Sunday, June 9, 2013

Fear of APC fuelling PDP crisis — Utomi

The founder the Centre for Value and Leadership, Prof. Pat Utomi, has described the crisis rocking the ruling Peoples Democratic Party as a result of the threat by the All Progressives Congress.

In a telephone interview with SUNDAY PUNCH, Utomi said PDP members were bound together because they shared gains of power and thus endured impunity by their leaders.
He said, “In the past, the fact that there was something to share, reduced people’s willingness to protest the impunity. But as desperation sets in among the actors and impunity gets worse, they begin to look more ridiculous.
“Impunity  is the culture of the party. People talk about impunity as something that is a sole preserve of authoritarian military rule. They forget that Hitler was a popularly elected leader, who took impunity to an extraordinary level.
“Civilian governments, if they don’t have strong institutions, can go the way of Hitler. The only thing that bound PDP members together was that PDP was a clear part or avenue to power and personal gains. But now it is no longer so, hence the crisis.”
The professor of political economics also said the PDP crisis, which is heating up the polity, was threatening Nigeria’s democracy.
He said, “The whole PDP crisis story shows that we have a democracy without democrats in the political parties. One of the tragedies of the current joke in Nigeria is that military rule is unlikely. And so impunity has moved to a very strange level.
“I think these fellows should know that the world can get so embarrassed that foreign powers will encourage some people to just announce the removal of this democracy.
“The moment they make the announcement, I want to assure them that Nigerians will be on the streets dancing. In the end, it may not be in our best interest, but people are so fed up. The tolerance level is so high. Everything is about power and very little about purpose. Everything is focused on the next elections, not about serving the people.”
Utomi added that PDP members were merely repositioning so as to remain relevant beyond 2015 elections, noting that the current state of the party should not be a surprise to anybody.

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