POLITICAL parties have sustained their hate and dirty campaigns against opponents. From provocative statements to malicious documentaries, the mantra of politics without bitterness has long been discarded in this political dispensation.
Arguably, the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) seems to be on the offensive in this ignoble trend.
ENCOMIUM Weekly has been keeping tabs with the hate campaigns in print, electronic and social media…
PATIENCE JONATHAN ON VERBAL RAMPAGE
The wife of the President, Dame Goodluck Jonathan over-heated the already charged political atmosphere with series of hate campaigns launched against the opposition, APC.
In her campaign tour in Calabar, Cross River State, Mama Peace, as she is fondly addressed, allegedly told party supporters to stone anybody preaching change to them.
Elsewhere, Mrs. Jonathan reportedly said her husband should rather be praised and not criticized for improving the welfare of the menacing Almajiri children in Northern Nigeria. That was not all.
The First Lady allegedly berated Northerners “for bearing children with reckless abandon and throwing them to the streets to fend for themselves.” Mama Peace was also reported to have boasted that such behavior is not common in the South.
Still on her verbal rampage, Mama Peace incurred the wrath of civilized Nigerians when she personally attacked the presidential candidate of the APC, General Muhammadu Buhari. According to her, Buhari’s old age means he is brain dead and unfit to rule Nigeria.
Before her latest attack, the First Lady had at almost every rally reminded her husband’s supporters that the former Head of State is out of touch with this age. In Bayelsa State, for instance, Mrs. Jonathan described Buhari as an ‘analogue.’ She again said Nigerians would resist him as the gate of the Villa (Aso Rock) has been shut against him.
And with no apologies or clarifications from the Presidency over some of these provocative statements, it appears there is no stopping Mama Peace whose nationwide campaign is believed to be causing more damage than good to her husband’s bid to return to power in 2015.
JONATHAN SUPPORTERS EXPOSE TINUBU
Undaunted by the controversy raised by a malicious documentary targeted at the APC flag-bearer, General Muhammadu Buhari The Real Buhari, supporters of President Jonathan struck again last week. They released a damning documentary entitled the Lion of Bourdillon, where the former Lagos State governor and APC National Leader, Asiwaju Ahmed Bola Tinubu was accused of being a monumental fraud among other unprintable allegations.
Aired for two days on the Africa Independent Television, the private television owned by a frontline Jonathan supporter, Chief Raymond Dokpesi is now facing legal action in respect of the damaging documentary.
FFK’S DIRTY REMARKS ABOUT TINUBU, LAI MUHAMMED
The spokesman of the PDP Presidential Campaign Organisation, Femi Fani-Kayode, is still giving the opposition, APC sleepless nights. But last week, the former Minister of Aviation and one-time APC chieftain, took a flight from issue-based campaign to personal attacks on Tinubu and the party’s National Publicity Secretary, Alhaji Lai Muhammed. In his reaction to their criticisms of his claim that the Vice Presidential candidate of the party, Prof. Osinbajo has taken an oath to hand over to Tinubu if they win the 2015 election, FFK rained abuses on them.
He said he was not afraid of death. FFK also told the world he has no time for ‘pampers’ wearing Lai Muhammed who also has bad breath. Getting at Tinubu, Fani-Kayode said, he slurs in his speech, meaning the APC leader is not articulate enough to face him.
GOODLUCK LAGOS GRASSROOTS PROJECT CONTINUES ATTACK ON JEGA
The Goodluck Lagos Grassroots Project, a pro-Jonathan group is still disparaging the INEC chairman, Professor Attahiru Jega. Unrelenting in their bid to force Jega out of office, the group keeps reeling out hate adverts about the INEC boss’ flaws.
There’s no day without an anti-Jega propaganda in the major dailies.
BUHARI’S HEALTH STATUS, AGE POLITICISED
You hardly read any statement from the PDP without reference to Buhari’s old age and alleged failing health. Many think some of these personal issues have been taking rather too far.
FAYOSE FIRES ON…
As the First Lady and FFK are still carrying on with hate campaigns against the opposition, they have an ally in the person of Ekiti State Governor, Mr. Ayo Fayose.
The controversial governor is one PDP chieftain whose adverts and utterances are laced with hate for the opposition.
FANI KAYODE IS A BABY – BORNO GOV. SHETTIMA
Hate and dirty campaigns are not limited to the ruling PDP. The APC is also a victim. For instance, the personal attack on FFK on Sunday, March 8, 2015.
In his response to Fani-Kayode’s remarks on the missing Chibok girls, the Borno State Governor, Kashim Shettima said FFK is “physically an adult but mentally an infant.”
Not a few thought he went too far this time.
THE FUEL SCARCITY JIBE
It is true the PDP first politicized the fuel scarcity that hit the nation last week, but you needed to see loads of inappropriate criticisms by the opposition against Jonathan’s handling of the crisis.
Many expected the President would have been commended for restoring normalcy in the sector by promptly paying off petroleum product marketers. It is obvious there is no unity of purpose in this clime.
APC FUMBLES ON CHIBOK GIRLS, BOKO HARAM
Relatedly, the way and manner the opposition APC goes about ‘running down’ the Presidency on the ongoing war against insurgents has also been criticized.
The party is yet to admit serious progress is being made by President Jonathan in this respect. Rather than ‘appreciate’ him, the APC doubts his sincerity in the campaign against Boko Haram.
On the missing Chibok Girls, the APC is still on fire for their comments, which prompted FFK to blame the plight of the girls on them.
HATE CAMPAIGNS DOT THE MEDIA
From the print, electronic to the social media, supporters of the two major political parties are obviously raising their voices, instead of waiting till March 28 and April 11, 2015 to vote for change or continuity.
Nigeria has never been polarized this much across ethnic, religious and political divides as hate-induced articles, comments, documentaries, videos, cartoons…are fired against those with dissenting views.
And political observers predict that the trend would not abate so long as the parties and appropriate authorities have refused to do something about the unfortunate development.