President Yar’adua’s Era: A new dawn for the masses?
This pamphlet was originally written by Segun Sango, the General Secretary of the Democratic Socialist Movement (DSM), barely 100 days in power of President Umaru Musa Yar’Adua and then discussed within DSM. Yar’Adua was declared President by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in April 2007 general elections which were marred by unprecedented massive rigging, manipulation, brazen stealing of ballot paper and boxes, etc unparallel in Nigeria’s history.
As a result of 8 years experience of persistent attacks on democratic rights, deliberate disobedience to courts order, vicious attacks on living and working conditions via neo-liberal policies and unmitigated level of corruption amongst others by the Obasanjo regime, there is a widespread believe that Yar’Adua regime will be different.
The conduct of the regime with its so much touted respect for rule of law and its 7-point agenda that it claims will make Nigeria to be one of the 20 biggest economies by 2020 are the basis of the believe that the regime meant well for the country.
The pamphlet therefore x-rays the regime with its 7-point agenda and shows that it is a continuation of Obasanjo capitalist misrule. Instead of being disillusioned, it asks the labour leaders, poor working people, mass organisations, socialists, etc to immediately commence the process that will crystallize the formation of a viable mass working peoples’ party with socialist orientation and programmes that will transform Nigeria along socialist line. It is this kind of party that can fight for the poor masses and wrest power from the present capitalist predators in power and bring permanent decent living and working condition for the mass majority of the people.
Since this pamphlet was written, the “elections” of four governors have been nullified by the Elections Petitions Tribunals for one technical reason or another. As we go to press, the “election” of President Yar’Adua is still being hotly contested by General Muhammadu Buhari and Abubakar Atiku, the ANPP and AC Presidential candidates respectively.
Will this pamphlet therefore remain relevant if President Yar’Adua “election” is nullified by the Election Petitions Tribunal? It has anticipated this poser but concludes that in itself would not fundamentally tilt the balance of political power in favour of the working people and the poor in general.
The pamphlet also contains appendixes which include some of the DSM statements after the farcical exercise dubbed general elections, an exposition on the desirable labour leadership after 2007 elections, Niger Delta, an interview on the now moribund National Conscience Party (NCP) which DSM had worked in and built since its inception in 1994 but had to quit along with most members of the party in Lagos as a result of its take over by the rightwing elements following the resignation of Chief Gani Fawehinmi, the founding National Chairman of the party, in 2004.