In fairness to President Goodluck Jonathan, he has not yet said he would run for president again. But, from indications and based on many credible analysis by equally credible analysts, his "body language" shows that he will join the race. Perhaps that is why he has not said he won't.
In fact, Dr Jonathan has insisted that he is eligible for re-election, as submitted by his lawyer in a court case seeking to disqualify him from standing for re-election. Either way, 2015 has started eliciting so much reaction from various quarters around this country.
A former federal super permanent secretary and elder statesman, Alhaji Ahmed Joda, who hardly makes frivolous statements, had to come out recently to advise that President Jonathan should defuse political tension in the country by renouncing any intention he might have to stand for re-election in 2015. There is no doubt about the fact that there is suspense over his candidacy which he alone ought to clear soon.
But before Alhaji Joda's advice to the president, a former Biafra warlord, Col. Joe Achuzia, had stated that an Igbo presidency after Jonathan is "non-negotiable" (in his own words). Well, every eligible Nigerian is free to contest for any office available.
But Achuzia should be reminded that negotiation is an integral part of democracy. That is why it is said that, with proper arrangements, even the devil can enter heaven! Thus, non-negotiability is a bad principle with which to start any successful democratic enterprise.
Before Col. Achuzia's statement, some northern governors had had a meeting during which they tried to articulate a common strategy on how power could be "shifted" back to the north after Jonathan. There were also other meetings by many other power centres on how to either retain the current status quo that is advantageous to them or how to reposition themselves post-2015 for higher positions. In all these calculations, the south-west, which has the second largest voting block, has become a beautiful bribe being courted all over.
Meanwhile, as the jostling for 2015 has started taking shape, the president's namesake, Dr. Goodluck Diigbo, a factional leader of the Movement for the Survival of Ogoni People (MOSOP), has issued a statement declaring self-determination for the two Ogoni local government areas of Rivers State in Nigeria. His state governor, Chief Rotimi Amaechi, has since asked us to ignore Dr. Diigbo and not take him seriously.
As 2015 approaches, every day we are reminded of the prediction that Nigeria would break by that year. While many have decided to ignore that, there are a lot of centripetal and centrifugal forces at play in Nigeria now. The strains and stress on the unity of the country are simply overwhelming.
Nigeria is just about to be 100 years old - in 2014 - but it seems we need to do a lot to save the country before anyone would think of any contests. Over these years, we have seen the good, the bad and the ugly. But it really tells a lot about the management capabilities of succeeding leaderships if, after a century, many people in the country do not see or regard themselves as Nigerians.
Power belongs to God and He gives to whoever He wants at the time He wants. We as human beings can only use our God-given senses to analyse and predict based on what we can see, hear or do. Examples abound everywhere that make us see that it is not our capacity for rigging or the amount of money that is available to us or the number of political thugs at our disposal that makes us come to offices of our choices.
The late Mallam Umaru Yar'Adua had a powerful brother and an equally influential father. He contested for the governorship of his home state of Katsina in the early 1990s when both were alive. He did not win. It was after they had died that he not only became governor for two terms but actually became president of Nigeria! His late brother Gen. Shehu's life ambition was to be president of Nigeria. He had everything it takes to be, but God did not allow it.
General Abacha had the best security network around him. He was not only in office but in power as head of state. He had absolute control of everything in the country. He wanted to continue in office so that he could civilianise from his military uniform.
All the then existing five political parties had adopted him. Suddenly, in the cold hours of the morning of June 8, 1998, he was seized by death.
Ambition is neither a sin nor a crime. But to have ambition is one thing and to realise it is another. Right now, we are just barely one year into the tenure of office of those occupying elective positions around the country. What is required is for them to really work hard and prove themselves worthy of whatever aspirations they may have in the future. Governance is not about election.
And whoever is aspiring for national leadership must build necessary bridges and generate enough confidence, not to inundate anyone with baseless threats and empty rhetoric. God save Nigeria.