It is strange to observe how ones who insist on condemning Buhari because of his past deeds are unwilling to assess Jonathan on the basis of his own more recent deeds.
They find it hard to believe that the Buhari of 2015 is not the Buhari who executed law breakers by decree in 1984. They also make much about his identity as a muslim and fret loudly about how this has conditioned him to be 'intolerant'. Thus they find it easier to entrust the future to the 'christian' Jonathan...a man who did not give a damn after 200 Christian girls from Chibok were kidnapped into sexual slavery by murderous arabist lunatics in 2014.
They seem to believe that Jonathan will 'rebase' his character in such a way that all traits currently manifesting as incompetence in leadership will be eradicated by 2015. A miracle!!
They say that because the ex-soldier imprisoned journalists by decree in 1984, he will accept no criticism after May 2015. But they find it easy to believe that the ex-lecturer who has used the SSS, the DSS, the police, the navy, and the army to harrass, intimidate, and imprison opponents will deploy the full resources of his moral universe to ensure that similar things do not happen after May 2015.
It seems to be so easy to assume that if Buhari becomes president, he will govern in the same way that he did some 30 years ago. Meanwhile, the likelihood that Jonathan will continue with (and even intensify) his even more detrimental misleadership is ignored.
It is tempting to see this double standard as being nothing more than a by-product of deeply buried but overwhelming 'tribalist' feelings...i.e. Buhari is hated only because he is Fulani.
It would be ironic if at the end of the day, it turns out that a deeply ingrained tribalism is the primary reason why 'de-tribalised' nigerians are actually against Buhari - kind of like how so many who claimed to be above 'racial' sentiments were drawn into supporting Barack Obama only because he is 'black'.
And so we cannot ignore the likelihood that for many, a mistrust engendered by exposure to fundamentalist christianity's hatred for anything that is not a part of itself (regardless of all other considerations) has played a part in creating the mental image that is held of Buhari.
Say anything about Candidate Buhari and they start talking about General Buhari...the muslim fanatic...the Fulani koran dipper...
There is of course a greater irony here: Africans hating other Africans because of conditioning imposed upon them by ideologies that were manufactured by non-Africans who despise every single characteristic/trait that distinguishes the African from other human species...but that is a subject for another time...
Under normal circumstances, political campaigning is mainly about inspiring the electorate to come out and show their support for persons with the plans percieved to be the most likely to improve their living conditions. This is not what is happening right now in nigeria. Since it lacks any verifiable achievements in the most critical sectors that can be used to rally nigerians from all regions behind it, the Jonathan regime builds it's case for re-election solely on negativity.
The regime's chief selling point is what it isn't, not what it is - because even though their minds are quite dull, members of (and apologists for) the Jonathan regime are still sentient enough to know that what they represent is nothing commendable. Therefore, the regime tells the electorate to "Vote for Jonathan, he is not a muslim", "Vote for Jonathan, he is not Hausa or Fulani" ...which in some places is amended to include "...and he is not Yoruba".
The most pernicious aspect of this negativity is the manner in which past occurences of misgovernance are used not only to give Jonathan a pass for his ongoing misleadership but, how these past occurences are presented as valid tickets that give Jonathan the right to continue his misleadership into the future. Unlike in all other cases in worlds based on sane precepts where past errors serve as opportunities for those in the present to fashion themselves a better future, what we have here is a case where past evils are used as justification for the deliberate imposition of present and future evils on the same people who were and who are victims.
It makes no sense to pray that evil descends from above this morning because a bad thing arose from below last night. It makes no sense to say that Ijaw Jonathan must be left in peace to misrule because Yoruba Obasanjo was a bad ruler. To permit a foretold evil to happen - when it is within our power to do otherwise - is beyond stupid, it is insane. Even bacteria learn from previous disadvantageous circumstances and evolve. We do not live in yesterday - yesterday is past and will never be experienced again (except in recordings). Today however is right here right now and tomorrow is just around the corner.
People change, circumstances rarely remain the same from moment to moment. What exists today provides the best guide to predicting what tomorrow may look like. This is why assessments of what a candidates's presidency may look like cannot be done without considering the strengths and weaknesses of the exigencies that determine the type of man he is today.
So let it be noted that when APC wins the presidential elections, the person who takes the oath of office will be a civilian President Buhari and he will head a government that includes Houses of Assembly that have the power to frustrate (and stop) him if he attempts to govern in manner that caters only to his alleged desire to resolve 'vendettas' and impose esoteric religious beliefs on all parts of the country.
We are living at a time that is different from when General Buhari headed a military government whose members were all surbordinates that were bound by military law to obey his orders. So ones should give a rest to the pathetic scare-mongering about how an all powerful (and vengeful) dictator is trying to become President.