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March 02, 2023

AFRICA NEWS: CANDIDATE PETER OBI, US GOVERNMENT AND NIGERIAN PRESIDENTIAL ELECTIONS

I will start by saying that it is rather unwise to reflexively assume that a colour revolution is being planned whenever one sees or hears the US government, its European allies, and its media propagandists making certain remarks about the internal politics of a country.

As a Nigerian, I can certainly say that I have seen no evidence that US or EU nations are meddling in the general elections. One must not assume that a US State Department video or a comment from an EU bureaucrat is evidence of such. Unsolicited commentary on the elections of other countries (including that of Nigeria) is given for the USA and the EU who arrogate themselves the status of The Global Guardians of Democracy

Nigeria is not Venezuela, Nicaragua or Iran. There is nothing at stake for the Western countries in the elections taking place in Nigeria. For one thing, most Nigerians are reflexively pro-Western. For another, the entire political class of Nigeria (corrupt and incorrupt) are totally enchanted by the West.

None of the candidates in Nigeria's elections is anti-Western. This is not peculiar to Nigeria. With certain exceptions (South Africa and Zimbabwe), most anglophone Africans are quite pro-Western. Of course, this doesn't mean they are hostile to China or Russia.

Western mainstream media support for one candidate, Peter Obi, has more to do with the fact that he seemingly emerged from nowhere to run a brilliant election campaign powered by social media engagement, which has attracted young educated Nigerians tired of corruption.

But Peter Obi did not emerge from nowhere. Despite the Western media not knowing him until he began to run for Presidential Office as a third party candidate, Peter Obi has been around for a long time.

He was the former governor of Anambra State in Eastern Nigeria who had the rare reputation of not being corrupt. He also has a long history of being an underdog candidate who had successfully used the law courts to reverse the results of elections rigged against him by pro-establishment political parties.

The former banker and businessman had contested governorship elections of Anambra state in April 2003 as an outsider and a third party candidate. Despite polls showing he was likely to win, a candidate of the pro-establishment Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) was declared winner and elected governor.

This sparked a lengthy court battle, which the ended in March 2006 with the Nigerian Federal Court of Appeal declaring him the rightful winner of the 2003 governorship elections. As a result of this court ruling, the sitting Anambra State governor (belonging to PDP) was ousted three years into his four-year tenure to make way for Peter Obi to take over.

Seven months into his tenure as governor, on 2 November 2006, Peter Obi was impeached by Anambra State legislature made up primarily of lawmakers from the establishment PDP. This resulted in yet another lengthy court battle that ended with his reinstatement as governor on 9 February 2007.

That same year, the Electoral Commission declared that Peter Obi had completed the four-year tenure allotted to a state governor despite having been in office for only one year.

The electoral body had argued that the three years already served by his ousted predecessor combined with his own one-year service amounted a completion of the four-year tenure. Peter Obi disagreed, saying that the four-year-tenure he had won in 2003, only started running after the March 2006 court ruling that put him in office.

For the third time, Peter Obi was ousted as governor on 29 May 2007. While he was in court challenging his ouster, the electoral body conducted governorship elections in Anambra State which was won by landslide by another establishment PDP candidate amidst serious allegations of vote rigging.

On 14 June 2007, the Nigerian Supreme Court declared the May 2007 governorship election null and void, contending that Peter Obi's tenure as governor started in March 2006 and would end in March 2010. Once again, another sitting governor of the PDP was forced to resign, after a month in office, to pave way for the restoration of Peter Obi.

With the rest of his term in office as governor undisturbed by political skullduggery, Peter Obi amassed a reputation as a frugal and non-corrupt administrator, and it did not take long for him to come to the attention of many Nigerians living outside the boundaries of Anambra State. At the end of his first term in March 2010, he was relected to serve a second term of 4 years.

After his second (final) term as state governor expired in March 2014, Peter Obi disappointed many of his supporters by abandoning third party politics to become a member of the establishment Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). He had reasoned that his best chance of winning Presidential office was joining the powerful party of his former political enemies.

But Peter was wrong. The PDP never forgave nor forgot. And his chance of contesting the 2022 Presidential primaries of the PDP was scuttled, forcing him to return once again to third party politics.

Running for any office in Nigeria as a third party candidate is as hard as it is in Europe or North America.

