The former Speaker of the Federal House of Representatives, Rt. Hon. Yakubu Dogara, recently decamped dramatically from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC). He gave six reasons for the action he took including the worrisome allegation that the incumbent Governor of Bauchi state, his state, Bala Mohammed, had secured a N4.6 billion loan that was taken from a bank and corruptibly paid directly into a private company’s account!
Specifically Dogara alleged that the Governor used a company in which he was a director and whose address was his mother’s residence in Bauchi to execute a N4.6 billion vehicle purchase contract! Remember Mudashiru Obasa, the Lagos State House of Assembly Speaker, and a similar award of multi-million Naira contracts to companies in which he personally had interests?
The immediate past Speaker claimed that Governor Bala Mohammed whom he helped into power had not lived up to expectation. Also he claimed that he could not raise the issues and many more questions without a charge of disloyalty levelled against him if he were to remain a member of the PDP. So shutting the door on the party and embracing the one he had equally left last year in the same manner remained the better option for him?
Marshalling out reasons behind his defection Dogara had questioned the local government allocations and accounts of the state and the campaign promise of conducting the local government elections which has remained unfulfilled till this day. He equally asked why contracts were being inflated and payment of mobilisation done in violation of extant rules on procurement.
The Bauchi state government had indirectly reacted to the allegations accusing Dogara of nursing a 2023 political ambition and describing him as a political prostitute. While the issue here could be linked to corruption and failure of governance in Bauchi state Dogara must have been motivated by something other than what he was saying as reasons for his defection.
When ex-Speaker Dogara left the APC for the PDP he had adduced reasons of corruption and failure of governance for his action. Now the same reasons had pushed him out of the PDP to the APC! He was led as a new ‘bride’ by the Interim National Chairman of the crisis-ridden APC to the presidential Villa where Muhammadu Buhari, the President, was waiting with open hands to usher them in.
Perhaps Dogara’s grouse with Governor Mohammed in particular and the PDP in general could be that he had not recieved enough ‘booty’ he merited hence his radical decision to come back home as a ‘prodigal’ son in whom the ruling party was well pleased to receive back. That is politics Nigeriana for you — no permanent ‘enemy’, ideology or principle but always selfish interest and ego-massaging antics.
The major problem with politics in Nigeria is that service delivery ranks lowest in the scheme of administrative things. There is this scramble for looting of resources on a scale beyond belief from Abuja to the states’ capitals. The people, their welfare and security, can go to hell while the executive parasites feed fat on the patrimony.
If what Dogara said about the gubernatorial system in his state were found to be true then the Governor, a habitual visitor to the EFCC, have questions to answer when his immunity expires. However, if they were found to be baseless and fabricated lies to tarnish the image of the Governor then Dogara must be told that vindictiveness in politics has a limit.
Besides, if the defection had something to do with a political ambition come 2023 as alleged then only time would tell. The truth is that if Dogara had been given what he considered to be rightfully his in terms of political patronage by the Governor or the PDP he would not have been singing the ‘song’ he now sings.
Political cross-carpetting is a Nigerian political epidemic curable only by resource control, allocation and corruption. It is only the President who may not have any reason to dump his party for another for obvious reasons. Governors, legislators and other politicians do it as if it is the norm.
In Edo state, for instance, it has been defection galore as the September 19 gubernatorial poll looms. The APC candidate, Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu, had left the PDP (a political party platform he had used to vie for the governorship four years ago) for the APC while the embattled incumbent Governor Godwin Obaseki had dumped the APC (the hitherto ruling party in the state that brought him to power) for the ‘opposition’ PDP.
What the cross-carpetting situation in Edo state demonstrated is that politicians in general and our shameless breed in particular cannot be trusted. They appear to have mastered the art of ‘chop-chop’ political syndrome that remaining in the opposition or finding themselves without source of free flow of funds amounts to political suicide.
Rt. Hon. Yakubu Dogara, no matter the merit or demerit of his wild allegations against Governor Bala, remains in the eyes of many Nigerians, a political prostitute much like many of his peers. In Nigeria political prostitution pays handsome dividends! And we, the followers, the people oppressed, are paying dearly for this recurrent political irresponsibility packaged as responsibility.
AUTHOR: SOC Okenwa…
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