3rd August, 2010
It pains me to the marrows anytime I read IBBâ€™s useless and unwanted stories on the pages of our newspapers and magazines concerning his presidential bid in 2011. I get offended, and feel totally devastated that we still allow the hopeless, shameless, and the bloody dictator to grace the front pages of our newspapers and magazines, talking nonsense and forcing me to remember the tragic pains and sorrow of yesterday which I copiously documented in a book for posterity.
I have cursed the day IBB came to power in Nigeria because that was the day all the devils in the world landed in Nigeria, and the centre could no longer hold as anarchy was loosed upon Nigeria.
If Nigeria is not a failed nation that works for those who failed it, tell me the reason why IBB at 70 will want us to vote for him as president in 2011? Do you promote somebody who scored zero in all subjects in an examination to the next class? If Nigeria has not excelled hopelessly in several dubious departments, no newspaper or magazine worth its salt in Nigeria will allow its front page to be used to celebrate a man that ruined and destroyed Nigeria, a man deficit in honour, deficit in character, deficit in integrity, a man without shame, a man who cannot be trusted.
There are thousand and one reasons why IBB must not preside over any serious office in Nigeria again, even as a local government chairman. Just like General Abacha, IBBâ€™s tenure was characterised by sectionalism, state sponsored killings, crass sycophancy, brazen mismanagement, arrogance, violent rule, nepotism, deception, press gag, destruction of judiciary, destruction of democratic institutions, stigmatization of Abuja, violation of international protocol and diplomacy, looting of national till, reducing Nigeria to a pariah nation, annulment of free and fair elections, suppression of pro-democracy and human rights activists, putting Nigeria in a state of war, setting ethnic groups against one another.
During his administration, he violated Nigeriaâ€™s secular status, created dubious millionaires and billionaires overnight, destroyed Nigerian armed forces, sowed seed of discord among 150 million Nigerians, wasted 40 billion Naira in a Transition Programme he never believed in. This list is endless!
Make no mistake about it, whatever Nigeria is going through today was kick-started by IBB in 1985 and he sealed it up on June 23, 1993. Since June 12, 1993 Nigeria has not held a free and fair election and it may continue to elude us if the likes of IBB is not brought to book.
Until we have the courage, the boldness and the political will to deal with the enemies of Nigeria, the world will continue to laugh at us. No nation rises above its potentials. The nation is what the leaders have made it and I do not care whether those leaders were civilians or military men.
In body language, IBB may be pretending that all is well, trying to be fearless and unperturbed in the face of mounting criticisms against his inordinate ambition but beneath the bravado is a man whose past hunts him to hell.
My good friend and wonderful writer Olaitan Ladipo once educated us on the English expression of the words whistling in the dark. He says â€˜it is all about someone walking alone in the forest at night, whistling as he goes along. He is whistling so that people will think he is not afraid, whereas the real reason he is whistling is because he is afraidâ€™.
In all this, I have one advice for IBB: withdraw from the race now and go and join others in searching for the man that will lead Nigerian out of crisis you created in the first place. Do not deceive yourself. Nobody goes to the market to purchase a basket thinking that he or she can use it to fetch water. Even the basket seller knows it is an impossible task. The truth is that Nigeria has moved beyond the likes of IBB. Actions carry consequences!
â€¢ Joe Igbokwe, writes from Lagos