–Blank NEWS Online (NIGERIA) –By Austen AKHAGBEME:
I love Eyitayo Jegede, the PDP Governorship candidate for the just concluded Ondo gubernatorial elections. He came, he saw but couldn’t conquer.
Though the Senior Advocate won convincingly in Isidore, Akure North and South local government areas, he fought a fair fight in others. He had the full support of his party to the dying minutes and enjoyed their hopes and expectations. Yet, he lost. He must have lost satisfactorily and gallantly even though it might be too early to declare the elections free and fair.
But the loss in Edo was heralded by another genre of music. It was a war song orchestrated to go for the opponents jugular. Between the political maneuvering, costly mistakes were made unawares.
At the final hour, friends turned enemies and publicly professed party fatefuls fell for greed and vendetta. The victim became the innocently confident arrow head. This was painful.
In politics, there’s always a big lesson to learn. One of the biggest lessons is striving always to be at peace with your own political household. Another is to learn how to choose your battles rightly and timeously.
In Edo state, friends fought with themselves like there was no tomorrow. They fought dirty, openly and secretly. Those who fought openly were better than those who fought secretly. The secret enemies turned the apple cart with ignominy. They were the unknown winners and known losers at the same time. What an ambivalence and ambiguity of purpose and vision!
This is surely not a requiem for the humongous betrayal by the self same political siblings in Edo. It is rather a reflection on what went wrong that could have gone right.
APC is just a party of the impossible. Today’s heroes can easily be turned into tomorrow’s villains, no thanks to the inherent unforgiveness of political sins, greed and vendetta prevalent within the rank and file.
Unlike what happened in Edo state, I knew APC will win Ondo state. Not because of the political ingenuity of the AKETI himself, but the diametrically opposed interest and intentions of the party demi- gods and demagogues in comparison with the Edo debacle.
The deft move to silence others to the detriment of the overall well being of the party all in pursuit of relevance come 2023, was their greatest undoing.
But all of that is over now, as life goes on. The battle that was won and lost in Ondo was like sweet music to both the contestants and the voters even though there was the fear of a possible violence in the beginning.
That of Edo was another genre of music with a macabre dance: it was a war song, sweetened with a cacophony of dissent and distrust that took away so much sanity and conscience from both the winners and the losers alike. Congratulations to the Aketi himself; the executive governor of Ondo state.
- Austen AKHAGBEME is a Columnist with Blank NEWS Online