ATIKU, THE POLITICAL CALCULATOR
If there is any politician in Nigeria who has never been outshined and over powered in Nigerian politics before; that will certainly be the man who is known as the Turakin Adamawa. A very calm but mobile politician who never stops the chase. A man you can easily refer to as the’ cat with many lives’ base on his antecedents on the Nigerian political arena. He speaks only when necessary but yet never minces words when saying what he thinks should be said. Am talking about no other person but Nigeria’s former vice president, Atiku Abubakar.
He has been on ground for as long as I can remember, fighting for Nigeria’s democracy not just in this current dispensation but right from the military era. Though most of us came to know more about him after he became Nigeria’s vice president in 1999, But the name Atiku became even more popular on the lips of Nigerians during his fight with president Olusegun Obasanjo whom was alleged to be nursing a third term ambition which Atiku was totally against due to his own [Atiku’s] presidential ambition. What baffled most people was how Atiku was able to fight Obasanjo who was not just his boss but also a very powerful former military general without him [Atiku] been made to face political extinction. He contributed in killing the planned third term ambition but was then unable to plot his way back into Aso Rock when a then unknown cool and humble katsina state governor in the person of late Umaru Musa Yar’Adua was brought in to come and clinch the PDP’s presidential ticket.
That move by the PDP only gave Atiku a good reason to hook up with other political big weights in the country to form a strong opposition party in Nigeria, ‘The Action Congress’[AC] ahead of the 2007 general elections. He became the presidential candidate of the AC in the 2007 elections but was defeated by the late Umaru Musa Yar’Adua of the PDP in a globally acclaimed fraudulent election.
Some of us thought that that would be the end of Atiku’s quest for the presidency. But then,he didn’t just prove us wrong, he surprised us when he dumped the AC and returned to the PDP ahead of the 2011 general elections. And yet again, he met another stumbling block [President Goodluck Jonathan] on his way to Aso Rock. He was totally outclassed by the incumbent president who went ahead to win the presidential elections.
Again, most of us waited to hear what he would say or the next step he will take but he kept mute and remained calm. The question that we kept asking ourselves was what will be his next step? Then, sooner than we even expected, the cloud started gathering in the PDP; this certainly would be the resurfacing of the name Atiku in PDP affairs. He came out and wasted no time in complaining about how he was being alienated from the party’s affairs by the party’s leaders. Failure of the Bamanga Turku’s led PDP to address the issues he had raised, instigated Atiku to mobilize a bloc of aggrieved PDP members to stage a walkout during the party’s convention in Abuja last year. They moved on to form the new- PDP which the Information minister Labaran Marku called “the rebel group”.
They tried to have a grip on the national leadership of the party but failed; a move many political analysts believed was a gambit ahead of the 2015 elections. It is often said that “if you can’t beat them, you join them” but in this case most of the new PDP members didn’t win yet they refused to join them, so they left to make the opposition even stronger. Again, the wind of change also blew Atiku away from the PDP to the All Progressive Congress [APC] knowing fully well that it will be difficult to defeat president Jonathan for PDP’s presidential ticket if he decides to contest. He went to the APC quietly calling it a move to save Nigeria’s democracy. Now he is here and everything is going on smoothly, but I can see the clouds gathering again!
It will interest you to know that before recently held convention of the APC, Atiku came out to deny the rumour that the party’s presidential ticket has been zoned to a particular section of the country insisting that everyone has the right to contest for the party’s ticket. Clearly, the implication of this statement is that Atiku as usual is not ruling himself out of the race against most people’s believe that APC’s presidential ticket has already been assembled in Buhari’s hands. Also, you should not forget about a political Party called “People’s Democratic Movement” which many believe is controlled by Atiku hence his plans to use it as a backup plan should he fail to clinch the APC’s presidential ticket. But no one should expect Atiku to declare his 2015 presidential ambitions in a hurry because he only take a step when he has clearly seen that it is time to take such a step. Little wonder he was referred to as THE POLITICAL CALCULATOR at the APC’s convention in Abuja early this month.
He only speak when it’s right for him to speak yet he never mince words when saying what he think should be said. He moves only when he perceives a smooth road that’s why he never stops even when people feel the road has been closed. Indeed, he is a political calculator; that’s why he might retreat but don’t ever expect him to surrender. So watch out for the man called Atiku.
Where will Atiku be after 2015 elections?