-By Austen Akhagbeme:
Sometime last week, I was in the midst of a very hot debate about the suitability, capacity and phantasmagoric appearances of the three leading presidential aspirants in the forthcoming presidential election.
Even when I was prickly tempted to join issues by taking a side, I restrained myself dispassionately to be a good listener while playing the role of an impartial moderator.
The fireworks were intense, especially from the young lady arguing on the side of the esteemed Peter Obi. She was of the blatant opinion that Peter Obi is not only the messiah that a dying nation with a destructive, cyclical and self-rejuvenating elite class needs, but a saviour on whose shoulder the future of a polarised nation depends.
She was so articulate and quick to martial out her candidate’s usual credentials of being frugal, spartan and humble in his approach to governance and disposition to life respectively. His relative youthfulness among the three was subtly taken for good health, strength and agility needed for such a topmost job. I was seduced by her argument but kept my cool.
The Tinubu Proponent was someone I knew and respect over the years. Even though he is younger than I am, I have come to respect his usually dispassionate opinion and unquestionable insight into knotty issues of political concern of late.
He was of a firm opinion that Tinubu, based on antecedent, was head and shoulder above the rest and that the nation will see a visionary leader who knows what to do if Tinubu succeeds. But how visionary can he be outside the present retrogressive vision he openly helped to midwife, the young lady asked?
The Atiku supporter was miffed by the arguments above and couldn’t see the reason we are jettisoning an experienced and detribalised Nigerian like the Waziri for those who contributed to the present mess we find ourselves today.
The young lady reminded him about the danger of one ethnic group succeeding itself in a multi-ethnic society like ours. And that is what Atiku is trying to do, she added. The Waziri’s man dismissed her argument by pointing to the fact that a religion-sensitive personality like Atiku cannot be dragged into the mistake of a religious bigoted kinsman, blah, blah blah.
And then the bomb! I never thought of it, especially in the light in which the Tinubu advocate put it succinctly. He simply asked: what if Peter Obi fails to perform after his election? What happened to the euphoria, expectations, hope, tears and the future of the teeming youth population whose energy and vigour are presently being dissipated and deployed towards the victory of the former Anambra state Governor? Because, it has happened before, even now.
Trust the young lady. She said it is good for us to anticipate success instead of failure. Success begets success. Failure begets failure. For her, Obi was a success. He shall remain a success. Since then, her voice kept resonating in my mind. What about you?
- Austen Akhagbeme is a Columnist with Blank NEWS Online