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Jonathan And 2011

By Anthony Akinola Oxford, England   |   01 May 2010   |   10:00 pm  
Sir: The bitter truth is that democracy is a culture governed by a set of rules and standards of behaviour. Even when an agreement, written or unwritten, does not favour our sentiment or emotion, we still have to respect it for what it is. A rule can be changed, but not in the middle of the game.
When President Olusegun Obasanjo sought to extend his tenure against the dictate of our constitution, I was one of those who wrote vigorously against it. I wrote to advise members of his Yoruba community not to support his agenda because it could cost them a loss of their moral authority in national politics. The same moral question will be raised again when controversy over the presidential candidacy of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) rages and the monster of ethnicity confronts.

Someone asked if I thought Acting President Goodluck Jonathan should jettison the zoning arrangement of his party and run for office in 2011. I told this person that as one writer of politics and not that of love stories, I do not deliberately set out to please everyone with what I say or write. If Dr. Jonathan freely subscribed to a political arrangement, respecting the spirit of what had been agreed would not do his image any harm. Remember Nigeria is not America where something of this nature is hardly an issue. Lyndon Johnson succeeded the assassinated John Kennedy in 1963 and went on to win an election of his own in what would have been the second term for Kennedy.

Dr Goodluck Jonathan will be writing a great story for himself if he can preside over free and fair elections in 2011 He will, by doing that, be positioning himself for greater things in the years ahead, He will be the favourite son of our history. The honest truth is that if what befell Alhaji Umaru Musa Yar Adua had befallen General Olusegun Obasanjo about the same time in his presidency I would have been one of those warning the northern members of his party that an agreed arrangement had to be respected notwithstanding So why should anyone expect me to take a different position on this occasion ?



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