The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has a chairman, Adamu Mauzu, who’s affectionately called the game changer.
But did the game actually change for the party with the open walkout on President Goodluck Jonathan at the party’s special convention ground in Abuja by seven governors and other national leaders who went to gather at another venue to constitute a parallel leadership?
Although two of the governors – Babangida Aliyu (Niger) and Sule Lamido (Jigawa) – remained in the party, governors Rotimi Amaechi (Rivers), Aliyu Wammako (Sokoto) Rabiu Kwakwanso (Kano), Abdulfatah Ahmed (Kwara) and Murtala Nyako (Adamawa) continued with the struggle and eventually teamed up with the opposition All Progressives Congress (APC).
So, did President Jonathan lose the March 28 election that August 13 when he couldn’t handle the ‘august’ defection members of the PDP?
Hindsight is foresight late on the scene.
To put it in another way, it is wisdom that has arrived late to the game.
The voice of hindsight will now be telling President Jonathan:
“I wish I had thought of that.”
“I wish I knew then what I know now.”
“I would have; I could have; I should…hold the party together the way I met it.”
But do election figures back the claim that on hindsight, the president lost the last election in August 13, 2013?
Let’s do the math.
The PDP had total votes of 12,853,162 in the presidential election to APC’s 15,424,921 losing with a margin of 2,571,759 votes in the 36 states and FCT.
Here’s the breakdown of the results of the five states that broke away from the PDP to the APC:
|State||APC 2015||PDP 2015|
We have to adjust for the “Amaechi-effect”, which is to swap the votes in the five states and give PDP APC figures and assume a PDP that’s still intact.
The ruling party now has a deficit of 1,489,068 (i.e. 3,322,010 – 2,239,319 – 2,571,759) as against the initial 2,571,759 votes.
Going by this calculation, the APC would still have won without Amaechi and co.
But surely, you know it goes beyond calculations and figures?
We know. But before we come to that, let us look at figures from 2011 presidential election.
|State||CPC 2011||ACN 2011||PDP 2011|
The CPC, which merged with ACN and other parties (whose figures we want to ignore for convenience sake) to form APC in 2013, had a total of 2,770,720 votes in 2011, compared with PDP’s 3,344,042 in the five states under review.
We swapped the votes in the 2015 figures so as to adjust for the Amaechi-effect, but we do not have to do that for the 2011 figures. Then PDP was “intact”.
So, juxtaposing 2011 and 2015 figures for APC (CPC + ACN) and PDP bring up identical votes!
APC had 2,239,319 (remember we are using the Amaechi-effect figures) in 2015 and 2,770,720 in 2011. The difference of 531,401 in both election results is not negligible but then it’s not “transformational” neither could it have made “change” possible!
PDP had 3,322,010 (swapped votes to adjust for Amaechi-effect) in 2015 and 3,344,042. But unlike in the case of the votes recorded by APC in the elections, the difference of 22,032 is negligible.
Figures don’t lie, but on hindsight, the president lost because he couldn’t put his fingers on some other factors.
And hindsight is the ability to gain clarity by looking back in retrospect.