Goodluck Jonathan: Waiting for the Man for All Seasons for 2023
NNN: ”I don’t want the peace that passes all understanding. I want the understanding that brings peace” –Helen Keller
The place of peace for the individual, the community, and society is significant and overshadows any other requirement of man. Without it, the enjoyment of all other needs is relegated. In Nigeria, the search for peace has been a common denominator over time. The question, therefore, arises during the most intense political situations, such as the electoral period, when general elections will be held at all levels, including the presidency.
Nigeria witnessed different challenges in its political history during elections that often came close to collapsing. In the words of former President Olusegun Obasanjo, Nigeria will always be pushed to the brink of the clip and almost fell off, but a particular event or the ‘hand of God’ would bring it back to peace.
In the First Republic, the country panicked, just like the Second Republic before the advent of then General Muhammadu Buhari, as well as the case of then General Ibrahim Abacha who died to leave the office to General Abdulsalami Abubakar. Similar incidents occurred between 2014 and 2015 during the general elections that reinstated Muhammadu Buhari as a civilian president.
The scene was more pronounced after a ruling party’s second term, after eight years in office. In 2015, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and the All Progressives Congress (APC) headed for victory with the general belief that it would be difficult to win an election from a ruling party and the fact that the PDP already was clamoring to rule Nigeria forever.
Therefore, APC was at the forefront of a challenge that may be missed. A candidate was chosen who was suited to the challenge of the times. Buhari was judged as a man who can rectify the monster of corruption that was seen as the main impediment to national development. Goodluck Jonathan of the PDP was the incumbent chairman, succeeding the late Umaru Yar’adua, who had died while in office during the first term of his administration.
The whole country was in heat; Ordinary Nigerians were confused by not understanding the true intention of the ruling elites of the time. Here is a bloc of people who recently left the ruling PDP to form an alliance to challenge their former party, the PDP. Nigerians saw this as still voting for birds of a feather. But Buhari’s personality gave some Nigerians confidence that things would not be business as usual.
Some important events shaped and saved the country from this apparently historic precedent of what follows after a changing of the guard during the elections. One of those events was the famous telephone conversation that Jonathan started with Buhari even before the final count of the votes.
The night before the phone call, a PPD chief was seen on national television challenging the validity of the votes at the secretariat of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) office during the count. This created tension as the ruling party was signaling that it would contest the elections. But as usual, the hand of God entered the affairs of Nigeria once again.
President Jonathan then called Buhari to congratulate him. A former BBC staff member and now Director-General of FRCN, Dr. Mansur Liman, described it thus:
The call from the president (Jonathan) saved Nigeria from great pain. If the PDP had insisted that they had won the election, and the APC had said the same thing, the country would have been in chaos.
“Lives would have been lost and property destroyed. That call showed that in Nigeria, people can put the country first.
“I heard from PPD supporters that the president made the decision to make the call without consulting anyone. They told me that if he had talked to some of his advisers, they would have objected.”
This is what Goodluck Jonathan did for the country and the people at a critical time in their history. A simple phone call that saved Nigeria from falling off the cliff, as usual, taking knowledge of the prevailing situation at that time. With that, he joined the leagues of the likes of General Yakubu Gowon who saved the country during the civil war, and General Abdulsalami Abubakar who made a peaceful transition from military to civilian rule, as well as Olusegun Obasanjo who returned to ease the wounds of the annulment. of the electoral victory of Moshood Kashimawo Abiola. These three personalities returned at a time when Nigerians needed a person to restore the peace that the country needed so much.
The Goodluck Consensus Group, like everyone else, has been campaigning for the return of Goodluck Jonathan to restore the peace on earth needed to put the country back on the path of economic prosperity and development.
Jonathan served as President of Nigeria from 2010 to 2015. He lost the 2015 presidential election to Buhari and was the first sitting president in Nigerian history to admit defeat in an election. He conceded before the 36-state results were announced. Jonathan said in a statement he issued on March 31, 2015, that “no one’s ambition is worth the blood of no Nigerian.”
If many remember, some Nigerians and other experts attended a conference at Harvard in 2002. They suggested possible solutions to the nine critical problems of Nigerian governance: over-centralization, lack of transparency, lack of economic diversification, corruption, sharia (enforcement of Islamic law), lack of human security, human rights, and a national conference to discuss constitutional reform and leadership.
In recent times, Nigeria is facing a myriad of socio-economic/political problems that hamper the peace, security, and progress of the nation. Electoral irregularities, such as disruption of electoral processes (ballot box theft), vote-buying, falsifying election results, corruption, youth unrest, kidnapping, terrorism (Boko Haram attacks), clashes between farmers and herders, resulting in food shortages for undemocratic population growth, unemployment, lack of economic diversification, and general violence have been on the rise.
A political interest research group known as the Fourth Dimension Cloud Survey (4-DCP) revealed in its Second Quarter Special Report (1) signed by Researcher, Dr. Richard Audi, that: “Based on coordinated research conducted by specialists to determine the political direction of Nigeria and that of Nigerians. expectations in the 2023 presidential election with particular reference to behind-the-scenes developments among political parties, groups, ethnic and religious groups, and the permutation are obviously in favor of former President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan (GEJ).
“All political actors are waiting. Leaders of ethnic nationalities and religious groups have expressed their willingness to put aside all differences and work with GEJ because he is a man of peace and can also be trusted,” the report says.
The report added: “However, one thing that is not certain in the behind-the-scenes engagements between political players is the end result of all the permutations, and that is whether Jonathan will eventually succumb to the pressure, accept and declare to run. ”
However, many Nigerians have publicly expressed their sincere convictions that the country is in a major political and economic quagmire and requires a leader and statesmanlike Jonathan to reconcile and bring the people together again.
In 2011, he got around 59 percent of the vote, securing an outright victory and avoiding the need for a second round. Reforming Nigeria’s electoral process had been one of Jonathan’s goals, and international observers praised this election for being largely transparent, free, and fair.
Jonathan’s first full term as president was largely dominated in the Northeast, led by the militant group Boko Haram. Their acts of terror intensified during the Jonathan administration and despite the government taking steps such as declaring states of emergency in the worst affected areas and attempting mediation, the group’s violence continued unabated until a regional force was formed. and pursued the group in earnest beginning in February 2015.
The call to Jonathan, although he has yet to receive any response from him, may sound like that of Obasanjo, who said he was once reluctant to be in political power.
“I was trained as a soldier. One of my training is that military service and politics don’t go hand in hand and I stayed true to that. As I stuck to the separation between military service and politics, the power began to persecute me. I ran and ran until I couldn’t escape the grasp of the power,” he said.
Source Credit: NAN
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