man who has lived all his life in Lagos and even has a Yoruba name. His call amongst the many that came in the wake of the article comes to mind today because his was different from the common, if unfounded fears, of the Islamisation of Nigeria, or Buhari being surrounded by greedy crooks who would not allow him to clean the stable.

He predicted a deadly power game.According to him, the North, which had been out of power for 16 years would not share power, but would quickly move to seize and consolidate power. The Vice President, for all his intellect, would be consigned to paper work and researches. He would be cut off from real governance.

This could lead to the consternation of the Yoruba people who made the Buhari presidency possible and more acceptable. Tinubu, whose tireless efforts made the formation of APC possible, would find the whittling of his power unacceptable. A deadly inner struggle would ensue which would break the party and could break the country. I found his prediction the stuff of a bestseller movie and told him gently that he was simply worried by the fear of the unknown. But this ruthless, and unnecessary show of power tussle will surely set some people thinking and some people smirking.

Chief of those who would be smirking would be Dr DoyinOkupe, my old roommate and friend who had predicted the implosion and collapse of APC. Recent ‘I told you so’ comments from him show he has found his voice again thanks to the naked lust for power and control by the APC chieftains.

I have read many comments on the

ongoing debacle. Many of them unfortunately betray old allegiances. Many talk about cutting one man to size as if Tinubu for all his clout could have been acting alone. Many talk about the inordinate ambition of Saraki as if Saraki, for all his so called ambition could have achieved all this alone. The way I see it, this macabre dance is being orchestrated by group interests—call it ACN or New PDP or whatever. Buhari, for all his seeming indifference, might actually be waiting for these groups to decimate and weaken each other.

He is, afterall, a military Officer; well trained in tactics and strategies. If he succeeds in bringing order to this chaotic party, then he would have achieved where the others failed and would become, if anybody had a doubt, the undisputed leader of the party. Now, I will be the first to admit that success is as difficult to manage as failure and wealth is as difficult to manage as poverty. I have seen it in companies, I have seen it in marriages. And this, is a marriage of some sort.

And one way people survive the extremes of poverty and wealth in marriages is for them to focus more on goals than personalities because if the survival of the marriage means a lot to you then you are likely to make sacrifices and overlook personal failings.

APC is not yet a seamless party. It is an amalgamation of interest groups which pulled resources together to capture power. Its survival therefore depends on the ability of the leaders to look at the bigger picture. This suggests to me that they need the umbrella of change that the APC campaign slogan represents than they realise.

Many of them are so tainted by their past that APC represents a new opportunity to revive their careers. It is on record that many of the National Assembly members got there as a result of the sweeping changes that APC represented. For example, I still don’t know who the House of Representative member from my area is. Yet I voted for him under the umbrella of change. Am I the only one? So for him to say he is now independent of the party is a bit disingenuous. Secondly, Nigerians voted PDP out at the last elections because they wanted a change.

They were tired of 16 years of corruption and confusion. And if APC turns out to be a poor change, then they should be prepared to quit the stage in 2019. Nobody voted for a government of national unity. We want to hold only APC accountable for good or ill. So anybody who brings PDP into governance through the back door has not done APC or the country a favour.

What happens if the presidency decides to move against the economic interests of top leaders of the PDP who have enriched themselves through treasury looting? Will a presiding Deputy Senate President who may or may not be personally affected push it? And will a divided APC body be able to pass it? Will even the Senate President who until a few months ago was a top PDP leader push it?

Nigerians hoped for a change. Nigerians voted for a change. What is happening now is more of the same; leaders who are fighting over the spoils of victory. APC needs to get its act together and start delivering on its promises of change. Otherwise 2019 is round the corner. And there will be no spoils to share.

Meanwhile, Senator Saraki and his group should find their way back under the APC umbrella to shield themselves against the gathering storm. To do otherwise is to make themselves vulnerable. Or is it already a torn umbrella?

Oops. I used the word umbrella five times in relation to APC. Hmmn, the more things change, the more it seems, they remain the same.


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