The North, The average Nigerian Northerner is more politically exposed than his Southern counterpart.
In the North, they are taught the rudiments of the art of politics at a very tender age. Sometimes, they are taught politics in the places of worship. As I have noticed, Islam has a bit of politics intertwined in its teachings. The average Northerner has a transistor radio that is tuned to BBC Hausa. Politics is taught in the local language, Hausa.
The North understands that in politics, you sometimes compromise or dialogue when you meet a stronger opposition. And when you meet a feeble opposition, you crush them ruthlessly. In Politics, forgive me to say, there are no sentiments.
An example is President Muhammadu Buhari who as Head of State in 1983 and President in 2015 has systematically crushed his opposition, hereby paving a smooth road to victory in 2019. Muhammadu Buhari knows what Power is, and knows how to use it.
A typical Northerner knows that you can cross carpet to achieve your political desire. What matters to the Northerner is the dividends of Power, not the schemes you use to attain power. Hence the the North can through PDP obtain power, and destroy the same PDP if it (The North as a Political bloc) feels cheated out of the power arrangement like in the case of Goodluck Jonathan and the infamous ‘one term agenda’ that led to the departure of PDP Governors to form what we now know as APC.
The North will not obtain power and let that power predominantly favor the South, a case study is the 95% vs 5% analogy of President Muhammadu Buhari. The key word in Politics is ; Interests ! Interests !! Interests !!!
When the North is in power, whatever the South wants will have to be bargained for, not given on a platter of gold.
To garner political power, the politician is allowed the use of propaganda, subtle blackmail, arm twisting, even insults to unsettle and defeat his opposition. That is Politics. Forgive me if I sound Machiavellian but the Bible also says that the Kingdom of God suffereth violence and the Violent take it, by force.
If the Kingdom of suffereth Violence, you can imagine what manner of violence the kingdom of man faces.
Now, the average Nigerian Southerner is overtly sentimental when Politics is the issue. The Southerner wants an Angel to Govern him, The Southerner wants the Perfect Political Party. Hence the South can just label a Party as evil, useless etc .. Forgetting that a Political Party in Nigeria, is just a vehicle to garner Political power. Nothing more, Nothing less.
If a Southern Politician cross carpets from lets say PDP to APC, his kinsmen will be up in arms against him; ”Why did you join our enemy”, ”Don’t you know APC is a Northern Party?”, this will be the slogan of the day.
If a Southerner is by an act of God voted into power as President of the Federal Republic, his core issue will be; how to placate the North. He will build the best roads for the North, Give the North the best Schools, Healthcare .. anything just to placate the North at the detriment of the South.
A case study is the Olusegun Obasanjo administration and that of Goodluck Ebele Jonathan.
The people of Ogun State will tell you that they did not gain anything from the Olusegun Obasanjo administration, even jokingly say ”The road to Obasanjo’s house is not tarred”. In Goodluck Jonathan’s case, his village in Otueke, Bayelsa State was flooded during his time as President, I do not know of any Federal Government project that was situated in Bayelsa.
Goodluck Jonathan, he didn’t know what to do with power. You can imagine a President of Nigeria saying ”If I use 40% of my Presidential Powers, they will call me a dictator”. The Northern President cares not if you call him a dictator or a power drunk individual.. After all, a Leader must be seen to lead and lead well.
An educated southerner will open his buccal cavity and tell you ”I am not interested in Politics” , ”Politics is evil”, ”Politicians are demons” and all other sorts inanities. That is the level political illiteracy that abounds in the South of Nigeria.
A Southerner will forget that everything around him, his food and its prices, Education, place of habitation, Security and sometimes, Faith or rather Religion is affected by the windmills of Politics.
I think it’s high time, the South begins to understand the art of Politics and the art of winning power. I also believe that until the South knows what to do with power when it is obtained, we will continue go round in circles in this quagmire of Political decadence.
Osita Ashiuloka Duru is a Social Media Entrepreneur and a Political Analyst. He writes from @radicalyouthman on twitter and Osita RadicalYouthman Duru on Facebook.