Dr. Doyin Okupe is one Nigeria that needs little introduction. He means different things to different people depending on one’s political persuasions. Having served as spokesman for former President Goodluck Jonathan, no doubt, he made many enemies just as he made new friends. Wearing a new hat, he came public only recently releasing his account of why the former president lost the last presidential election.

I really empathise (or sympathise) with whoever serves as a spokesman to a grossly clueless administration. The task can be very challenging defending an obviously clueless boss. It is not made easier when the spokesman himself is always under the heat. This job involves a whole range of complexities and avoidable risks. This job then may also require you to offend those you once loved, including you calling your mother a dog. It may equally require you to, like Squealer in George Orwell’s Animal Farm, call black, white (as you will sometimes do). If you refuse, there are thousands of people who are ready to take your position even for lesser pay in this country were for less than 5000 positions there were over 700,000 applications. In this job, your boss is your God who is most perfect and can do no wrong! This was the situation Dr. Doyin Okupe, the then Senior Special Assistant to the President (Joanthan) on Public Affairs found himself. Now he, like a loyal employee, has to cry for his former boss!

Let us spare him for been excessively loyal to his boss. Let us also understand the fact that his job, a thankless one at that, required one to do his best to look stupid as it may often require. In other to be seen to be too busy in his job, he said on the November 7, 2014 that NO PRESIDENT RESIGNS DURING WAR, when the heat became too much for his boss to bear. This was the presidency’s then official response to Bola Tinubu, the All Progressives Congress (APC) national leader, who earlier called on President Jonathan to resign in the face of poor performance. One can understand the fact that the spokesman must do his job, but condescending to obvious illogicality, falsity, and embarrassing fallacies is what is not acceptable.

Those who know Okupe very well probably knows he airs his views even when they make him look silly (a 60 plus years old). Only recently did he release his missile on the reason his boss, whom he once boasted would win, lost. He wrote in one of his Facebook posts, the “errors” committed by Jonathan that made him lose the election. According to him, “If any error was made it was firstly the failure of the PDP administration to sack the unfair and compromised electoral Officer who was allowed to conduct the election in spite of his obvious and profuse partisanship.”

It is understandable when an examination candidate fails a paper and then blames the examiner. Even though the candidate returned his answer scripts blank, he wants the examiner to be magnanimous enough to have mercy on him or her to grant him or her passing grade. When the examiner insists on standards, the candidate sees nothing wrong with his ridiculously poor performance, but his “unfair” examiner!

Let us bring this analogy to Okupe’s diatribes. The former presidential spokesman wants us to believe that “the unfair and compromised electoral Officer” was the beginning of the end of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) administration in Nigeria. Like the poor performing candidate in an examination, Okupe chose to see everything wrong with the examiner, in this case the electorate and the electoral umpire, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

Doyin Okupe perhaps has forgotten so soon that his boss was even scared of participating in the election itself. He had to be “begged” by some of his ambassadors, stylishly called “Transformation Ambassadors of Nigeria”. This man also cornered the truth by refusing to tell us that his boss was even scared of losing even his own party primary. The party came out later to tell us that every incumbent everywhere in the world has “the right to first refusal.” The party’s mercenary writers will murder history; defile history; even rewrite history just to satisfy their ethno-political ambitions.

Perhaps, Okupe is either sincerely ignorant of the fact that the same “unfair and compromised electoral Officer” was appointed by his boss who also conducted the first, and perhaps only, election he will ever win in 2011 or ridiculously mischievous. Just in case Doyin has forgotten, Jonathan was never contesting against Attahiru Jega, but he was so unfortunate to have come up against the Nigerian people.

The second “error” according to him was the inexplicable acquiescence of the PDP government to the use of the infamous Card Reader which was “skilfully manipulated to the disadvantage of the PDP presidential candidate.” On reading this quoted words, I had to be sure it was an adult who wrote it. I even did my best to try to confirm the possibility of writing under the strong influence of alcohol. The statement apart from the obvious fact that it lacks logic, one needs not look farther to see the foolery involved in those words.

I dare ask, how powerful was the APC, in opposition, to have made it possible, in the face of the well-known PDP desperation during the election to have “skilfully manipulated” the Card Readers without the PDP crying foul? In this digital age, how easy would it have been if “informed” persons like Okupe do us a favour to present credible data analyses to support his claims? When the Card Readers were prevented from being used in Rivers, Akwa Ibom, Delta and other states that Jonathan and PDP “won” did the APC also “skilfully manipulated” the process in those states as this man claims? Why did the military under Jonathan arm twist the “unfair and compromised electoral Officer” into postponing the election by six weeks and what role did the PDP play?

The third error, according to Okupe, is that the PDP fielded “a good, God fearing and patriotic man who in spite of his enormous power, the avalanche of deployable arsenal of war at his disposal, transformed himself to be the victim and refused to fight so that his countrymen may live and his Nation survived.” This is Jonathanians’ strongest argument, so let us be quick to put it to bed.

For Okupe’s records, former President Jonathan did Nigeria no special favour. If there was any favour done, it was Nigerians that did him a great favour. Nigerians gave him to privilege to lead them for about six years; they gave him the shoes he once did not have; if the same Nigerians who gave him shoes said they don’t want him anymore, does he have any other choice but to vacate the office?

Maybe what the medical doctor-turned-politician meant by Jonathan doing us a favour was because he choose to leave office peacefully. In any case since he lost the presidential election, he was duty-bound to leave. All those who have lost elections in Africa before him left their offices, so Jonathan did nothing special. Laurent Gbagbo is facing the International Criminal Court (ICC) for refusing to vacate office peacefully in Ivory Coast in 2012. Maybe Jonathan was only trying to avoid that embarrassment. If heaven did not fall in Gbagbo’s case, it would not have fallen in Jonathan’s case. In any case, we thank him a lot for his contributions, but we insist he did us no special favour!

What people like Okupe should know in their lifetime is that Nigerians voted against his boss specifically for the goats to be kept as much as possible far away from the yams. Those “regretting” General Muhammadu Buhari (Rtd.) becoming president never voted for him in the first instance, so they should not cry for those who did.

 

Follow me on twitter: @adgorwell 

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