A plausible way to justify how the candidates of the political parties react or how they handle physical attacks would be something like this: “they signed it” or “they knew what they were getting into” or – and this is probably the most common -“. It’s Nigerian politics, nothing new.” But one cannot worry about the health and safety of these politicians. In this case, the state of health goes beyond the physical (although one should be worried) but also the mental.
On a normal day, these people wouldn’t be traveling by road, mixing with so many crowds, or doing anything that might involve even the slightest risk, but alas, a requirement for campaigns.
An incident that comes to mind is the case of Shinzo Abe, which happened shot dead up close and was killed while giving a speech at a political campaign event in July. Another incident that comes to mind is the recent attack on Imran Khan, the former Prime Minister of Pakistan shot in the leg in a protest march at the beginning of the month. He was hit after a gunman opened fire in the protest area.
Then there is the case of Atiku Abubakar, the PDP presidential candidate, whose convoy has been attacked twice while on campaign missions, as if he was not “attacked” enough to cause concern within the party. Again, this is a requirement for the campaign.
Valleys of the shadow of death
One thing these candidates look for when planning their campaign rallies isn’t the crowd. It’s key to all outputs, like the only inventory needed. On campaign trips with presidential candidates, aides could be heard asking people on the ground, “how’s the turnout?”, “is there a lot?” or “how are our numbers?”. Whether the crowd is organic or inorganic (an article for another day) doesn’t matter at this point.
The team needs the crowd for two main reasons. One, for the validation and satisfaction of the candidate telling himself that he is loved by the people and will be voted for by the people. And two, for photography. Really, what’s a campaign rally without long shots where cameras are positioned to capture the heads of people in attendance – which will then be shared on social media to pepper the opposition parties – with captions like “massive”. crowd” and “thousands of followers” or even “a large crowd”.
So for Atiku, it is not out of place to perhaps wish for a large crowd that will cheer from the airport to the campaign ground. only he wanted the right people. The one who would be waving, shouting and clapping at every sentence he uttered, not the one who would throw stones at his convoy and destroy vehicles with sticks.
Atiku and his entourage were leaving the Shehu Palace in Borno for Ramat Square for the presidential rally. attack by suspected thugs. It is said that one person died and several were injured. Campaign spokesman Dino Melaye announced the attack and said no fewer than 74 supporters were injured in the process, while more than 100 vehicles in the convoy were vandalized. He also accused the All Progressive Congress (APC) of protecting the robbers who attacked them.
It was the second time in three weeks that the PDP group would be attacked.
Last month, suspected thieves He invaded the PDP campaign rally In Kaduna, they attacked the crowd with sticks and machetes, leaving many injured. And, as expected, the party blame the APC for attack
Although one would think it normal to blame an opposing party for attacks, a Check out PRNigeria it actually showed that Atiku’s convoy was attacked by youths identified as APC supporters in Maiduguri – witnesses who spoke to the paper reported. And although some people were injured, there was insufficient evidence to prove that 74 PDP supporters were hospitalized and 100 cars were vandalized.
Meanwhile, the Borno state police said there was no attack Atiku’s convoy but the Inspector General of Police, Alkali Baba, said the police have done it create a group to investigate the attack.
At this point, different theories could be used to explain the attacks, especially since they happened in states controlled by the APC. They already believe that there is an assassination attempt under the attacks, a theory that Atiku’s loyalists and supporters would adhere to.
Former APC Deputy National Publicity Secretary Timi Frank, he thinks the theory He said the spate of attacks is more than a coincidence and called on President Muhammadu Buhari to warn his party at the state level. Mr. Frank called for the arrest of the Kaduna APC governorship candidate, Uba Sani, following the attack on PDP supporters in Kaduna.
Another theory could be jealousy and fear of the ruling party. Jealousy and fear of the growing number of residents loyal to Atiku that this may affect the votes in the 2023 general election. The fear of this becoming a reality is further exacerbated by religious and ethnic factors.
Such allegations or theories can be made much more credible by the deafening silence of the ‘accused party’. By now, one would hope that Festus Keyamo has assured that the APC is not behind the attacks.
Moreover, if there is any truth to the allegations, it means that some of these candidates have no respect for the peace agreement they signed before campaign activities began. While the PDP has said will apply The National Peace Commission, chaired by former head of state Abdulsalam Abubakar, is held by the New People’s Party of Nigeria asked the president The state governor described the call to order as outrageous, barbaric, reprehensible after the attack and intended to undermine the nation’s nascent democracy ahead of the polls.
A deeper valley
tiku has many more APC controlled states to take his campaign. This gives him more reason to worry, in addition to the attacks and unrest he is receiving from the G-5.
Last week, Atiku had to address the aggrieved governors and their demand for “equity, fairness and justice”, as Rivers State Governor Nyesom Wike would say. Technically, it is the resignation of the National President Iyorchia Ayu.
Atiku had to face Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue State who has grown louder in recent weeks, perhaps a deep concentration of the Wike factor.
In an explosion, Mr. Ortom rejected Atiku’s presidential bid and said anyone who supports Atiku is an enemy of the state. He also stated that he would not accept Atiku’s presidential bid because residents of the state are still killing Fulanis.
“To hell with Atiku and anyone who helps him. They should go and say it. You want to be a slave to a Fulani. It is better to die. Anyone who supports Atiku is an enemy of Benue,” he said angrily. “I will never support a Fulani to become president. If there is another person who is willing to work with me and ensure the security of my people, I will work with him.”
He, however, he apologized days later, after the group held a meeting with Bauchi Governor Bala Mohammed and told followers not to read meaning into his words.
“That’s not what I meant,” he said. “It would be a logical fallacy if people took it the way I did… to those offended, it wasn’t what I meant, I’m sorry.”
Mr. Wike also said that the G-5 are ready for reconciliation and that they never closed the door to that. He said that they only want to do the right thing and the party lives up to its mantra: equity, fairness and justice.
The added weight on Atiku’s shoulders is the pressure to form with the G-5 and get their support. Although he said he would press ahead with his campaigns, many, including candidates for various party positions and G-5 states, have said the absence of a governor could cost them their own ambitions at the ballot box.
It is not clear how Atiku intends to reconcile with the G-5 without accepting his only demand – Ayu’s head on a plate.
As he continues his campaigns, he would have to face – physically and mentally – possible attacks from both inside and outside the party. Clearly, it’s going to take more than Dino’s tantrums and hilarious songs to keep the demons at bay.
Among the many national challenges facing Nigeria, which do you think the next president should focus on?
— Premium Times (@PremiumTimesng) October 5, 2022
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