The cliche “it is not over until it is over” very popular talk in the beautiful round leather game of football.
The game of football is full of dramatics and histrionics and surprise is one huge factor.
The above are also true of politics.
Those who know will easily agree that twenty four hours is a long time in politics.
Politics is characterised by concentric rings of conspiracies.
Hence, you do not count your chicks before they are hatched in politics as anything can happen.
No man is an Island…certainly, not in the roguish business of politics.
Politics is a business of “let us go”, sort of mass movement…the more the merrier.
Power play politicians are akin to nomadic herdsmen but not anywhere like the monstrous killers and blood baying herdsmen terrorising us all.
Just like footballers whose eyes are always on the ball, politicians do not second guess or take chances when it comes to following power.
Forget the razzmatazz, interest is the only permanent thing in politics.
If you hurt a politician’s interest, you may never predict his next move because, from period of antiquity till date, man’s primordial quest is tailored towards avoidance of pain and pursuit of happiness.
In politics, there is permanent interest which is the paramount consideration.
Mobile political bestsellers are prone to move if the grass is greener on the other side, after all, it is a well known aphorism that “there is no permanent friend in politics.”
Politics is a game of numbers but some may not agree to play inclusive politics especially if they enjoy a temporary advantage.
The opportunity of party primaries remains a strong defining moment to test the resolve of a party to go into a general election either as a united front or as a rag tag group.
What is coming out strong in the seperate imbroglios bedevilling the parties after their fractious 2018 primaries is that they planned to fail in the general election.
For the umpteenth time, post primaries conflicts or crises can make or mar the electoral fortune of a party in a general election depending on how free, fair and transparent it conducted its primaries.
Unfortunately, party officials and delegates see the short period of party primaries as a bazaar period.
During party primaries, the language, written or spoken, is cash, money and other forms of legal tender obtained from aspirants in various forms or guises by party officials and voting delegates.
Buried in this myopic pecuniary thought of how to fleece desperate aspirants of funds, no one (not even party officials who should know better) seems interested in what this cash and carry mentality will ultimately portend for the party.
The need for free and fair primary and effective post-primary dispute resolution cannot be overemphasized.
A sensible political party avoids crises ab initio by giving a level playing field to its aspirants but if this ideal is not available, it goes into serious post-primary dispute resolution.
Notwithstanding the desperate antics of polticians to win at all cost, the party holds the balance for propriety and curts disintegration if it mismanages it on the alter of filthy lucre.
Once aspirants are reasonably satisfied with the conduct of party primaries, it is easier to forge consensus and support the winner to clinch victory for the party.
However, where aspirants are gravely hurt and aggrieved that they were cheated in the process, it will require deft touches, uncommon manoeuvres and compromises to keep the house together.
If you armtwist aspirants, you have rebellion on your hand because if you sow the wind, you reap whirlwind.
This is beyond lip service or mereticious grandstanding by corrupt and integrity challenged leadership of the party.
It is easier to destroy than to build and party cohesion and team spirit is most vulnerable.
Where party officials get visibly compromised, autocratic and corrupt, they lose the moral high ground to mediate or midwife peaceful resolution of internal party conflicts.
A fine mind, Dr Diala, has ably posited that if you “deliberately and mischievouslu create disputes and bad blood, then pretend you want to resolve them, where do you start from? Some broken bottles have no repair. Especially when broken consciously, arrogantly and deliberately.
There cannot be peace and reconciliation without justice.”
The present crisis rocking Imo PDP is one of the many solid examples that hell has no fury like a politician scorned or cheated out of his mandate.
Senator Sam Daddy Anyanwu is in court crying blue murder that he was cheated in the 2018 Imo PDP guber primary via rigging perpetrated by his lone challenger Hon Ihedioha.
It appears that Hon Ihedioha and the party leaders did not do enough to forge reconciliation because there is festering rebellion in Imo PDP as we write.
The undeniable outcome is the formation of a deadly splinter group styled #nPDP which is opposed to the Ihedioha ticket.
Needless to say that Imo PDP has been badly bruised by the last minute emergence of the formidable #nPDP led by the irrepressible Dr Fabian Ihekweme and some other political elephants and hippopotamuses of the PDP extraction (some of whom are operating “nicodemously”).
Imo PDP is not in power today and last won Imo Guber as far back as in the 2003-2007 epoch with His Excellency Governor Udenwa.
