Political Indictment

Politicians (especially in Africa) are always so eager to prove to their constituents that they are competent to lead, that they sometimes goof, indict, or even implicate themselves.

A classic example of this, is Governor Umaru Yar’Adua of Katsina State of Nigeria, who is also the ruling party (PDP)’s presidential candidate for the April 2007 elections. He was flown just last week, to Germany, “for a medical check-up” after he had reportedly collapse during a political rally. The man is back in Nigeria.

He landed in Lagos, after flying to Germany last week for medical tests when he collapsed at a campaign rally.

The 55-year-old is the frontrunner to win the election and has previously suffered from a kidney illness.

His collapse prompted speculation that he could be replaced as the People Democratic Party’s candidate.

Mr Yar’Adua told the BBC earlier this week that he had suffered from breathlessness and had taken his doctor’s advice to have a thorough medical check-up abroad.

Now, this is the crux of the matter – why did he have to be flown abroad, if indeed there were good health facilities in Nigeria. One of the key areas President Obasanjo’s supporters would love to point to as his achievements, is the health sector. Despite that, one always hears about one political office-holder or other, being flown abroad for something as trivial as catarrh. Why?

This is Jonathan Goodluck, Governor of Bayelsa State, and Yar’Adua’s running mate, speaking at a political rally in Osun State.

“My boss was supposed to speak here but he had minor ailment and he will be in the country tomorrow (today). He is much alive and not dead as being wrongly speculated,” he stated.

Flown abroad as a result of a minor ailment huh? There are no health facilities in Nigeria capable of handling minor ailments? I doubt if there will ever be hope for the poor, in Nigeria.

Yar’Adua says he is hale and hearty, and in position to be the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. Time will tell…

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Oluniyi D. Ajao
Oluniyi D. Ajao is an Internet Entrepreneur and Tech Enthusiast based in South Africa. Follow him on twitter @niyyie for more tech updates.


  1. The fact that Yar Adua and Atiku, the two top contender in the presidential elections raises an issue that must addressed in this election: Healthcare delivery in Nigeria. It is a national shame and the electorate must keep this in mind when they vote. If I were Utomi I would capitalize on this, this is an excellent opportunity to draw the attention of all that care to listen.

  2. […] Election Blog. I did an Internet search and while there are some bloggers (like this and this and this) discussing the election and Global Voices and Pambazuka News have been covering the elections, I […]

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