Avec L’amour Du Niger

Seye Akanmu-Bode

With love from Niger otensibly was the message from the two Nigerien governors that came calling in Kano during the week. I can imagine what the Nigerian government and its military apparatus would have been saying by now if it was the PDP that had in its midst the governors from the neighbouring Niger to the Kano rally of the APC. Just two weeks ago,the international community had a cause to warn the government on the need for a free and credible election this February in Nigeria. The Nigerian government took offence with such interference in our domestic politics.Garba Shehu, spokesman to the FG launched into a tirade ,even reminding the international community of the might of our military to defend our territorial integrity.

The US,UK and the EU are state and supranational actors respectively with keen interest in what happens not only in Nigeria but the whole over. When the genocide took place in Rwand, the international community was accused of not doing enough and early to avert the ugly incidents. They learnt from it and vowed never to allow such. So they have every reason to interfere in our polity especially as we continue to behave as toddlers in global community.This same interference being condemned by the APC led to the pressure on the GEJ led government to conduct a credible election in 2015 and ensured a smooth transfer of power to the current APC led government. In a country where the President and his party are desperate to win by all foul means, a situation in which the government has made no pretence to subjugate the citizens by unleashing all coercive agents of the state against opposition members and critical members of the country, not to talk of the assaults on democratic institutions like the National Assembly and the judiciary, the international community surely has more than a huge role to play to help the citizens against a repressive regime.

In the USA ,Russia was accused of meddling in the Trump election. This is without any Russian politician ,not to talk of a governor of any Russian state going to the US to campaign for Trump. The APC has the effrontery to look at us in the eye in its legendary hubristic mien that “we can do what we like” . It is shameful how hitherto respected people have turned into something else just because of filthy political lucre. Nuhu Ribadu comes to mind here.He was reported to have said no offence in importing Nigerien governors into Nigeria. Does Ribadu know the consequences and perceptions of such action? It is usually alleged that foreigners from neighbouring Niger and Chad do vote in the North. And weeks to the election, governors of Niger came to grace the APC rally ostensibly to tell Nigeriens where they should vote( APC) in the election. If APC or anyone says there is nothing wrong in this, can the they accept Greg Abbot, the Governor of Texas to come to Lagos and join the Atiku PDP campaign train? How would they view such? I have neither heard nor seen this brazen immoral and grave undermining of our election and national psyche by the APC. Even the Nigerien government can’t ever allow a Nigerian governor attend a political rally in their country because they respect their citizens and are so proud of their country. Like OBJ said,the price of liberty is eternal vigilance. Residents of Kano should be vigilant on February 16 to thwart foreigners influencing our votes through illegal voting.

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