Nigerian politics has become the province of the mad and near insane. True to this spirit of perplexing mania, leaders of the APC caretaker committee seem intent on breaking back into the asylum after having been given a free pass out.
There they were,the leaders of the governing party. But they were not holding court waiting as desperate beggers and opportunists seek to cross-carpet from the ragged PDP to the,still ascendant, APC.
Instead, as seems to be the norm in this Bedlam, the conquerors go to lick the shoes of the conquered.
Thus, the sly Caretaker Chairman and his rowdy sidekick, Governor Yahaya Bello, paid a royal visit to the reigning lunatic of Nigerian politics, Femi Fani-Kayode. They went to his house; he did not go to theirs. They begged him to join the APC. He did not beg them.
Social media was abuzz with pictures of these two, erstwhile APC leaders cavorting, guffawing and basically cooing over FFK. For a moment, I thought perhaps this visit was an instance of humanitarian charity. Perhaps Bello was going to apply the same potion he used to prevent COVID in his state to cure FFK of his many imbalances.
Yet, I was wrong because I was thinking much too rationally to ever discern the depths of the swamp that these men call their minds.
They went there not to cure FFK but to hail him. They went there to impress his particular mad talents into their employ. Unfortunate but telling, this one visit encapsulates all that is wrong with the state of Nigerian politics, or so I thought. More was to come.
Proving himself capable of even worse judgment, Governor Bello followed up his visit with gave a press conference at which he joyfully proclaimed that FFK had joined the APC. Bello was visibly pleased with himself,in the manner of an ugly suitor who has somehow landed the comely bride.
The way he beamed, one would have thought that he had discovered the alchemist’s secret for turning lead to gold or had constructed one of the seven wonders of the political world.
Instead, the ‘achievement’ of which he was so proud was seemingly nothing more than having convinced an unstable entity with no electoral value to join the governing political party.
However, to his sheer embarrassment, Bello was publicly rebuffed by FFK who subsequently confirmed that he had no intention of leaving the PDP.
So, not only did this loony pseudo-politician exhibit more rational sense than Bello and his chairman, FFK also ratted them out as outright liars. Such is the way of ruin when a madman must instruct sitting governors in the ways of honesty and logic.
FFK knew, of course, that he has no place in the APC. He has spent the past 7 years hectoring President Buhari. He has thrown every odious insult and name at Buhari. The Devil himself would be embarrassed by some of the words that have spewed from FFK’s mouth.
Even FFK realizes this. Even for a mercenary such as he, there are certain things that simply fall beyond the pale. Also, FFK been a member of the APC before. His short stay was, however, particularly unrewarding to him personally.
He joined because had been shunted aside in the PDP. Hoping he could manipulate his way to the top of the then-fledging APC, he cast his die with them. However, the APC returned that same die to him upon discovering all of its six sides contained the identical number of dots. FFK was and always has been a political fraud.
He is empty and unprincipled bombast. He has no electoral value. The people who know him the most will follow him the least. Unable to sway the voters at his pooling booth, the man has never run for office because he knows full well the outcome would not suit him.
Every ministerial post he has held shares one thing in common; he left the post in worse condition than when he found it. He is a walking scandal and a menace to good governance.
That the caretaker Chairman and Bello would pine after such a man reveals unworthiness. They are loose and unrestrained. Lacking the requisite judgment, they visit damage to themselves and the party they claim to lead.
They are too blinded by their own machinations to realize that courting FFK is a gross insult to President Buhari who shattered the party constitution to given them their current assignments. They repay him by panting after his most acerbic and insulting critic.
They signal that they care little about the invectives FFK throw at the president or how it may undermine his ability to govern. In fact, by asking FFK to join the party, they legitimate the criticism because insisting that he join the party means he will improve it somehow.
In a word, their actions suggest that they do not see the APC as Buhari’s party now that he has appointed them. They see it as their own. They courted FFK not for the good of the party, nor for Buhari’s peace of mind.
They did so simply because they believed the move would advance their selfish ambitions. As such the caretaker Chairman and his cohort have proven themselves in need of strict, disciplinarian daily minder.
Fani-Kayode is, a laughing-stock among most Nigerians and a badge of shame to those who go to strange lengths to associate with him. Why then would the Buni-Bello duo seek him out?Clearly, not for anything good.
Their stratagem was to bring him in to help make a royal mess of the APC in the southwest.
They want to fracture the APC into little pieces in this region. Why would the leaders of a party wilfully hurt it? They may be party leaders but they care little for the party.
To them it is but a useful vehicle, a vector for their continued rise. Their ploy is to confuse and weaken things in the southwest, that it will be harder for that region to present a united front behind a single presidential candidate.
In this way, they hope that they can wrest the presidential nomination for one of their group come 2023.
Thus, they sought to hire the jester but not so that he might come to their feast but to make chaos in someone else’s home. It was no coincidence that they visited FFK inviting him to return to the APC after he wrote another one of his incendiary diatribes going after AsiwajuTinubu’s purported 2023 ambitions.
The APC was established as a progressive party. It was built on the idea that Nigerians must finally defeat the politics of selfishness and division in order to deliver a new vision of freedom, justice and prosperity for all.
However, the Buni-Bello tandem do not care about the party’s mission. If they did, the very notion of playing suitor to FFK would have been abhorrent to them. Instead, they chose to fawn over him because they had in mind that they could entice him to do their dirty work.
Yet in this instance, even the madman found their ideas too crazy for him to abide. The Buni-Bello tandem is a toxin to the progressive impulses of the party. If they have their way, the APC will become indistinguishable from the PDP in how it operates and what it represents.
It will become nothing but a clearinghouse of political ambitions, a marketplace of intrigue. The party is reaching the point of critical decision. Whether the progressive “Luta” will continue or will it be overtaken by lunacy and unrestrained personal agendas.
Beware APC, you are being poisoned from within! Even FFK the madman realized this and he ran away from the danger.
Kafaru is a Public Affairs analyst based in Abuja.