Nyesom Wike, Rivers governor, seems morphing from the wike wike brag-fest, in his unending battle with Chubuike Amaechi, his predecessor; to a seasoned “curser”, perhaps in office but not yet in power?
Or how else does Hardball interpret this headline in the August 17 issue of The Nation: “Wike: God’ll disgrace those plotting against my government? O, you think it is rather a negative prayer than a positive curse? Maybe! But to what ends?
Mr. Wike was reported to have prayed the prayer or cursed the curse at a crusade, in Port Harcourt, of the Lord’s Chosen Renewal Charismatic Ministry, at which the ministry’s general overseer, Pastor Lazarus Muoka, was tending to the flock.
An ecstatic Wike went on memory lane, underscoring his faith in the religious body with yet another curse — or well, something close to it. It was at a previous Chosen crusade, he recalled with glee, that he volunteered that if indeed he was a cultist, he should not win the election. So, because he won the election, the rumours that alleged he was one was false, halleluiah! How about that for circular (il)logic!
And the gubernatorial triumphalism, above the din of brethren’s roar! “The way the God of the Lord’s Chosen did it on April 11, that is how he will do it again!” Amen? Hardball would imagine. Aaammeeeeeen!!! The flock would thunder, putting the gubernatorial child of God in the true and proper mood for his negative prayer or positive curse.
“Those who are fighting and plotting to truncate the lifespan of the mandate freely given to me by the people of Rivers State,” there you have it, “will be disgraced by the God of the Lord’s Chosen”! Hmmnnn, might that peculiar God, customised to “the Lord’s Chosen”, be partisan too? And a Wike supporter to boot? Ah!
Trust politicians to steal one on their opponents. But trust clerics too to be savour projecting influence, no matter how seeming inappropriate. It is rare bragging rights in Nigerian Pentecostalism, in the daily combat for market share to win souls! It is the gripping daily drama that makes Nigeria such a never-boring prospect for the media person.
But more seriously, beyond the drama: would any conscientious human, let alone of God, countenance the reported brutal harvest of lives and limbs, the virtual wiping out of whole families, the forced exile of many more, in the macabre show that passed for the Rivers elections? Of course, Hardball is in no place to judge, which of the parties in the election disputes is right or wrong. The election tribunals are doing that; and soon enough, they should be out with their verdict.
But from media reports during the elections, how can anyone so casually link God’s name — and with wanton triumphalism to boot! — to what the media and election monitors painted as a clear debacle?
Given the ugly turn of events during the Rivers election, beyond the winners and the vanquished, what the Rivers people need is closure: the victims’ right to go back to their shattered lives; and a responsible government’s duty to be sensitive to that right.
That was what Mr Wike tragically missed at his crusade triumphalism; and the collateral damage he inflicted on a perfectly legitimate crusade, even if the cleric himself should have impressed on the governor the imperative for tact, at such a delicate juncture.
By the way, a parting shot: why does Governor Wike curse so throatily — to underscore that, until the tribunals rule, he is just in office but far away from power? Ah!