Wednesday, 10 August 2011 04:15

2015 Nigeria: A Primer for Igbo and Other Ambitious People

Written by 

2015 is not far away by any measurement. It is even shorter for all those who are eyeing Aso rock and much shorter for those who are making their first assault on the esteemed villa. If one has not started yet, one may be late already. The Igbo who have made a great deal of noise about 2015 are the most challenged. Here are the initial steps for everybody.

If you are a member of People's Democratic Party already and intends to run as one:

Start moving up the party ladder quickly. At this point you ougnigeria electionsht to be a state governor, senator, or a member of the House.

As a member of the legislature you should be heading a powerful committee. If not the chairman your influence should be well know to all. You must be having a high visibility outlook both inside the legislature and out side. You must be seen as a party stalwart when you oppose or support the party's position.

Do not always support the party and do not always oppose the party. A good position is 60% support and 40% opposed, in other words a moderate.

You should have a solid base in your constituency, in your state and start building bridges to other states and other politicians.

You must begin to show expert knowledge in Nigerian and foreign affairs and meeting and knowing foreign leaders especially Americans and Britons. You will be amazed at the influence foreigners have on our domestic elections.

If you are a governor you must be demonstrating improvement in all aspects of the state. Your before and after pictures of the state must be obvious to all in and out of state.

Cultivate the press and Diaspora web sites. Introduce yourself as a nationalist. Be bold.

Initiate and pass important legislatures and if you can have them named after you. Make sure that you are associated with legislations deemed important by Nigerians.

You must be ubiquitous. Something going on in the SW? Be there. In the NW? See you there. SS and SE and NE and NC? You must be there in support or in opposition. On Boko Harem, be an advocate for peace.

Show leadership everywhere. You must be a microphone grabber.

Modesty is a killer in politics.

If you belong to other parties:

Your challenge is much bigger and you work ethics must be higher than a PDP's candidate. PDP won the last election by a combination of factors of which the grassroots organization is perhaps the most significant factor. CPC or ACN could not have won because they did not have much presence in many places. They won in Anambra because they chose a high profile candidate. They will not always find a high profile candidate in all the zones. So for those who want to run on other parties' plat form here is your to-do list:

You must start by making your party a national party with presence in all local governments. Emphasis is on ALL.

You party is likely to be charged as a Yoruba, Hausa, or Igbo party, so you must make your party look and be seen as a national party. ACN cannot win many LGA's election in SE because they are perceived as Yoruba (the enemy) party. This image needs to be changed by electing people from all zones into their higher offices at the national level. Same for CPC, ANPP etc. These will not be token positions as Publicity Secretary but something that involves decision making position. It is perhaps the most challenging thing to do because it involves you win; I lose; not win-win. If I am elected the party President, Mr. Tinubu must give up the post. This could be very, very difficult. If Fashola appoints me commissioner for finance a Yoruba must give up the post, etc. ditto for CPC (from here on out I will use ACN as example and when ever ACN appears one can substitute APGA, CPC, ANPP, Labor, etc).

You must follow the PDP list above in addition to the short list that I provided just above for other parties. Remember that turning a tribal or regional party into a national party is a gigantic effort. But you must do it to have a chance.

You can also do it by forming alliances and even that must start right now.

If you do not belong to a party already join one and follow the guide lines above that apply to the party you joined. Your odds are not much better than 1:50.

If you are in your twenties and in college forget 2015 but your odds of becoming the Nigerian president is very, very bright. I like your odds better than a forty something that does not yet belong to a party. You have a clean slate and this is how to move to become the president a few years after you qualify age-wise:

If you are in engineering department, medical school, or pursuing accounting and finance degree forget about it for all you will learn is how to make dull speeches from duller professors. You will also not learn any leadership qualities. And will not have time, not even for dating. They will teach you conservative ideas, no radical thoughts. The truth is if we do not change today's ways tomorrow will be just like today.

But if you really want to be president find your way into law school or a liberal education, you will be better prepared.

Read Obama's dream of our fathers

Start organizing your peers by forming something like "Future Democrats" or Change makers of Nigeria". Make sure you do not get lured into any political party and that you are a thorn in every party leaders flesh. Oppose, oppose, oppose and in loud voices.

