Political season awards by Feyi Fawehinmi

APC leader, Adams Oshiomole

Nigerian politicians are ridiculous. But during election campaigns aka political season, their ridiculousness rises to new levels. Thus, I am compelled by circumstances to present the inaugural Fawehinmi Political Season Awards.

The PPP Award

The Preposterous Political Personality (PPP) award goes to Senator Ibikunle Amosun, the outgoing governor of Ogun state. He is currently a candidate of the APC for the senate but his chosen successor is a candidate of a political vehicle called APM. SIA, as his fans call him, was schemed out of imposing his chosen successor on the APC using the innovative technology called ‘parallel primaries’. This has led to the incredible situation where the governor remains an APC candidate in the senatorial election while supporting another party in the gubernatorial election. He has even accused his own party of planning to rig against the party of his protege. A long dead Yoruba philosopher once said that the surest way to terrify someone is to declare that one has never seen this kind of thing before.

The Killer App Award

This award goes to none other than President Buhari himself. As a wise friend of mine put it “as far as I’m concerned, the moment Baba released 4 plus 4 the election was over”. The way the flashing of 8 fingers in the National Assembly’s chambers – a taunt to his haters – turned into a sticky campaign slogan was genius. Before long, grown men and women were seen everywhere holding up their hands like the Vulcans in Star Trek. The slogan and hand sign also have the advantage of a sophisticated type of simplicity – whether you think that the answer to 4 plus 4 is 8 or 44, you’re correct either way. The only challenge is if he decides to run for a 3rd term, the slogan cannot be recycled. But that is a problem for another day.

The Fake Pastor Award

I already had a very low opinion of Comrade Adams Oshiomole – once a socialist, now a socialite. But I was shocked that he was capable of making this already low opinion go even lower. At a recent APC rally in Owerri, he led the crowd in a call and respond style of prayer directed against Rochas Okorocha, the outgoing governor and senatorial candidate of the party of which he is the chairman. He asked the people to ask God for forgiveness for forgiving Rochas and giving him a second term when he didn’t deserve it. He also asked God to install ‘Sinator Hope’ as the next governor of the state. But the most amazing part was that, not only did the people lift up their hands to the heavens, they prayed every word along with him.

The Perfect Logic Award

This goes to Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue state who declared that he has been paying salaries ever since he crossed from the APC to the PDP. Thus, it was the APC, as a political platform that was owing the salaries and not him. Go ahead and try to fault this logic. Take your time, I will be waiting. The honourable mention also goes to Governor David Umahi who said that he was forced to ‘lend’ 2,000 PDP supporters to the APC for President Buhari’s campaign event in Ebonyi in order to avoid a situation where the President would campaign in front of an empty ground. Greater love hath no man than this; that a man lay down his supporters for his friend.

The Comedy Line Award

On any given day, Nigerian politicians will say all sorts of things on the campaign trail. Some of them are quite funny, one must admit. Governor Rochas Okorocha, one of the most ridiculous politicians in Nigeria, almost had a monopoly in this area. He gave us ‘Iberiberism’ as a philosophical concept, among others. But my favourite remains ‘Hope is hopeless’ – which was how he described Senator Hope Uzodinma, the man who stopped him from installing his son-in-law as his successor.

The Larger Than Life Award

A few months ago, no one knew or cared about Babajide Sanwo-Olu. But today? ‘Sanwo’ is everywhere to the point that people are beginning to see him in their dreams. Sanwo has been sighted as a vulcaniser mending tyres, as a hair stylist plaiting hair, as a mechanic repairing car engines and as a doctor examining women’s breasts for cancer among other things. And this is before we talk about the way he has blanketed Lagos with his image. Is there anything Sanwo cannot do? At this point, I fully expect him to be the next Mayor of London while still being governor of Lagos.

The Concomitants Award

In Kwara the APC campaign theme is ‘O to ge’ (enough of Saraki’s hegemony). In Lagos, the PDP’s campaign theme is ‘freedom’ (enough of Tinubu’s hegemony). This final award is jointly awarded to Nigeria’s 2 main political parties for their unity in diversity.

Get your PVC. Go out and vote your conscience. And please stay safe – no Nigerian politician is worth your life.

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