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Abdussallami Abubakar, Chairman Peace Comittee

At 39 years of age, I have been privileged to have obtained 16 years working experience non stop and these years are spread around all the geopolitical zones of the country and those who know me know I’m open minded enough to mingle deep into people I come across with a view of integrating and enriching my life living strategies and skills. This makes me loaded enough to understand the demography of Nigeria as well as a fair understanding of the likely outcomes of events related to national development. In these years, I equally made mistakes owing to certain misconceptions and the outcomes of it have added to my experiences.

The key tool to ensure such development of a country in a democracy is politics and the understanding and/or lack of  determines the stability that would create a room to develop or not. However, the participation in politics has over the years been tainted by economic insecurities and greed to the point where people appear to have not learnt any mistakes regarding the choices they’ve made but I also understand that the opinion of the majority of voters are decided by the elites who control them by way of economy, belief and tribe and the question will now be whether these  elites have seen the writing on the wall regarding the likely outcomes of 2023 or not?.

The key among the problems of the nation at this period is disunity but those who are comfortable in their corners are blinded to see any problems with this and we should remind them. The insecurities happening all over the country are a result of decayed morals and disunity and nothing more. When so much hatred has been disseminated into people to the extent that it has become a habit, what do you expect the offsprings of such individuals to be, also full of hate and such hate has led to  mutual suspicion over the time and finally to killings and unrest. No part of the country is isolated from this problem and having the potentials of graduating from inter communal to inter country if not managed well because at the moment, no one is talking about it except some of the candidates and it resonates with me.

Some people mistake infrastructural development as the real development but it is too much love for luxury and enjoyment that makes them see it like that. A country like Gambia does not have as much infrastructure as Nigeria but the Europeans consider it as their best destination for vacation as against a lagos or Calabar that have same beaches but lack security, sanity  and serenity. So they get enough FOREX to carry out their economic activities while we’re here and broke of it. This should amplify the need for peace and unity.

We are now faced with elections around the corner and the arguments appear as some have forgotten or don’t know about these very serious issues and are about making same mistakes, now lemme break down what a mistake would do to eroding any hope left of a country called Nigeria, I would have added United country but the reality is Nigeria is not United as this moment, the cracks and red flags are too glaring for anyone to see.

Anyone who votes you based on some creed or personal expectations will naturally develop a sense of entitlement and once such expectation do not start to come in the first three months of administration, agitations start and ego will not let the president who was insincere enough to use divisions to win to agree to correct those perceived injustices and trouble starts, this is in addition to the so many that are currently on the ground and then your guess about the state of the nation will be as good as mine- CHAOS.

Therefore, more than ever before, Nigeria only needs competence, experience and a nationalist who genuinely believes in the oneness and indivisibility of Nigeria and such person who comes with this has to also come with clean hands from day one and not any form of skewed tendencies  and whether the voters understand this or not remains to be seeing in the coming days but the word of caution must be sounded!!!

May God bless our dear and beloved country Nigeria, some of us have a passion for her wellbeing!!

Hashim Suleiman



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Southern Coalition and Middle Belt at one of their meetings

It is no longer news to any keen observer of the political space that since about 2012 till now, the southern coalition comprising of the PANDEF, OHANEZE AND AFENIFERE have been making attempts at trying to co-opt the middle belt forum to form a part of them with a view to forming some sort of political alliance perhaps to whittle down the influence of the very politically powerful northern Nigeria. However, till date we have obviously not seen or felt the effect of such efforts and could at best be considered a political mis-strategy.

One could have thought the southern Nigeria should by now have learnt enough of politics from the north but it doesn’t seem so. On a generality, Nigerians have become so entangled that it’ll be so difficult to dismember. It is also so with all the regions especially the northern region which is more vast and diverse than the others because the leaders of the region have for a long time enjoyed political power devoid of sentiment. Jeremiah Useni from Plateau state was at some point the most powerful person in the administration of Sani Abacha. Even recently, Boss Mustapha is the Secretary to the Government of the federation. How then is someone going to succeed in truly dividing these elites under such a bond?

The only thing the narratives by these southern leaders could do is to divide the voters to sway some little of them  to their side but such votes would be insignificant to cause any harm to the northern agenda. Every time they hold their meetings, I pay keen attention to the members of the middle belt forum who attend and have never found any political heavy weight that was capable of bringing forth any votes or influence. Honestly, I have hardly recognized any of those that are called to attend such meetings as leaders of the middle belt.

Such kinds of activities leaves one to believe the popular saying that the southern Nigeria has not still learnt from the best despite being together in this union for over 60 years now. Politics is a science that requires research and strategy and one thing the north knows how to do is ensuring high level of inclusion especially for the minorities of the region. One cannot understand this till you look very closely. Do not forget that the secretary of the Sardauna of Sokoto was Sunday Awoniyi from the Kabba area. That’s how far the northern elites have moved to ensure inclusion.

The propaganda could only do so little owing to the realities enumerated above. The chairman of the northern governors forum today is the governor of plateau state who belongs to the class of those that the southern coalition has been working tirelessly to co-opt. Another major identity of the entire coalition is their affiliation to the PDP and that also makes them appear as those people who were then helping Goodluck Jonathan to sway the votes of the northern minorities and it never worked and never will. You could consider them as the major mis-advisers of GEJ who led him to loose Favour with the northern Nigeria and ultimately to his loosing the election. One would even assume they have learnt from this but their recent activities till date proves they are still on same lost cause.

Politics is about numbers and such numbers are not forced or artificially built, there has to be careful bridge building through guarded utterances and sincere reach outs. There has to be deliberate efforts at upholding agreements and trusts coupled with mutual respect. The major attribute that has been affecting the south and its politics is sense of entitlements. There has always been this notion that the northerners are illiterates and can’t pull any stunts and the northerners have been hiding behind such and throwing political punches to the south and such will continue unless there’s a reversal on such notions and replacing them with sound political strategies full of engagements and respect.

The 2023 elections are coming which are perhaps supposed to be the turn of the south but the undoings of all or most of the potential candidates for the presidency from the region is taking a toll on them and their sell-ability to the extent that most feel they’ll still be a reemergence of another northerner for the presidency. Governor Dave Umahi has recently shifted grounds to the APC and the bashing he’s receiving is not small thing when In reality there is a thin line between the PDP and the APC. The criticisms could be seen to have some coloration of hate  and such is very inimical to political progress. What Dave is doing is trying to build that bridge that is essential to succeed in Nigeria’s political space but whether his people will reason along that line and support him with the votes is story for the future to tell.

Nigeria’s political space is a very interesting one and only the smartest and the most inclusive benefit most of it.

May God bless Nigeria.

Hashim Suleiman