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Nigeria 2023 General Elections: A Crossroad And A Rejoinder To The Alternative, 2023 Political Realities That Annoy And Heal, By Reno Omokri (Published By Thisday New Paper). By David Adenekan

"My problem with Tinubu is borne out of contemporary issues in Nigeria that relegates his kinsmen to a second fiddle position by a very minority group called the Fulani tribe." Adenekan.

To start with, Reno Omokri's analysis on who will likely emerge as the next president, bearing in mind all unforeseen circumstances, kind of resonates with my thoughts as a political scientist. 

Although, I am kind of disdainful of the choice of Tinubu as the next President in 2023, it is nothing personal. Also, it is not because of corruption as nearly every politician in Nigeria is corrupt. It is now a norm. 

Suffice it to say, my problem with Tinubu is borne out of contemporary issues in Nigeria that relegates his kinsmen to a second fiddle position by a very minority group called the Fulani tribe. 

Yes, his failure to lead and see himself first, as a Yoruba man before any other interests, is very worrisome in the contraption called Nigeria.

President Muhammadu Buhari did not fail to defend and fight for his fulani tribe. He has demonstrated this fact many times in the course of history. As a military Head of State, he supported a Fulani man from Chad against an Igbo man from Nigeria, to be the Deputy Secretary of the Organization of African Unity (OAU). 

He was sacked as the military leader of Nigeria in 1985 by the Babangida led military coup because of tribalism and nepotism. This was alleged in the maiden speech that was delivered by Lieutenant General Joshua Dongoyaro (Retired). 

As this was not enough, in the year 2,000, Buhari led a delegation of Fulani leaders to Oyo state to confront the then Executive Governor of Oyo state, Lam Adesina and asked him! "Why are you killing my people?" 

The whole world, including Senator Bola Ahmed Tinubu knew Muhammadu Buhari would put his tribe first before any national interest and, it did not stop him from becoming the President in 2015. The simple analogy of this fact, is that, in human history we have different people with different time. 

The perception of people today, may not be the same perception in another two decades. 

Yes, in human history, some prevailing contemporary issues may makes human beings to be very dynamic and adapt to a new trajectory, regardless of the issues in the past. 

This is just the truth of life. 

The fundamental question we need to ask Senator Bola Ahmed Tinubu is that, is today's issue of insecurity as it concerns lives and properties, not one of the burning issues and worries of the Yoruba people within the multi ethnic groups and a contraption called Nigeria?  

Also, is self preservation not the first law of nature? 

Has Senator Bola Ahmed Tinubu, (one of the current foremost Yoruba leaders) come to the realization of this simple fact that, self preservation is the first law of nature?

Alas, Tinubu's desperate ambition to become the President of Nigeria in 2023, at the detriment of his identity as a Yoruba man, is like chasing a mirage. 

Hmmm, is Tinubu truly a Yoruba man?

But frankly speaking, the game of politics in present day Nigeria is realism over idealism. 

The configuration registry database of voters in Nigeria is corrupted in favor of the core northern States (northwest and northeast). This was deliberately done under the Buhari administration to perpetuate northern political hegemony over the southern region. 

In both the 2015 and 2019 general elections, the falsification and manipulation of voters registration was so glaring in many states of the core north like Kano, Katsina, Kaduna, Jigawa, Sokoto, Borno, Zamfara, Bauchi and Yobe to the extent that, the numbers of votes cast in many polling units, were higher than the numbers of registered voters. 

This is in spite of the fact that, in many parts of Zamfara and Borno states where the level of insecurity had made many to flee from their ancestral homes for safety of their dear lives, we saw millions of votes coming from these states that have been turned to a ghost town by the violent attacks of Boko Haram insurgency and Bandits. 

What is the validity of votes cast without voters?

In 2018 and ahead of the 2019 general elections, the Independent National Elecroral Commission (INEC), under the Chairmanship of Professor Mahmood Yakubu (a fulani man and a strong ally of President Muhammadu Buhari), at the 11th hours, created thousands of supplimentary polling units all over the northern states against few hundreds of supplementary polling units that were created in the Southern states. 

Say it to the marines that this was not done to add more electoral value to northern regions and clandestinely pave way for the re-election of President Muhammasu Buhari in 2019.

My humble self and some few political analysts saw this anomaly and dangerous trend which we brought to the knowledge of political actors in the south to kick against it but, they were all engrossed and engaged with their selfish interests against the collective interests of their people in the southern states. 

As it is, it is going to be difficult for a southern president to emerge without a very strong support from the Northern cabal, except we change the fraudulent electoral system through whatever means possible.

Yes, you may not like Tinubu but politics is a game of numbers, and Tinubu among all other presidential aspirants from southern Nigeria, remains the foremost candidate to the north, in this fraudulent and manipulated game of numbers. Him wielding political influence and sagacity in the north, cannot be overemphasized. 

Yes, I concur with Reno Omokri that apart from former President Goodluck Jonathan, no presidential aspirant in southern Nigeria has the kind of clout, network and influence that Tinubu has built over the period of his political career in the northern region. It is the bitter truth.

However, I foresee a situation where Tinubu may be ditched by the same fraudulent electoral system he collaborated with the northern political actors to establish. 

The likelihood of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP presenting a moslem northern candidate, is almost certain, with the strong resolution by the party's hierarchy to jettison the zoning arrangement and make the office of President open to every party member; and if a northern moslem emerges from either northwest or northeast, I strongly doubt if Tinubu can muster enough political strength to gather votes from the north to defeat PDP in a general elections. This is also taking into cognizance, the fact that he may not get an overwhelming support of his kinsmen in the southwest. And, his support from the southeast and niger delta states may be very marginal to increase including his likely dwindling support in the southwest. 

Also, I do not see a replay of a June 12th scenario in 2023 because, in today's Nigeria, we have different people with different time. 

More so, religion will play a key factor in the 2023 general elections because of the belief in some quarter that President Muhammadu Buhari would want to turn Nigeria into a moslem country; and some Christians believe that the Nigeria moslems have already completed their two terms with President Muhammadu Buhari and 2023 is the turn of Nigeria Christians.

Prejudice apart, did Nigeria (a secular country) not officially become a bonafide member of the Organization Of Islamic Nations, OIC under the leadership of General Muhammadu Buhari as a military leader of Nigeria in 1983? 

Again, this is not June 12th, 1993 where a moslem/moslem ticket won the heart of many christians across the Niger. 

In the final analysis, if a northern moslem emerges to take over the mantle of leadership from President Muhammadu Buhari, he will never govern a united Nigeria. In fact, if he assuages the people from the south by setting up a government of national unity to reconcile and diffuse the tension in the body politics, it will make no difference and have no positive impact because, the people will view any Southerner in the so called government of national unity as northern collaborators and betrayers. 

The agitation for secession that is already making waves in the four geo political zones namely: southwest, southeast, Niger Delta and Middle Belt will be more stronger than before and the rising surge of insecurity in the country is not going to be a child play compared with what we are currently experiencing. This may mark the end of a contraption called Nigeria but not without the shedding of many innocent blood. 

Is this what we all want???

Yes, the northern oligarchy or cabal may think they have the monopoly of military power but they should be strongly advised that you only know the beginning of a war and nobody knows the end of a war. 

In fact, those who start a war may not live to see the end of the war.

In summary, the only and best option from this political quagmire is for all stakeholders in project Nigeria to come together and renegotiate the country called Nigeria. 

It is either we restructure the country into true federalism and regional autonomy or, "To your Tent, Oh Israel."

A stitch in time saves nine.

Time will tell!

David Adenekan writes from Chicago, Illinois.

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