A chieftain of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), Dr SKC Ogbonnia, has reportedly appealed to United States President Joe Biden not to back his Nigerian counterpart, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, in waging war against the Republic of Niger.
Recall that President Tinubu is the incumbent chairman of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), which is said to be ready to take military actions against the junta in the Niger Republic over the ousting, take over of government and continuous detention of the democratically elected President Mohamed Bazoum.
In a statement addressed to Biden, Ogbonnia, who was a former presidential aspirant on the APC platform, reminded the US President of his speech in 1986 against apartheid South Africa at the U.S. Senate floor, where he charged America not to “become part of South Africa’s problem”, but to remain their solution.
According to SaharaReporters, Ogbonnia wrote the letter of admonition from his home in Texas.
In the letter dated August 21, 2023, which was captioned: “Dear President Biden, Tchiani Is a Lesser Evil Than Tinubu,” the former aspirant stated that the option of invading Niger was an avoidable “booby trap to a political infamy of pyrrhic proportion”, adding that “if your support of President George W. Bush to invade Iraq in 2002 was a monumental mistake, as you later claimed, endorsing the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) under the leadership of Mr Bola Tinubu to invade the Niger Republic begs a mortal sin.”
He maintained that the apparent embrace of the ECOWAS leader by the West was polar-opposite to everything the United States of America under Joseph Biden stands for.
“As you ought to know, Tinubu’s path to power is not different from a classic coup d’état. A close parallel in recent American history is the unfortunate event of January 6, 2021, when President Donald Trump attempted to usurp the power of incumbency to cling to power.
“The world saw it for what it was, prompting me to publish the piece: “Coup In America: Why Trump Must Be Impeached Again.” Neither you nor the U.S. Congress needed to be told. Not only was Trump impeached for the attempted coup, but the Americans have also continued to prosecute him for the crime.
“The Honorable Joseph R. Biden, the common optics is that you are caught in a web of double standard in the case of Africa’s Bola Tinubu. This is a man who, as a sitting national leader of a ruling party, grabbed power by colluding with state agencies in a flawed election. The West is also aware that the said exercise was characterized by Tinubu’s pattern of violent extremism, including thuggery, and political assassinations.
“Needless to drum his well-documented shady background, which includes fake biodata, a corruption profile of “international dimension”, and connections to illicit drug trafficking in the United States of America. …Of course, there was a wave of global campaigns to place Tinubu squarely where he belongs,” Ogbonnia reported said in the letter.
He added, “The issue at stake, is that General Abdourahamane Tchiani of Niger Republic seized power through a palace coup d’état. Suddenly, Bola Ahmed Tinubu—an ageless violent extremist who broke all manners of constitutional order to “snatch” power and who continues to show no regard for the rule of law while in office—wants to lead the world to “restore constitutional order in the Republic of Niger.” Clearly, the world is faced with a case of a brigand posing as a forest guard.”
The politician, however, noted that considering the objective fact that the antecedents of Tchiani of Niger Republic before gaining power are by far more moral than those of Tinubu of Nigeria.
He said: “Follow that with the common knowledge of why Africans tend to resort to military coups. Combine such implications with a trending reality that, unlike the dictator in the Niger Republic, the one grandstanding as a democrat in Nigeria is in place for a place in Guinness World Records for assembling the most corrupt regime in human history. There and then explains some of the factors why Tchiani is popular with his people while Tinubu remains a repugnant pariah, generally seen around Africa as an illegitimate president cum imperial puppet.”
He explained the opposition of the Nigerian people to military intervention in the Niger Republic is not because of any preference for military rule. “Indeed, my people strongly advocate a democratic system. The apparent problem is that Mr Bola Tinubu, the primary instigator of the conflict, lacks legitimacy and credibility.
“This explains why all their “eyes are on the Nigerian Judiciary”—not the Niger Republic. These very favourites simply want to ensure that the presidential election tribunal can rule in line with the constitution and the extant electoral laws,” Ogbonnia added.
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