Spread your organization to all Nigerian campuses thus building a national image that would be very helpful in the future. Read up on the student movement in Nigeria in the 60's. People like Samuel Ifejika at UNILAG, Adaka Borrow and other student leaders were household names while in college. You must model yourself after them.

If you are music major you have even a better chance. Find all you can about Fella Ransom Kuti If he were to resurrect from the dead today, in a contest between him and his life time tormentor General Obasanjo, Kuti would win without campaigning and OBJ would spend billions which he has and his international image and job experience would not help any. So compose radical songs, defy the status quo and become a household name. Of course refrain from ekpeteshi and akamere, and Ogoni milk. Girls/boys with discretion.

Get your troops into local government elections especially at the university towns. Support fellow youths (if possible college students) in all local government elections mostly as unaffiliated candidates and help them win. You are more likely to excite the elections than the old hags, who would try to rig your candidates out. Use the courts if you have to. You will be smarter than the politicians. The politicians would be on your case and would speak to your Vice Chancellor, professors etc. Hold your ground.

Once out of college organize your graduates who were members of Change Makers of Nigeria in all the hamlets where they reside and visit campuses to strengthen the college chapters and start the ground works for a national party. Increase your LG election involvement and help those that have LG experience to go to state legislature and eventually to the government houses.

By now you have national recognition and a grass roots operation and you should be making international noise. You have proved your leadership credentials.

Start speaking of new visions for Nigeria and the world and before you know it you would be "His Excellency."

For the Igbo here is what has been said to you by some of the men of timber and caliber in Nigeria:

"In 2015, I will love to see that an Igbo man becomes president of this country so that it will fully put an end to the civil war matter and fully integrate them into Nigeria. After the civil war, they need to completely feel like Nigerians. ''If we must make every one believe that he belongs to this country, then it is after an Igbo man has been given the opportunity of being president in 2015 to complete the programme of fighting for the unity of this country by General Gowon." - General Ibrahim Badamasi Babangida.

"We cannot show the end of the civil war if the South East is not supported to produce the president in 2015. We have to show to the world that even after a war, anyone from anywhere, from any religion or tribe can aspire to become President of Nigeria and I will do all I can to see that this happens." - General Ibrahim Badamasi Babangida"

I am committed in laying solid foundation in four years and will make sure that the dream of Ndigbo of becoming president in 2015 is actualized." – General Muhammadu Buhari"

The little credit recorded by Obasonjo's govt. came from the Igbos in his cabinet.They've succeeded in every sphere of life... IBB

Why don't we allow them to govern this country" Gani Fawehimi

"Some 40 years after the civil war, it is about time that someone who is Igbo, one of Nigeria's three largest ethnic groups, became President of Nigeria. This will be the boldest way to put the civil war behind us....It is in writing, it was widely publicised, and I want to be held to it." Atiku Abubakar

Stand up for justice, equity and progress in Nigeria. Since our nation's independence, the office of the Head of State of Nigeria has been occupied thus number of years: NW: 15, NE: 6, NC: 18, SW: 11, SS: 1 (+4 in service), SE:??? Nigerians arise and correct this inequity! Injustice anywhere is injustice everywhere...Atiku Abubakar

All the above were quoted by John Okiyi Kalu

Saturday, 06 August 2011 10:25 in

The Igbo must dismiss these sentiments as orgasmic incantations said at the height of the actions that have no value a minute after the excitement. If any Igbo wants to be visited at Aso rock he/she (preferably a she) must go back to the start of this primer and follow the rules. If anyone is elected simply because he/she is Igbo such a person would be useless to Igbo and Nigeria and mankind.

The people who are following the primer above are:

Ken Nnamani: pros: national and international visibility as former senate president and opponent of GEJ presidency, OBJ's desire for tenor elongation; cons: out of office, strength in Enugu state

Governor Fashola: pros: good governance, minuscule international exposure; cons: perceived as a tribal leader, no exposure outside Lagos, fighting party leadership

Governor Peter Obi: pros: good governance, minuscule national exposure as vice president of national governor's committee and president SE governors; Cons: zero international experience, perceived as a tribal leader, strength in Anambra state.

I see no other names on my radar.

To start is right now. 

Read 1514 times
Benjamin Obiajulu Aduba

Benjamin Obiajulu Aduba  currently lives in Medfield, Massachusetts.