For one thing, it is a near impossibility to match the financial arsenal deployed for public campaigning by the two establishment parties, namely: Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and the All Progressives Congress (APC).

For another, the third party candidates do not have access to the vast political machines operated by establishment parties for the purpose of getting out the vote in places where voter apathy is rife.

However, Peter Obi was able to compensate for these deficiencies by using social media to appeal to the youth who represent 75% of all newly registered voters added to the electoral roll for the 2023 elections.

Perhaps due to their status as septugarians, the two establishment candidates--Bola Tinubu of APC and Abubakar Atiku of PDP-- never appreciated the need to use facebook, whatsapp and twitter extensively to reach their followers. Or maybe, they didn't care. After all, their parties had vast political machines across the country, which could easily harvest votes by hook or crook.

In any case, Peter Obi's slick social media campaign soon caught the attention of US corporate media, prompting questionable polls commissioned by the Washington Post and New York Times.

I call these polls, which claimed Peter Obi would win, questionable because they were aimed at respondents living in the large cities at the expense of those living in smaller towns and rural villages. (53% of Nigerians live in urban centres. The remainder live in rural areas).

Despite pulling off a surprise win in Lagos, Peter Obi is still running behind the two establishment candidates in other parts of the country.

There has been allegations of fraud and vote rigging due to delays in transmitting the results of ballot counting for each polling station to the website of the Electoral Commission.

Peter Obi's supporters had been quite vocal with these allegations, which are now being amplified by the other candidate, Atiku Abubakar of the PDP, who is also losing to Bola Tinubu of the APC.

I count myself as one of Peter Obi’s many supporters. Nevertheless, I think it is prudent to exercise some caution at this stage with regards to allegations flying all over the place.

In my own humble opinion, despite multiple cases of violence and ballot stuffing, the 2023 general election has gone relatively well, especially in comparison to several previous elections.

I believe the problems experienced in the general elections have as much to do with computer glitches and clumsy handling of new electronic equipment as with well-documented attempts to manipulate the election results.

The electoral body had replaced the biometric finger-printing machines used in the 2015 general elections to verify the identity of each voter with the even more sophisticated machines that combine fingerprinting with facial recognition technology for the 2023 elections.

Some years ago, the electoral body had stopped the practice of collecting ballot boxes from individual polling stations and transporting them to a central collation centre for counting and tallying. Most ballot stuffing took place while the ballot boxes were inside vehicles en route to the central collation centres or after the ballot boxes had arrived in the gigantic halls used as collation centres.

Now, ballot papers are no longer allowed to leave the polling station where they were cast. Once voting hours are over, ballot papers are counted right inside the polling stations in the presence of the voters who are encouraged to stick around after voting to witness the counting process.

The results of each polling station is then uploaded electronically onto the website of the electoral body where they can be viewed by voters across the country in real time.

However, as one would expect, the system failed to operate properly. Many polling stations claimed difficulties in uploading election results to the website, prompting strong allegations of fraud, which may yet lead to post-election violence.

What ever happens, I want to make it clear that it would be a mistake to confuse possible post-election riots with a colour revolution.

Colour revolutions never happen spontaneously. You need a lot of time to create and nuture the right non-governmental organisation (NGO). You need to identify which people are suitable to lead such an NGO. Only after you have done these, can you activate such an NGO to do a colour revolution.

I see no evidence that such an NGO exist in Nigeria. And why would there be need for one in a country that is already very pro-Western?

UPDATE: Since writing this article, Bola Tinubu, former governor of Lagos State, has been declared winner of the Nigerian Presidential election.

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A quick commentary on the "Piss Summit"
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My Fellow Duranianss.

Yes, it's happened again. I have been assaulted by a vicious Malware Bot Virus or whatever 911 Socks is and this thing is bad ! 

However I wanted to give you a "peace" of my mind concerning the "Piece" or piss, as Elensky calls it, as this thing fell to pieces before it even happened.

Coincidentally on the very SAME DAY  this crap happened Saudi Arabia DROPPED the US Petrodollar as a buying currency and NO ONE absolutely NO ONE is talking about this fact anywhere !!!

 

Hope to see you all asap.

 

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You can access Telegram for web, desktop or mobile here: https://telegram.org/

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