There has been a torrent of commentaries on the botched and rescheduled APC primary election in Ekiti State with quite a few hitting the bull’s eyes. It is an eyesore and quite regrettable that a party that prides itself as a progressive assemblage will continue to squander its goodwill with continued and amazing rapidity. Surely, this was strange occurrence happening within a party that was cobbled together to torpedo the PDP in the last general elections is increasingly distracted. The party’s catalogue of misdeed keeps growing just like that of the former ruling party with reckless abandon.
The APC looks more like a joke and a shadow of what it pretended to be only less than four years ago, that I wonder. The joke started with the way and manner it handled the election into principal officers of the National Assembly and ever since then it has been one wrong step after the other; the list appears endless.
The contemporary issue, especially about the shadow election in Ekiti, to be candid, was a fiasco foretold and has exposed the party as badly fractured from within based on irreconcilable differences, yet they openly boast of wining in the forth-coming election. The APC remains me of everything the PDP was when at the helms of affairs.
In an epic book, ‘The Ideas That Conquered the World, author and one of American leading foreign policy thinker and scholar, argues that three ideas dominate the world today: peace as the preferred basis for relations between and among different countries, democracy as the optimal way to organize political life, and free markets as the indispensable vehicle for the creation of wealth.
This assertion has gained a near universal currency in the present international system with some drawbacks, especially in the Africa, where political party system that should anchor such ideologies are either non-existent or on the decline. The APC as a political platform reaffirms the notion that party politics system is weak and a reverse gear.
The intent of shadow election is designed to strengthen and bear credibility to the electoral process but it is likely that such is not in the radar of politicians in Nigeria. I have come to this conclusion based on the recently re-scheduled primary election of the All Progressive Congress in Ekiti, where the show of shame is a pointer, perhaps a need to rework our political party system, political ideas and contestation for power which requires a ‘class of interest’, it is expected within the bounds of decency and decorum for democracy to flourish.
What played out in Ekiti during the said shadow election is a continuation of power politics within the party in the countdown to 2019, with vested interest daring themselves, of a truth some are just satisfied with the ambition of stopping a bouncing back of the immediate past governor, Kayode Fayemi.
The calculation is that by stopping Fayemi then their chances can be bolstered and another stream of thinking is that whoever is chosen, anointed, selected or elected in the primaries will eventually emerge victorious in the governorship election. This assumption is at the base of the desperation fuelling the reactions of supposed ‘mighty contenders’.
It is simply outlandish and most unfortunate that a simple affair such as the conduct of a shadow election will make the party descend to an all time low. Here we are talking about self-professing ‘progressives’ with a putrid self-righteousness that stinks to the heavens.
The party is filled to the brim, or more appropriately has a band of ego-maniacs who do not give a damn what becomes of the party in their overdrive. It is this self-centeredness that has put the party into this inglorious state, a process that started shortly to its electoral loss in 2014.
It is this delusion that is fuelling desperation reactions that appears like the last kicks of a dying horse which has snowballed into peddling of cheap lies, counter-accusations, deepening conspiracies, gang-up, the threat of the use of violence and utter lack of consensus. Unknown to the contenders and their army of supporters, the door to the stable of another colossal defeat is open with the multiple cracks widening, the horse has bolted away and defeat is imminent if the party remains on this trajectory. This condition is worsening by lies spiced with self denial.
Not many of them reckoned with the fact that Fayemi would trump them in the contest. With defeat looming before their eyes, they have resorted to all manner of indignities to cover their shameful defeat but that is not even the ultimate issue before the party, a party divided from within would require a miracle for it not to be completed walloped at the polls by the people’s revolt which view them with disdain and derision further attenuated by the botched primaries. It is for a given that Fayose’s PDP will do better that the APC in Ekiti.
This postulation sounds heretic to the APC members in Ekiti, yet they are yet to retrace their steps from the use of propaganda in a manner that the German master, Goebbels will shrink in horror. They bandy words about town on how the Federal Might, a pure myth in Ekiti will be used to compel a win even if defeat occurs. How that would happen is yet to be seen but if the history of electoral contest in Ekiti is anything to go by, it is highly improbable. The state is a swing state by tradition.
As far back as 1999 when the entire south-west voted for Alliance of Democracy, (AD), in Ekiti, there was a Senator elected under the banner of the PDP. In 2003, the PDP defeated incumbent governor Niyi Adebayo and the same feat was repeated in 2014. On both occasion, Fayose led the charge.
I wonder how a divided APC will match Fayose whose taunting of the APC by promising to loan Governor Ifenayi Okowa of Delta who conducted a free, fair, credible and transparent primary is not loss on the people. The talk of the town is how the APC is unravelling with the speed of light. The thinking is if the APC can assault a fundamental ethos of democracy with wantonness then is it not fit and proper to excuse their charade, fraud and impolitic conduct by rejecting them at the polls? The truth must be told about this party brimming with lots of people who nurse a sense of misplaced entitlement and nothing short of their emergence would suffice.
The APC is populated with thinkers and undeniable intellectual heavyweights but with blur vision. They can’t see beyond their nose because of self-interest and reckless assumptions.
Rotimi Opeyeoluwa teaches in the department of International Relations and Diplomacy, Afe Babalola University, Ado-Ekiti.