Power Tussle

Power Tussle

No tribe was meant to rule over 
a nation comprising of many tribes 
This was one of the 
reasons for the failure of the monarchical 
form of government. Even a nation 
that came from one source like Israel 
didn't find it easy establishing just 
a tribe to rule over the Twelve (thirteen) tribes.

Saul and his son Ishbosheth ruled 
for 47 years, they were both from 
the tribe of Benjamin. Saul died in battle, 
Ishbosheth succeeded him but by 
then the kingdom had been fractured.
David began to rule over Judah 
while Ishbosheth ruled the other 
half of the kingdom. Ishbosheth waxed 
weaker daily while David grew 
stronger. Ishbosheth lost his throne 
after his altercation with Abner, his 
backbone and the general of his army.
David took over the rulership of both 
Israel and Judah. In all David also 
ruled for 40 years.

Solomon took over from David but 
we saw how fractured the mind 
of the tribes were when Sheba 
son of Bicri of the tribe of Benjamin 
(2 Samuel 20) decided to lead a rebellion 
of the other tribes against David after 
the defeat of Absalom. 
We also saw Shimei, of the tribe of 
Benjamin cursing David (2 Samuel 16:5-13) 
because the tribe of Benjamin 
believed that the throne of David was a 
stolen throne and 
that they were by right the ones 
who ought to be ruling over Israel.
Regardless of how wonderful the reign 
Of David was, there were agitations 
from other tribes
This is human nature.
Solomon took over from David and 
he refocused the kingdom on infrastructural 
development and 
other goals apart from his throne.
The nation built temples and palaces 
and became the jewel of the world 
of men. Solomon's wisdom and 
administrative acumen became legendary 
but it was not enough to keep the 
kingdom in the hand of Rehoboam 
his son

When Rehoboam became King, the 
assembly of the elders of Israel came 
together and gave him a test.
He failed the test and as a result 
the fragile unity which David and Solomon 
tried to build crumbled and Jeroboam
Of the tribe of Ephraim led a revolt 
that took away the ten tribes of Israel 
away from Judah. Rehoboam wanted 
to go to war and forcefully bring the 
kingdom back but it was a tough call 
because the ultimate loser would be
Israel as a nation.
Nations need people to thrive
War kills men and weakens nations.
Rehoboam was told by a prophet to 
reconsider the choice of warfare.
He did and the nation became divided.
Jeroboam's son Nadab succeeded him 
but he only ruled for two years before 
Baasha of the tribe of Issachar overthrew 
him and killed all the princes!

Baasha ruled for 24 years and was 
succeeded by his son Elah who was 
also assassinated after two years by 
Zimri of the tribe of Simeon, 
an army general who usurped the throne. 
He ruled for seven days but in those seven days 
he also killed all the sons of Baasha!
The army revolted and chose Omri of 
the tribe of Issachar as their king.
OMRI ruled for 50 years and established 
Samaria as the capital city of Israel.

If we continue down the lines of 
succession in Israel we will come 
to one conclusion. All the tribes 
desired to rule and all of them got 
to rule one way or the other.
This is true of human nature.
If a king ruled and the people were happy, 
once he died the other tribes will agitate
 for rulership. They never say
"Competence should be rewarded by 
leaving the King's heir on the throne"
And if a king is evil and the people
suffered. The other tribes will agitate 
and wrestle power but that does not 
mean the tribe of the wicked king 
wouldn't also agitate for the throne later.
This was what led to the decision of the 
Kings of Old to kill all the heirs to the 
throne from other tribes.
They do this so that they can 
eradicate threats to their reign!
Israel and Judah were bound by one 
language and common ancestry and 
yet the strife over rulership was unending!

Among the Yorubas in Nigeria, we have 
seen feuds arise over succession to 
thrones among family members
Blood brothers get at each other 
over a stool, this is human nature.
It is therefore not such a big deal 
to see a country of many tribes and 
languages like Nigeria agitate for 
power across the nation with so much 
If the man on the throne gives the 
nation debt relief and what have you, 
the agitation will persist, if he brought
 the country into serious debt, the agitation 
will not cease. It has nothing to 
do with competence or performance.
It is natural for the sons of men 
to aspire to rule over their peers 
and not be ruled over perpetually.

Europe learnt this in the 1800s.
Democracy and parliamentary systems of 
government arose as a result of people 
aiming to be free of depots and ruling 
themselves through their elected officials 
in whom they would vest their rights as 
citizens. The one thing you will not 
see in history is a ruler that was
dashed the throne.

Obasanjo benefitted seriously from 
MKO's mandate that was stolen by the
 military and the crisis that followed it. 
The one part of Nigeria that could 
engineer a succession successfully was 
the South West. They won't go the route of 
war but they were well placed to
scatter the nation of they should 
choose to do so. The South East had 
always wanted to leave the threesome
but were held in place by the strength 
of their other two roommates.
If the Yorubas should say Enough, 
there would be no Nigeria anymore
The military knew this and decided to
plot their way out of that quagmire by 
giving the country a hybrid of Yoruba and 
military candidate that won the election.

Since 1999, the seat in Aso Rock had 
been won by grit, blood, alliances, bribery, 
rigging, and every other dirty trick in the 
book. This is normal in every
election cycle. Name-calling, bullying, 
underhand strategies and betrayals or 
claims of betrayals are normal in politics
You cannot tell the people "I deserve 
to be King because my tribe has never 
ruled before". You can however strive, 
push, canvass, campaign, form alliances 
and play the politics to get there.

Having an entitlement mentality didn't 
help the brother of the prodigal son.
Thrones are not given to wailers, 
it is given to prevailers.
As the political season gets thicker, 
let's put humanity first and play politics fairly

Rehoboam did this and it saved 
a lot of people from untimely death.
Let us remember that eliminating people 
to rule for four or eight years 
is not worth it. While politics is a 
dirty game, we can play it with 
decency and ensure that Nigeria 
and her future wins!