Another June 12 Debacle Coming?

Larry Happiday


General Muhammadu Buhari, the civilian president in waiting?

Every expectation of the occupants of the Nigerian seat of government have come to nought. Everywhere the president has gone his publicists had come out to announce the endorsement of their candidate by socio-political groups, retired heads of state and other prominent Nigerians. On almost all the cases, the affected endorsers have come out to rebutt their alleged endorsement.

The Presidency of Nigeria is turning to a most comical institution, observers are beginning to see a semblance to the 1993 Presidential elections that were stiffled by the military. This time, the military roles are being played by the militants or former economic saboteurs who have become the powers behind the throne. In a reversal of roles, the incumbent is bent on returning to power to serve another four years contrary to his promise to serve only one term. He is from the Southern part of the country as the late Moshood Abiola, who was denied the opportunity to excercise his mandate. On the other hand, there a retired coup plotter and head of the military government, General Muhamadu Buhari, that sacked the civilian government of Shehu Shagari, who is about to make history as the next elected president. Unfortunately, he has too many bagages hanging on his back , not leaset of which is his vaunted integrity and sincerity which has vented panic across all lines of Nigeria’s elite class.

Gen. Babangida

General Ibrahim Babangida, he annulled the 1993 election

General Buhari is not being haunted by his records as military head of state as those have lost their currency in the face of the crass failure of governance by the incumbent  Dr. Goodluck Jonathan, the zoologist turned politician.


General Buhari, the military head of state that led the 1984 coup against the civilian government of Shagari

Buhari is not being pursued by the families of drug pushers who were killed using a retrospective law; neither is he being pursued by the spectre of human rights violations alleged committed by his government. Yet, this gaunt looking military retiree looks every step of the way like a man who would have the fate of Abiola visited on him. He may win but would he get power?

The General has an impeccable and shining record of public service that his opponents have been unable to dent. In Nigeria, being honest is vice that a politician should not have. This mortal sin is what may deny him the power that he so very nearly has gotten as a civilian.


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