By: Amos Daunimigha
The leadership capacity of political leaders ranks among the most discussed issues in recent times with a comparison between current and past leaders forming the core of these discussions.
In Bayelsa State, the political issues emanating from the leadership/administrative style of the state governor, coupled with the mischievous sponsorship of a speculative narrative by high-ranking government officials prematurely set the stage for conflict.
It is well known that the Senator Douye Diri (SDD) led government from inception assumed the status of a government in opposition. Opposition with itself and opposition with the system that produced it.
One may be tempted to excuse this anomaly with the fact that SDD’s administration is the first ever in the history of Bayelsa state to become the product of a linear succession project and as such is also the first to struggle with and successfully effect a positive shift in the age-long non-linear succession paradigm.
Unfortunately, this is far from the truth because unlike in other successions, it is such that SDD’s parent administration enjoyed two complete terms, hence it is expected that there was adequate time for SDD to have internalized the values and ideals of their parent administration.
Upon assumption of office, SDD immediately embarked on a supremacist agenda even after his benefactor and predecessors on several occasions stressed that he would maintain a reasonable distance from the affairs of government. This is a clear indication that SDD lacks leadership capacity.
The expectation would have been for SDD to clearly define and drive the paradigm shift, but he rather quarantined and alienated all those who staked their all to ensure he emerged and would have supplied the required boost for effective governance.
He surrounded himself with all those who openly and vehemently opposed his emergence and succumbed to their counsel.
Every good and experienced politician knows that it takes time, resources and goodwill to build a formidable structure so what therefore was the wisdom behind SDD forming his own political structure barely days after his assumption in office when there was a tested and trusted one in existence?
Why was the restoration/prosperity dichotomy suddenly advanced, wasn’t it an attempt to fragment the system and assemble his brand-new structure?
Truth be told, the root of all of this is that SDD felt intimidated by his predecessor’s political structure and was afraid of his colleagues.
Therefore, to conceal his complex and prove to all Bayelsans and his political pairs that he wasn’t anyone’s stooge since his predecessor singlehandedly installed him against the people’s will, he had to build his own followership.
Rather than consolidating on the political gains of his predecessor, SDD consciously drifted from the task of leadership and management of the interests of those who supported him as well as the party and successfully split the party into shreds. Another example of ineptitude.
The recent spate of decamping from the PDP was a sample of what the party under the SDD leadership had become.
Only a weak and wicked mind would dismiss this with the tale of the decamped being aggrieved affiliates of the former governor.
Recall that the former governor provided the adequate platforms and the required environment for leadership development through his strategic appointments and team-spirited work style, a provision that SDD is a beneficiary of.
Recall also that SDD was not the best, most politically experienced and qualified amongst his colleagues, but simply a beneficiary of the benevolence of his boss.
So is it not expected that his colleagues will opt for available political offices, who out of regard and genuine respect for their boss succumbed to the decision of the party leadership to support SDDs candidature?
Is it not proper to expect SDD’s absolute support for their political pursuits too in return for the support they gave to him?
Why then will they not be aggrieved at SDD’s inability to be honourable? Why would SDD watch and allow them to be edged out and why wouldn’t they interpret these actions as them being a threat to SDD?
Why won’t they choose to bear their cross and pursue their ambitions in other parties which SDD disdainfully calls mushroom?
If the former governor was as alleged, interfering with state affairs, wouldn’t he have stepped-in in his customary consultative manner? SDD simply lacks leadership capacity.
Despite the catalogue of counsel from several quarters, the situation is getting worse, because rather than show leadership and address the issues using his predecessor’s templates, he has chosen to use the media to twist the story to make him look good.
It is however shocking and uncertain why the former governor has maintained his silence all through this episode.
Perhaps he is dealing with the guilt of supporting SDD or like a mother, he had picked up the cane and is ready to discipline one stubborn child.