Five fish bones

January 10, 2023
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Sartorial designers are making it big in the New Year. Thanks particularly to the five semi-break-away PDP governors, otherwise called the G5 governors led by Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State; fancy dresses have become another way of peppering political opponents. Perhaps, another stanza in the Wike’s musical hit would be – ‘as we dey dress fine, it dey pain dem, and as it dey pain dem, we dey dress fine.’ Unarguably, the five governors have become like five fish bones that left the oesophagus and lodged in the thoracic spine. 

Ordinarily, a fish bone lodged in the oesophagus can give a great discomfort. But as we were taught back in the days, one heavy mould of garri without soup could force the bone down the abdomen, even if it causes severe pain going down. Again, licking salt or gulping large quantity of water can also deal with that terrible discomfort. Of course, mothers would give doses of soft blows at the back to aid the descent of the bones.

Any of the above methods would see tears roll down the cheeks, and the pain accompanying the exercise would be a constant reminder for one to be careful the next time one is licking Ogbono soup, with pieces of bony fresh fish. There is little doubt that Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, has turned the PDP to his private estate which he returns every election cycle to lick the Ogbono soup, by way of a presidential contest. Unfortunately for him this time, he was careless with the fish bones in the soup.    

As part of their unity pact, Governors Nyesom Wike (Rivers), Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi (Enugu), Seyi Makinde (Oyo), Okezie Ikpeazu (Abia) and Samuel Ortom (Benue), have become the five fish bones that left the oesophagus and lodged in the thoracic spine of Atiku Abubakar and his PDP. A thoracic pain is a dull, aching pain. It is sharp, stabbing and intermittent. And since the cause of the pain is difficult to access, it is also difficult to self-diagnose and determine how to deal a blow to the source.

To aggravate the sensational pain, the governors now deck-out in fanciful uniformed attires to dance on the political grave of the PDP’s presidential candidate, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar. The dressing antics of the five fish bones reminds one of the youthful days when ‘dressing to kill’ was every child’s dream at Christmas and the New Year. To add salt to injury, the governors, fully robed gyrate in the opposite direction of Atiku’s presidential campaign train.

But the governors’ gambit is beyond sensational dressing. Apologies to Lanny Wolfe’s “dancing on the graves of my enemies” lyrics; at the end of the election cycle, will the five fish bones be rescued as the Israelites were from Egypt? Will they on February 25, cross over on dry ground and look back to see their political enemy drowned in the presidential election tsunami? Will they after the election be dancing on the troubles that have been troubling their political life since the PPD presidential election was hijacked by the Atiku forces?

Read Also: PDP refutes report on Atiku’s health

This column believes they will, even if they miss their mark on who to support for the presidential race. No doubt, making a group choice of the presidential candidate to support may become an albatross for the G5 governors, especially for Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, Okezie Ikpeazu and Samuel Ortom. With Atiku Abubakar of their party thrown under the bus, the group is left with supporting either Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu of the All Progressive Congress (APC) or Peter Obi (Okwute) of the Labour Party (LP).

In Enugu, Abia and Benue states, there are many potential voters who may desert any of the governors who openly canvass for any other presidential candidate other than Peter Obi of the LP, regardless of whether he is likely to win or not. The backlash against Governor Chukwuma Soludo of Anambra State, when he said that Peter Obi has little chance of winning the presidential election would be a pointer for them. The same abuse has been the lot of Arthur Eze, for openly denigrating the ambition of Peter Obi and canvassing for Atiku Abubakar.

But inevitably, all the music lyrics, the dances, the dressing to kill, the junketing and holidaying and partying, indeed all the scheming and trade-ins would amount to political disaster and waste of public funds if the G5 are unable to ensure that Atiku Abubakar fails at the presidential poll. They would also be in a damp squalid political situation if they support a presidential candidate that is unable to win at the polls. As the chickens come home to roost, the G5 is therefore in a political dilemma.

Interestingly, the leader of the group has boasted that the governors are in strong positions to determine the choices of the majority of electorates in their respective states, and would direct them on their presidential choice. How true that boast is would be tested at the polls. But from some indicators, Rivers State appears to be more politically cohesive than Abia, Enugu and Benue. However, Wike’s control of Rivers State politics and state choice about the 2023 presidential election will soon be tested at the polls.

Enugu State which would have been a walk-over for Governor Ugwuayi who is contesting a senatorial seat, and the PDP, has one of its leading gubernatorial aspirant now heading the Labour Party threat. While Ugwuanyi may have done enough to secure an easy passage to the red chambers, can he afford to support the potential emergence of Asiwaju Tinubu, damn the political backlash? Interestingly, his filial relation and political associate Chijioke Edeoga, is the governorship candidate of the state LP.

On his part, Governor Ortom of Benue State will have to deal with the fog of contesting for a senate seat in PDP, having sympathy for Peter Obi of Labour Party, and having political heavy weights like David Mark and Gabriel Suswan canvassing for PDP. Making a dispassionate decision may even be more difficult for Governor Ikpeazu of Abia State, a senatorial aspirant also, as the state is even more volatile than Benue and Enugu states, with the pro-separatist groups operating heavily in that axis.

Governor Seyi Makinde of Oyo State has lesser stress, with making a decision. With Atiku out of the way, he can easily align with Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu of the All Progress Congress (APC), who has the brightest chance of winning the presidential election, and not suffer much backlash like his brother governors of Abia, Enugu and Benue. No doubt, Wike and his brother governors have so far taught Atiku Abubakar some political lessons, about political betrayal and the law of Karma. But will a disagreement over the choice of a common presidential candidate not dissolve the five fish bones lodged in Atiku’s thoracic spine?

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