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Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Kudos And Kobos To Buhari For Acknowledging Greatness In GEJ (READ)

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[pull_quote_center]”Whatever one’s views are, Nigerians must thank former President Goodluck Jonathan for not digging-in in the face of defeat and thereby saving the country untold consequences,”

President Buhari on his October 1 Independence Speech to the nation.[/pull_quote_center]

[dropcap]O[/dropcap]nce again, President Buhari has earned more than my respect in this acknowledgement of greatness and statesmanship as well sportsmanship by his Predecessor. That is the Hallmark of Greatness by itself, what President Buhari has done. This is about the third time he is doing this but he has made it official in his national broadcast as a President once again.

And that speaks volumes.

That by itself is a singular act which tells me that Buhari, unlike many of his followers or supporters more bereft of logical juxtapositions, appreciates that indeed, the true hero of Nigeria’s democracy in this millenium is Goodluck Jonathan.

And that is all I have asked for from him. That is all I have waited for him to say out loud the way he has said it. And he has done it.

The spectre of a divided Nigeria stared at us in the face in January this year before the elections and it was a divided Nigeria with bloodshed and genocide in huge proportions. If Jonathan had been a hothead, more ambitious than introspective in power, more politically territorial than politically timid, much bloodthirsty than more benign, more clannish for ethnic supremacy than convinced about national unity; then I would probably be writing this piece as a refugee in a foreign country, watching on international networks how brothers and sisters would have butchered each other in an unprecedented pogrom.

But Jonathan is a ‘Born Well’, a rare breed. He indeed meant it when he said his political ambition wasn’t worth anyone’s blood. That was not an admission of defeat or cowardice. That was a truism in him. He had done his bit and if the electorate didn’t feel it was enough, he would leave.

And leave he did.

Now, no one is saying that his administration did not have flaws and should not be probed on its infractions. Far from it. Every new government comes in with a burst of energy to achieve the best of its ambitions.

However, what was skewed was the constant Blame Games the political acolytes of President Buhari threw at Jonathan. And a close analysis of such statements would reveal personal vendetta in the intent of such persons than any analytical intentions, many of which have been disproved to be needless grandstanding.

It is possible that President Buhari has realised on getting to the seat, that Jonathan must have been superhuman to contend with the myriad of problems he too is facing right now. It is possible that Buhari has seen the limitations of his own political programmes with the present realities of expectations and deliverables. That statement he made on Jonathan wasn’t just written by a Speech Writer and passed on to Buhari to read. It must have been an input from the President himself; a final acceptance of gratitude to a
predecessor who is gamesmanship personified.

And that puts closure ( for me) on the whole political saga of 2015. The one I voted for and supported has had his due day of gratitude and as Jonathan himself said; he and his wife have decided to be away from public glare for at least one year, to rest from sixteen years of public life. He deserves that. Albeit, he has the deification of his political ideology of peace on the shrine of our democracy, as a legacy.

And so, as the focus turns to President Buhari on the saddle, I have to re-iterate this; whatever criticisms and verbal cudgels one throws at him in the critiques of his administrative style, they are part of a nation in transition. No one wants him to fail, but success can only be achieved by encompassing the merits of logical arguments and well-meaning points and not dismissing such as coming from an aggrieved ”5%”.

President Buhari has the mien of a loving Grandpa and that paternalistic outlook and perhaps political ideology would be the perception many would carry of him for years. That Buhari means well for the Larger Nigeria, within the ambitions of his perceived empowerment of the Northern outlook in his immediate appointments, is not in doubt. But the Larger Nigeria is fractured and unforgiving in ramifications; a brute which demands a worship of its wiles and whims.

And as I would give President Buhari kudos, so would I be inclined to give him my Kobo; a two cents of progressive opinions and criticisms as part of Nation Building.

Jonathan did his Better, Buhari should do his Best. How both translates to the greater good of Nigeria is what history would tell us in the nearest future.

Happy Independence.

Charles Novia is an award-winning filmmaker. He is founder of November Productions and November Records. Connect with him on Facebook.

The opinions expressed in this article are solely those of the author.

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