WHY SECONDUS, AND NOT FIRSTUS?
BY DONS EZE
I very much like the people of Niger Delta region of Nigeria and the names many of them bear, which very often are English names. These names are unique, perculiar, and identifiable.
For instance, whenever you hear names like “Fyneface,” “Fynecountry,” “Handsome”, “Green,” “Goodhead,” “Whitehead,” “Manager,” “Heineken”, “Whiskey,” “Godknows,” “Godsave”, “Godswill”, “Godsgrace,” “Godspower,” “Fineboy,” “Goodluck,” “Socundus,” etc., you will automatically know that such names belong to the Niger Delta region of Nigeria.
People say that the names give testimonies to the bearers, or that they follow those who bear them. In other words, they claim that names are infectious, that whatever name you give your child, easily manifests in his life.
Take the case of the former President of Nigeria, Goodluck Jonathan. He rose from a classroom teacher to become Deputy Governor, to Governor, to Vice President, and to President, within a short period of less than ten years. Because of that dramatic rise of Goodluck Jonathan, some people begin to name their children “Goodluck,” in their belief that the same luck will equally follow their own children.
Conversely, we are yet to see any person to name his child “Lai” (Mohammed), after Nigeria’s Minister of Information and Culture, probably because do not want their children to become lairs. They want them always to be truthful.
We do not know what made the National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Uche Secondus, to bear the name “Secondus,” instead of “Firstus.” Why should the man settle for the second position, rather than go for the first position? It appears that this name now follows Uche Secondus. Let’s go down memory lane.
Uche Secondus entered national politics in 2008 as National Organizing Secretary of the Peoples Democratic Party. That time, he was just an ordinary sailor in the boat. He was not on the driver’s seat. As usual, the PDP did not find it difficult to re-enact its winning streak by capturing the Presidency in 2011.
But as soon as Uche Secondus entered the cockpit to co-steer the ship of the Peoples Democratic Party, the fortunes of the PDP began to plummet. Elected Deputy National Chairman of PDP in 2013, Secondus was therefore a co-pilot of the party. Consequently therefore, in 2015, the PDP, for the first time, lost the Presidential Election. In other words, the party took the second position.
When the PDP National Chairman, Adamu Mu’azu, suddenly resigned following the disastrous outing of the party in the 2015 general election, Uche Secondus, as Deputy National Chairman, took over the reigns of the party, though in acting capacity. By then, the PDP had lost focus, and without definite direction.
That was why they brought in an outsider, Ali Modu Sheriff, to become the PDP National Chairman. Uche Secondus then returned to his former position as Deputy National Chairman. That was when there was katakata in the PDP, and Uche Secondus was also in the trenches, fighting.
When later they succeeded in kicking out Ali Modu Sheriff as National Chairman, the entire PDP family queued behind Uche Secondus, as the man with a magic wand, who would turn the table in favour of the PDP, and thus bring the party back to power.
Though the PDP under Secondus, in 2019 general election, made appreciable gains by winning some states in the gubernatorial election, the party still took the second position at the national level. It thus did not win the Presidency, which was the ultimate prize.
Perhaps, it could be the fear of PDP taking another second position in 2023 that made some people begin to kick against Uche Secondus leading the party again. They want to take the first position in 2023. Therefore, they want a “Firstus”, and not a “Secondus”, who will make this possible.
By Dr. Dons Eze, KSJI
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