Jonathan in the eye of the storm

It was Shakespeare in one of his philosophical treatises who asserted that “ambition is made of sterner stuff”. In this brief quote lies the philosophical underpinning of any aspiration or ambition for power that is worthwhile. Coming back home , we are today witnessing history as the centripetal forces struggle, even though in a heinous and ruthless manner, to wrest power from the centrifugal forces, as represented by President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan.

To many students of power struggle, the desperate and dangerous war being waged by Boko Haram against the Nigerian state gives credence to the Machiavellian prescription that ‘war is the trade of princes and it is only in war that fortune smiles or frowns’. This assertion is aptly illustrated in the Machiavellian book The Prince .

To better understand the ‘strange’ method being applied by the Boko Haram sect in their quest for power, it is recommended that one should first read The Prince, a book in which ascension to power is justified by all means. Yet, as devilish as Boko Haram’s methods appear, it is not surprising to many history-conscious Nigerians. After all, since after 1966, change of batons and ascendency to power in Nigeria has been violently organised with the exception of Shagari’s administration which itself was later overthrown by force of arms. In other words, to enable us contextualise the mission of Boko Haram, we must realise that Nigeria has been on a roller coaster ride politically.

Now, having successfully navigated into another democratic interregnum in 1999, the feudal forces expected power retention through the ballot box, but the sudden death of Umaru Musa Yar’Adua changed the permutations and ultimately upset the applecart. Sensing, therefore, that ascendency to the coveted throne was gradually slipping from its base and that military coup was unforeseeable at least in the nearest future, Nigeria’s unseen power brokers unleashed a monster, Boko Haram on the nation.

Not given to attaining power in a Godly and indeed orderly manner, these adherents of China’s Mao Tse Tung’s maxim that “power flows from the barrel of the gun”, are using insurgency as weapon of terror to unseat a lawfully elected government under the leadership of a God-fearing gentleman and academician, Goodluck Jonathan.

In the face of these daunting challenges, the question is: Should Jonathan capitulate? In answering the question (even as rhetorical as it seems) we must understand that Boko Haram’s ideological bent is so deep rooted and fundamental that it goes beyond Jonathan and his administration.

First, if we cast our mind back to the reign of Osama Bin Laden. He had issued a statement proclaiming Nigeria as a country to be “liberated’’ by his terrorist network, Al Queda. Secondly, soon after his proclamation, Boko Haram was born, and their mission has been made very clear to all. And that is their abhorrence of democracy and all it stands for; Western education is forbidden, and thirdly: that non-Muslims are ‘infidels’ that must in their estimation remain under the rulership of Muslims as slaves. These cardinal objectives of Boko Haram are not ambiguous and they have not minced words in reasserting them as reasons for their atrocious crimes.

Therefore, since the Jonathan government and indeed any other government, owe it a duty to the citizens to secure and protect them, it is imperative that the President does not chuckle or capitulate to the evil machinations of Boko Haram and its sponsors. To do so will tantamount to submitting our freedom and sovereignty to a bunch of lunatics whose lust for power knows no bound.

Indeed, the entire creativity and innovation of man over the centuries will be rendered a nullity. Life will then become brutish short and uninteresting. As it stands now, the civilised World possesses all it takes to rein in these hooligans and restore the dignity of man. Boko Haram and all it stands for is evil and has no place in modern world. Their campaign of terror will not succeed and in reality they will remain slaves to their warped ideologies and beliefs unless they purge themselves of their devilish ideologies.

The truth is that evil will never triumph over good. The ‘fatwa’ of Osama Bin Laden, Boko Haram and their hidden sponsors on Nigeria will never succeed . As a nation we cannot allow Boko Haram to define the bounds of our existence and freedom. They are morally depraved and insane to define our lives.By all means, President Jonathan ought to realise that he has the support of all men and women of goodwill in and outside the country, and they are in the majority. If the intention of Boko Haram as it is clearly manifest is to stop Jonathan in 2015, I want to assert that they have failed woefully, but rather have reinforced the desire of most Nigerians for Jonathan to return in 2015.

By all estimation, Jonathan has discharged his duties creditably and as the popular saying goes, the reward for hard work is more work. Therefore, Nigerian are full of expectations that Jonathan will not capitulate to the evil machinations of Boko Haram and their clandestine sponsors who see Jonathan as a stumbling block to their vaulting ambition to ascend the presidential throne by hook or crook.

It is common knowledge that these selfish and devilish power seekers who consider Nigeria their personal fiefdom had in the aftermath of the of 2011 elections threatened hell and brimstone should Jonathan contest the election. Specifically, they had threatened to make the country ungovernable, were Jonathan to win the election. With the support of Nigerians Jonathan contested and won the election, and today we are all witnesses to the manifestation of their threat against all of us. Yet, as a people we refuse to surrender our collective destiny and freedom to a cavernous clique who have appropriated Nigeria as their own enclave of power, influence and material acquisitions.

The terrorist sect is on their last struggle to reclaim a ‘state of impunity’ long truncated with the emergence of a civil democratic order since 1999. Therefore, Boko Haram can best be described as a struggle in shameful retreat that seeks to cling at any straw for survival. Their demand for swap of their partners in crime in detention for the abducted Chibok girls is equally the ideas emanating from a demented mind. The demand can best be described as abhorrent and sickening.

Power has since eluded them and their sponsors and every passing day in our democratic journey guarantees the erosion of the circumstances that made the ascendency of their ilk to federal power and its substitution with core democratic norms and values.

Therefore, Boko Haram can best be described as a struggle in shameful retreat that seeks to cling at any straw for survival.

Their demand for swap of their partners in crime in detention for the abducted Chibok girls is equally the ideas emanating from a demented mind. The demand can best be described as abhorrent and sickening.

While some schools of thought have postulated that the Boko Haram sect is on a mission to ensure the ouster of Jonathan and to a large extent the entire Southern Nigeria from power, other political pundits hold that the ideological bent of the terrorists is not such that can be assuaged even with a regime change, as their beliefs are rooted in lunatic and idiotic idiosyncrasies never to be imagined in both the ancient and modern worlds. The terrorist sect is on their last struggle to reclaim a ‘state of impunity’ long truncated with the emergence of a civil democratic order since 1999. Power has since eluded them and their sponsors and every passing day in our democratic journey guarantees the erosion of the circumstances that made the ascendency of their ilk to federal power and its substitution with core democratic norms and values.

Therefore, Boko Haram can best be described as a struggle in shameful retreat that seeks to cling at any straw for survival.

Their demand for swap of their partners in crime in detention for the abducted Chibok girls is equally the ideas emanating from a demented mind. The demand can best be described as abhorrent and sickening.

 

CHUKWUDI ENEKWECHI, a joutnalist, wrote from Abuja.

 

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