It’s good to know that Yoruba elders and leaders are now working to help Sunday Igboho. But I fear the efforts might come to nought! Too many inter – related strategic calculations are at play, and it is feared in official circles that Sunday Igboho will play a pivotal role at some point in the future. For that reason, the authorities are determined to keep him out of circulation, either in a Beninoise gulag, or in a Nigerian prison! Exile, in Germany might be the most favourable concession the Yoruba elders will extract from the Federal Government, for Igboho!
Buhari’s ambivalence to a Southwestern succession is rooted in the fear that the Southwest’s inherent egalitarian streak will inevitably result in a dismantling of the privileges he has amassed for his own region in the course of his presidency, and even a drastic restructuring of the Nigerian State – ideas the President’s core constituency still finds unpalatable. That constituency therefore, in order to overreach that inevitability, may decide to cling to power, either directly, or through a surrogate – who may even be Southwesterner, provided he is a quisling!
That will immediately inflame passions in the Southwest, leave the APC governing alliance in tatters, embolden latent separatist tendencies in the region – and create a role for Sunday Igboho. Presidential strategists already suspect the Igboho phenomenon was contrived by power paladins in the Southwest as a tactical pushback against their own nimble power designs! That is why, for the regime, it is a matter of strategic importance that all separatist leaders, including, including Kanu, be neutralized, or kept out of circulation.
For the state of flux resulting from the implosion of the APC, the unrest in the Southwest, and the disaffection of its people, could even possibly create a window for Biafra itself to emerge! For these reasons therefore, I doubt that the regime will relent in its pursuit of Sunday Igboho!
Kenneth Ikonne, SAN