What challenges from Turkey?
Coups! I thought the word had been expunged from the dictionary. Nobody born in Naija in the last two decades knows what the word means. And to think that we once wrote the global coup manual and coached it across the West Coast, the word ought to have been delisted from the global political lexicon. Imagine a word expunged from the lingo finding relevance right near the aorta of Europe? That is stretching anathema well beyond its elasticity.
Last week, there was a coup attempt in Istanbul where you are unlikely to see a bull acting as a symbol of power shift. Istanbul is the capital of Turkey and please stop salivating, because it has absolutely nothing to do with the winged creatures that graces your Christmas tables.
So, the army struck (love that phrase), rolling out tanks, and marching against Turkey’s ruling AKP party with their AK 47 and ordering every bloody civilian to stay indoors and wait further orders. Recep Tayyip Erdogan lost control for 12 hours. Peeping from under his wife, Emine’s abaya, this man who promised to wipe out Twitter actually used social media to mobilize his people against the coup. They heeded his appeal, trooping unto the streets to lie in front of tanks and disarming the putchists. As we write, the Sultan is back in the 1,150 roomed $615 million Ak Saray (the White Palace) from where he is directing a purge never seen since Kamal Ataturk created an empire. In this clampdown, only Erdogan and Emine are ruled out as suspects.
In normal climes, Erdogan brooks no opposition. In two years, about 2,000 people, ranging from students to activists have been prosecuted for insulting the president. This must be cheering news to the conscience of Isa Yuguda and Sule Lamido. Prominent among Erdogan’s victims are a 16-year old student and Miss Turkey 2006, Merve Buyuksarac. Both were arrested, the boy known only by his initials was released but Merve is serving a 15-month suspended sentence. It won’t be out of order if she ends up in jail guilty of secretly being happy at the coup - even without evidence!
To those of you who daily call Naija a zoo and your president a cow count your teeth with the top of your tongue and thank your stars. This writer will avoid Istanbul airport like Ebola after this, in case the Turkish ambassador is reading. A German satirist is being investigated in his own country for criticizing Erdogan - the Sultan is always right!
Before some of you snigger at Erdogan for hiding just remember that everyone hopes to make heaven, but very few want to die. Baba na Dutse, the maverick IBB relocated Naija’s capital to Abuja from Dodan Barracks after an encounter with a guy named Gideon Orkar. On September 11, George W Bush was missing in action for several hours while America was under attack. Saddam Hussein promised the grandmother of all battles but when Bush and Blair’s coalition of the coerced, the threatened and the cajoled finally rode through Baghdad he vanished only to reappear in a rat hole. By the time he was fished out, he had developed momentary amnesia forgetting who he was. What shall we say of Muammar Gadhafi who wore an air of invincibility only to be smoked out of a culvert? Give Diepreye Alamieyeseigha his deserved rest.
To quote a home worn cliché, Erdogan is back in government and power, but the big question is who is safe in Turkey? His plane had hardly touched down when he declared a noted cleric now in exile in America guilty without investigation or trial. As I write, over 2,000 Turks, ranging from activists to clerics have been arrested and the dragnet is widening. Truth is, Turkey is now and for a long time to come a huge prison yard in which everybody is guilty until the President clears them. The Sultan finally has a good reason to bark, bite and to inject poison.
While wishing Erdogan happy survival, global leaders have warned him not to totally annihilate every form of opposition. It is a warning evidently bound to fall on deaf ears.
Apart from it being unfashionable to have a soldier sitting behind your country’s flag in 2016, why did Turks risk
Apart from it being unfashionable to have a soldier sitting behind your country’s flag in 2016, why did Turks risk their lives and limbs to protect the mandate of a civilian dictator? Well, even Myanmar’s generals are toying with the ballot box!
their lives and limbs to protect the mandate of a civilian dictator? Well, even Myanmar’s generals are toying with the ballot box! Erdogan is the dictator with the Midas touch. He inherited a comatose economy with unemployment standing at 10 per cent. In two years, he has turned things around growing the economy by almost five percent. Turkey is now a manufacturing and export hub exporting its products across the globe. That means job creation, stability, food on the table and happiness all around. A fed citizenry is the best guarantee for security. So, before reading Sai Baba’s condemnatory message on this one, where do we stand with an economy-gone cold Turkey? Lai claims his party has a blueprint, but only him and his party men know what it is - Naija people want to be sold on it. Nothing else satisfies!