“The trouble with Nigeria is simply and squarely a failure of leadership," Prof Chinua Achebe. Newspapers across Nigeria, particularly those owned by Babangida’s cronies, have been awash in the last few weeks of the purported intent of General Babangida to “run” for the Nigerian presidency in 2011. The calculation of the wily general is that as Umaru Yar ‘Adua, the current but gravely ill president, may be too incapacitated to dream of going for a second term, he (IBB) stand a good chance of rigging himself to power under the banner of the evil PDP, which has, unconstitutionally and undemocratically, zoned the presidency of Nigeria to the Northern geopolitical region till 2015. The same thinking would have forced greedy Atiku Abubarkar to jump ship from the AC to the PDP, as he also think the 2011 presidency is there for the PDP taking!
They are all playing these pranks because, they believe, and have long concluded that INEC, under the headship of Iwu, or his likes, would just write and allocate votes to whomsoever the PDP mafias impose as their presidential candidate. The peoples vote will not count in the determination of who become Nigerian leaders, as has been the case since 2003.
No matter how daft Babangida is and I do believe he is very dumb indeed, he ought to have known that in a democratic election, he stood no chance of been elected in his own state, let alone the whole of Nigeria which he battered for Eight full years, turning Nigeria into a leprous state of beggars and a few idle rich which gorged on the state treasury, satisfying their insatiable greed with impunity.
All the trauma still suffered today across Nigeria, including all the political and economic crisis were the result of IBB's 8-year misrule from 1985 to 1993. Babangida was a master in the game of double speak and deceit and he took Nigeria through a round of unending and bogus transition that he never really meant culminating in the loss of over N120Billion ( in today’s money) in a transition programme that ensured the banning and unbanning of perceived “enemy politician” whom he feared might “rock the boat” of his plot to transmute from military to civilian dictator!
Babangida sowed the seed of the current political crisis that threw up and unwell and unfit Yar’Adua causing Nigeria all the stress that made a tiny cabal hold 150 million people hostage for almost 4 months. He made politics and running for political offices so expensive that only his fellow thieving army generals and their proxies are capable of “winning” elections at all levels in Nigeria as election became very heavily monetized. In 1999 when the military was forced to retreat and hand over to civilians, only generals like David Mark, Tunde Ogbeha, Admiral Murtala Nyako, Col Tunde Akogun and their civilian apologists, like Orji Kalu, James Ibori and the likes of Deprie Alamesigha, who made millions as agents of the thieving generals. The political corruption, now mastered by the PDP, where blatant rigging and falsification of election results is the norm were the creation of Babangida as the seed has continued to grow.
Well, Lets wait and see. I know the jungle these nincompoops have turned Nigeria into takes all forms of repeated abuse. If Nigeria was anywhere near a sane society, this man called Babangida should have, at the very least, been serving life jail in Kirikiri prison or some other asylum or jail house (Gashua or that one in the bushes of Cross River state, is it "Ita Oko" they call it?) for institutionalising corruption and the heinous crimes committed against Nigerians, the ultimate of which was his annulment of the only "free and fair" election ever held in Nigeria in 1993.
This man is joker! He has just lost his wife to a lately diagnosed Cancer ailment in the US. Despite the huge cash they spent in the US- all monies stolen from the Nigerian people in his eight years rigmarole as military president, his wife, Marian Babangida still died in a US hospital very recently. I am not sure if his dear Marian had been buried more than six months now. Had IBB an iota of conscience he would still be mourning his wife; not thinking of throwing his hat into the ring in a misguided and fruitless search for Nigerian presidency this late hour in his career. Had he some modicum of conscience he would be saddened by his wives death through cancer and his eight years of the locust, where he could not build a standard hospital for the diagnosis of cancer, which may have saved his wife- early diagnosis do give a chance of cancer cure and care-nor use the gargantuan wealth the country earned under him, particularly the 12.8Billion Gulf war windfall to build Nigeria’s dilapidated infrastructure.
But no, the likes of Babangida think Nigerians are there for continuous raping. These people believe they can have a "buffet" of treasury rip-off and that the stolen cash can buy them anything, including life, but IBB should be in a better position to know, that is if he has anything in his head. Nigerian leaders past and probably present are too dumb to know- Largely big tummies but peanut brains! Had he used his 8 years rule to build one decent hospital where Cancer can be diagnosed, his wife would probably be alive today. But no the man love his "personal economy" and Nigerians can die as much as they can, so no hospitals for the Nigerian as he and his family can jet to France or US for medical treatment with monies stolen from the people, anytime he wants.
Anyway, IBB has been a very foolish man- no brain in the past, but he will be looking to commit suicide if he tries. I think it is those hangers-on- those who made tons of free monies under his reckless rule, and who want more of the “good old days” that are flying this kite, because the man knows in him, that at over 70 years of age, he is a "spent force" as far as the political dynamics of Nigeria pans out, nor matter how convoluted the jungle called Nigeria might be. I don’t think Nigerians should worry much about a Babangida comeback.
By Tony Ishiekwene