6 June 2011
Notwithstanding his deft management of the constitutional crisis that erupted following the incapacitation of his predecessor, the jury was still out on President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan (GEJ) after he became President following the death of Umaru Yar' Adua in May 2010.
What a difference a year makes; a landslide victory at the Party Primary of the ruling People's Democratic Party (PDP) was followed by credible general elections and an emphatic personal triumph in the Presidential elections. It is clear now that there is more to GEJ than good luck. This time, he is the architect of his own destiny.
Having won the elections outright in 7 Northern States and in 16 of the 17 Southern States, whilst holding unto a good second position in most of the remaining 13 States, GEJ earned himself as firm a nationwide mandate that any Nigerian can genuinely dream of. In sharp contrast, GEJ's closest challenger, Major-General Buhari failed dismally. Indeed, a nationwide opinion poll commissioned by ANAP Foundation and conducted by NOI Polls (in association with Gallup) before the elections found that Buhari had a shockingly dismal followership in the South, where his expected share of percentage votes was 5%, 0% and 0% respectively in the South-West, South-South and South-East geo-political zones. With GEJ also expected to win in the North-Central zone, that left Buhari's strategy in tatters, notwithstanding him being a front-runner in the North- East and North-West zones.