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[The Concourse] Dilemma: PDP & NLC suffering from Stockholm syndrome


From the foregoing, it can safely be inferred that Nigeria’s main opposition party, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and leadership of the nation’s labour union might be suffering from Stockholm syndrome.

They are inordinately getting used to taking comfort on the sideline and feigning ignorant of our corporate ordeals respectively. The masses who hoped on them to lead a march against this truculent government harvested disappointment.

Stockholm syndrome is a psychological condition in which a hostage emotionally bonds to his or her captor. This was a Swedish Norrmalmstorgssyndromet, named after the robbery of Kreditbanken at the Norrmalmstorg square in Stockholm, Sweden, in which the bank robbers held bank employees hostage from 23rd to 28th August, 1973. And when rescuers broke in to free them and arrest the captors, the hostages started defending their captors.

The author, Jude Eze
The author, Jude Eze

In layman’s understanding, Stockholm syndrome is a psychological response, that occurs when hostages or abuse victims bond with their captors or abusers. This psychological connection develops over the course of the days, weeks, months, or even years of captivity or abuse.

A prototype of that condition is currently happening to us as a people. A fraction of the suffering masses still defend the government covertly, even with rescuers not in sight.

Over the past two years, as it became evidentially glaring that the present regime in the country is out to strangulate life out of the masses, a feasibly large percentage of Nigerians began to diss the national chairman of Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Comrade Ayuba Wabba for his treacherous betrayal of the thrust of his mandate to fight for the common good of the average Nigerian worker.

In this space, last September, when Federal government hiked fuel price to N162/liter, and Comrade Ayuba absconded from condemning it, we discussed his position under the topic: “EFFEMINATE NLC: Is Ayuba Wabba an accomplice or a victim?”

Six months after, and going by both antecedents and precedents it can be extrapolated that he is a traitorous accomplice to the evil we suffer and not just a victim of emotional blackmail.

Be that as it may, we have not paused to ask ourselves what has become of the supposed opposition force to the current regime — the PDP.

But here we are, leeringly gaping at a tactless, spineless and cowed PDP, that is comfortably sleeping on a cowardly mattress of milquetoast. Its National and state executive officers put on defeatist garbs and their agitation does not span beyond press statements.

Never in our national history did we have such double coincidence of tragedies in opposition politics. A rare situation where the main opposition party maintains cemetery silence over government’s bad policies while Labour Union leadership is awkwardly partisan ostensibly having soft spot for the party in power.

The issue is not just that Nigerians are suffering. The real problem is that the end to their affliction is not in sight, since all camps of hopeful resistance and liberation are pliant and broken.

PDP under Prince Uche Secondus has achieved nothing aside wrestling the party from its undertaker, former Governor Ali Modu Sheriff and increasing the number of states controlled by the party from 11 to 16.

But of what value is the numerical strength in states controlled by the party if they could not translate into viable suppliant adjuration for the welfare of the masses.

Nigeria’s economy was gasping for breath under PDP with Ngozi Okonjo Iweala leading a potent economic team that administered effective therapy to keep it stable. Yet, in 2015, following a spell of an acidic opposition force, the APC with its leprous hands grabbed power and the economy slipped into coma immediately.

With further poor management under the amateurish handling of their Finance ministers, it was referred to ICU and with the naira exchanging at 500 to a dollar, fiscal pundits were bold to declare it dead, ready for embalmment!

At such woeful outing by the ruling party, everyone thought PDP will seize the opportunity to repackage and re-market themselves and save the nation from socio-economic hardship which was beating a funeral march for to doomful grave. But the predictors of such hope were forlorn by the reality on ground.

With unmitigated and heightened incidences in banditry, kidnapping, insurgency and gross abuse of human rights as the curriculum vitae of Buhari regime, it would be an easy ride for any opposition party that worth the name to chase APC out of  Aso Rock in 2023.

But since losing out in supreme court on the 2019 presidential election, PDP have lowered their tail in-between their legs.

When last did you hear from PDP’s 2019 presidential candidate Alhaji Atiku Abubakar? Bukola Saraki has gone on sabbatical. Nyesom Wike has taken a vow of solemn silence.

Ayodele Fayose is gaming. Gov. Bala Mohammed is canvassing for his Fulani kindred to be wielding AK-47 riffles. Sen. Ekweremadu is sitting on the fence. Former President Jonathan is in clandestine romance with APC.

Maazi Peter Obi knew that he enjoys enormous goodwill among Nigerians for his exceptional leadership credentials, yet he lacked the liver to drive the needed push to keep his ambition afloat, seeing that South East is by right, supposed to produce the next president.

And in his ‘nativity’, the radical Gov. Yahaya Bello is dominating the cyberspace with his presidential ambition.

Gov. Ortom of Benue is the only one adorning the warrior’s garb and speaking out against brazen injustice in the land.

Charly Boy’s “#Our mumu don do” protest march, Omoyele Sowore’s #revolutionnow and the recent #EndSARS protests presented fertile grounds for PDP and NLC to cash in. But instead, they choose to look the other way.

Between 7:45am to 3:00pm on Friday last week, Nigerians experienced untold traumatic quip of their lives. The day broke to the news that federal government has increased fuel price to N212/liter. Panic turned the day’s breakfast sour.


Knowing that both PDP and NLC are nonexistent when it comes to mobilizing mass protest, cities around the country were thrown into chaos until FG deleted the notice on the PPPRA website; and in their characteristic styles denied it in the media.

President Buhari as Petroleum Minister has inflicted enough injury to our psyche.

A day before, our national security adviser Babagana Mungono levelled a heart-rending allegation against this regime when he said that funds meant for the purchases of weapon to prosecute the war against terrorism got missing under the erstwhile Service Chiefs.

These are the same people Buhari decorated with ambassadorial posts. Paraphrased, Mungono was telling us that thieves are now our non-career ambassadors.

PDP received the news just like every other Nigerian and we went to bed.

After Olisa Metu’s incarceration, no one dared to talk again in the party. Kola Ologbondiyan is the tamest opposition party spokesperson ever. He was so lily-livered in utterances that the young Ikenga Ugochinyere of CUPP overtook him in earning more admiration for challenging the government.

To be fair to Prince Secondus, he once mobilized a mass protest against this government in the close of its first term. But they were abused and teargased. Hence, they retreated to their shelves.

His media adviser, Ike Abonyi has been the lonely voice in the wilderness of organized silence, bereting Buhari and his anachronistic regime. And so deductively, one can say that Secondus as a person is trying his best. But more is needed.

For six years and counting, the country is hexed with a regime that derive joy in inflicting pain on the people.

Mr. Tony Nnadi of the Lower Niger Congress summed it up: “With the reign of terror, broken down security, global poverty capital status, rising corruption, spiking price of petrol, it is clear that God has chosen to disgrace those who violently seized power in 2015 and punish their supporters of evil who celebrated lies & deceit”

If NLC goes defunct, the way it is currently under Ayuba Wabba, and PDP keeps snoring in comfort zone, then 2023 will be “good night Nigeria.”

✍Eze Jude O

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