Abikus in the house of power

Those who are familiar with the verses of the poem, Abiku by John P. Clark would vividly recall the sorrow that Abiku unfolded to his poor mother. And for those who didn’t comprehend the above verses, the great poet states the torment that an ill-fated child brings to his relatives by his constant attitude of coming to earth and dying at any given time. The poet feels the agony of the mother and therefore cautions the spirit child to avoid flimsy excuses of tormenting his mother unnecessarily.

 Studying the above poem in another way, the abiku-like character depicts the political behaviour of those in our house of power today. In other term, Dr. Reuben Abati referred to them as ‘Recycled politicians’. 

Visible for those who are conversant with national issues, those abikus have inflicted on us many hardships. The month of July and August could be regarded as defection months of the year, 2018.  


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The culture of defecting from one political party to another is not new to Nigerian politicians. The same incident happened prior to the 2015 general election and such has reappeared again. Ironically, some famous political figures have changed political party more than five times! They changed their main political party to another whenever an attempt is made to oppose their respective opinions or marginalize them. 

Sadly, our political parties lack sound and radical political ideologies which is why we have many abikus with us. 

Critical political analysis has it that some governors and legislators dumped the ruling party for the opposition parties purposefully for their personal ambitions. This means that their self-interest is more important to them than national interest and progress of their people. 

Worst still, some defectors moved to the ruling party to get out of the EFCC trial net.  These abikus are not after the senseless killings going on in the country or the abject poverty in their various constituencies. The world poverty clock recently ranked Nigeria as number one and instead of Nigerian politicians to form policies or sponsor bills that will drastically reduce poverty rate, they are engaged in political games.

There is saying that, ‘A child that says his mother will not sleep, his own eyelids will remain opened’. Therefore, we should keep our eyes on them; by interrogating them till they put on their thinking caps by providing good governance to all and sundry. As the next general elections approach, we pray and hope that we get it right.

Hassan Imran wrote from Jos-North, Plateau State.


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