Historical and political records show that Imo PDP has been in opposition since 2011 when Governor Ohakim won with PPA ticket.
PDP also lost Imo guber in 2011-2015 and 2015-2019 and now the 2019-2023 season seems dead on arrival because not much can be done in Imo PDP without the Sam Daddy essence in Imo PDP.
Simpletons or nincompoops may think it is all about Sam Daddy or any privileged leader waking up one morning and asking his teeming supporters to sheath the sword.
Political reconciliation after being robbed or unjustly treated does not happen easily and simply too.
Supporters and followers in politics are not herded like mumu or zombies by their leaders, principals or associates.
The relationship between an aspirant and his followers is complex and not anything near serfdom.
Not every supporter of an aspirant is necessituous, an eOtimkpu or daily paid e-canvasser.
Supporters are kings in politics…you do not mess with their egos or individual or collective sensibilities.
Just like football fans, an aspirant’s supporters and followers feel the weight of injustice more than anyone else including the aspirant because they invested their legitimate expectations and future in the candidature they are backing.
Supporters have their minds and eyes too which are different from that of whom they are supporting.
It is indubitable that even a worm can turn.
Thus, an aspirant can be deserted if he compromises the group interest or personal choices of his supporters.
Every vote is important in an election and there is no successful aspiration if there is no huge support base.
Before some will get it twisted and get worried, be reminded that I am not a PDP sympathizer…never!
More than anything else I will want the PDP to further disintegrate being the grandfather of impunity in our national politics.
Be reminded too that Imo PDP is not alone in this big time mess of questionable mandate because Imo APGA guber ticket is also having the same legitimacy problem leading to the formation of Imo #nAPGA.
It is public knowledge that Imo #nAPGA bigwigs like His Excellency Governor Ohakim, Hon Ike C. Ibe, Hon Uche Onyeagucha, Senator Bright Nwanne, Chief Frank Nneji, Dr Sam Amadi to name a few are in court challenging the Imo guber ticket allegedly hijacked by Senator Araraume.
Openly, Hon Uche Onyeagucha of #nAPGA has roundly and angrily rejected and impugned the Imo APGA guber ticket and has uged his supporters to do likewise while others like Hon. Ike C. Ibe, ex-Governor Ohakim and Chief Okey Eze are said to have left the sinking APGA boat in search of political accommodation elsewhere.
The ruling APC that was almost coasting to victory is not free from undemocratic and impunity related issues in its guber and other tickets made possible by an autocratic and tactless double- speaking national leadership.
With the way and manner the APC National gifted the Imo guber (and other tickets including to those who never bought forms), it requires no soothsayer to confirm that Imo APC will have everything to regret in the coming days for those monumental frauds and political injustices.
The lesson in all these is according to Dr Ihekweme of Imo #nPDP, “if you fix the primary, you fail the election.
You use the history of yesterday to cure the ills of today.”
We agree completely because this is akin to our “Operation Rig and Fail” project.
The avoidable implosions and rebellions and protests in Imo APC, PDP and APGA are available for the sole reason that lawlessness is being made to reign supreme with clear-cut deficits or losses in their followerships.
From the benefit of hindsight, no one has ever won Imo guber via rigging or desperation and it will not change in 2019.
Imo politicians should remember that “if a cunning man die, another cunning man go bury am.”
It is easy to dismiss aggrieved party gladiators as sore losers or paid spoilers but difficult to remember that monkey smart, monkey smart, na because tree near tree near tree.”
One Igbo proverb epitomises that wherever a child is crying and pointing at, his mother or father must be there. The #nAPGA and #nPDP elements have a common point they are interrogating about need for free and fair primary and we must take them serious.
If the condition for a splinter group is eliminated or reduced, no party members will be willing to rock the boat.
Our polity will be calm and our politics very invitingly durable if we treat our fellow party men and women and aspirants with respect.
One African proverb serves a useful lesson to all mandate stealing desperadoes and primary election rigging machines in Imo and beyond…
“If you want to go fast, go alone.
If you want to go far, go together.”
If you chop alone, you go die alone is true in politics as it is in other aspects of life.
A new normal is possible…Biko gwazie ndi yard unu inugo!
Prof Obiaraeri is my name, the ☆☆☆☆☆ 5-Star Civilian General etc.