1. Governor El Rufai’s error on Lagos State Godfatherism
If Governor Nasir El Rufai was as intelligent as he shows himself to be, pardon my language, he should be able to differentiate between a politician who is a “godfather” and the one who is a “father figure”. That I may educate him humbly, Lagos State, in the eyes of a sound political beholder, has no political godfather, who the politics in Lagos State has is a father figure in Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu. No one changes his father, and what is giving Governor El Rufai nightmares in this?
Every northern agenda against a southern presidency in 2023 should be banished because it will be resisted. It must be made clear that the foundation of the 4th Republic was erected upon the understanding that the north had been unjust politically. It is a crime that former military rulers enjoy and are accorded accrual benefits. In normal societies, people like President Buhari should never have offered himself for democratic governance unless he had apologized to Nigerians for truncating a democratic government some years back. They do not truly deserve what they take from us.
Governor El Rufai should, therefore, not hide behind his immature and infantile desire to take a shot at the presidency in 2023 to begin a campaign of calumny against a man who is clearly above him, and not in his class politically. His Ikoyi hosts, the Bridge Club, orchestrated a contained insult on the well earned political astuteness of the Asiwaju through organizing their “night out with Governor El Rufai”. What Governor El Rufai has shown of himself is that he is a man who must pull another man down to afford himslef an upward rise.
Like El Rufai admonished on hardwork, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu got to where he is today through “HARD WORK”. And before Governor El Rufai can meet the 5 million Lagosians whom he needs to immobilize the influence of the “godfather” over Lagos State, he would first need to win his election as Governor of Lagos State. And no Lagosians will listen to a Mallam, I can say this for sure. Governor El Rufai is a very lucky man, he is now the new, “tear rubber godfather of Kaduna State politics”, after downing “4” others before him – he chose that unfortunate occasion to announce his new status and his unfortunate assumptions to the world.
Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu is a self made politician, nobody in Nigeria made him politically, but Governor El Rufai’s political emergence cannot be said to be same with that of the Asiwaju. He benefitted from Turaku Atiku Abubakar’s political magnanimity to be admitted into government at the high level, he was a bad political tool in the hands of Olusegun Obasanjo to remain in that government, and from his days with the Congress for Progressive Change, he has remained a Muhammadu Buhari’s political errand boy to sound his loud and arrogant political voice.
2. Yakubu Dogara’s Mischievious Lie
Secondly, why is Yakubu Dogara attempting to lie in sympathy with the north central region, saying that the region has been marginalized in the House of Representatives for 20 years? That is a blunt and blatant lie. I did not know that our “number 4” citizen has a challenge that makes him incapable of retaining history in his memory.
Let me offer him some education: between 1999 and 2007, the late Senator Haruna Abubakar from Nasarawa State in north central region was Deputy Senate President under late Evans Enwerem and late Chuba Okadigbo’s Senate presidency. When Haruna Abubakar passed, Senator Ibrahim Mantu from Plateau State, also in north central region, took over as the Deputy Senate President. For 8 years, the deputy senate presidency resided in the north central region.
In 2007, David Bonaventure Mark from Benue State in north central was “rewarded” with the Senate presidency, being a Christian from that region. In 2011 when President Jonathan took over, a now abandoned Senate ranking rule was pooled and dusted to make Senator David Mark remain as Senate president, robbing and denying the south west of their opportunity to produce the Senate president. The south west was pushed to take the speakership of the House as “compensation” in that era.
In 2015, Senator Bukola Saraki from Kwara State in north central region, like a “thief in the night”, sneaked into, tresspassing the premises of the national assembly at ungodly hours, only to wake up and “snatched” the privilege to become the incumbent Senate president. For 20 years, the north central region held tight to principal offices in the senate from the 4th to the 8th Assembly. Who do these northern politicians think they are? Foolish arrogance annoys sensible reasonings indeed! What informed Yakubu Dogara’s position can only earn a mischievous end?
That Yakubu Dogara may see his parochial mindset developed from bad politics mirrored back to him: for 20 years the north central region had either held the Senate presidency or the deputy, how was Yakubu Dogara expecting the north central to hold another principal office in the national assembly during those periods?
3. The Selective Amnesia of Northern Politicians
Now, let us get back to those northerners resisting the emergence of Femi Gbajabiamila as Speaker for the 9th House, though I am strongly supporting the emergence of a south easterner for the position, asserting that it is unacceptable to have Vice President Osinbajo who is from Ogun State in the south west region and at the same time have Hon Gbajabiamila from Lagos State, also in the south west region, as House Speaker.
Please Nigerians, how do we explain the precedence in the emergence of Mohammed Namadi Sambo from Kaduna State in the north west region as Vice President and at the same time that we also had Aminu Waziri Tambuwal from Sokoto State, also in the north west region, as House Speaker? In Nigeria today, the northern politicians think that what is good for the goose should not be good for the gander. They lie! The “preamble” of the Nigerian constitution is very clear on this lie.
4. Taking Another Look at President Buhari
Again, I was taken aback by President Muhammadu Buhari’s claim, during a recent interactive session with the All Progressives Congress Governors Forum (APCGF) at the Aso Rock Villa, that it was the north that made inroads into the South West to sell the idea of, and propose the political parties mega merger that birthed the All Progressive Congress (APC) in 2014, when it was certified and certificated as a registered political party in Nigeria.
President Muhamnmadu Buhari cannot rob us of our recent history. The merger that threw up the APC and the eventual toppling of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) incumbency powers truly started in 2009 when Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu met with the then General Muhammadu Buhari to propose the merging of opposition parties to form a mega party to take power from the then “ruling party”.
It could be recalled that General Buhari rejected this idea of a parties merger because Asiwaju Bola Tinubu asked to be his running mate in the 2011 presidential race. I can still remember that General Muhammadu Buhari went into that election as the presidential candidate of the Congress for Progressive Change (CPC) and lost in that election. It was in that electoral loss that General Buhari lost political hope of being president. I learnt from grapevine that General Buhari lost that election, he wept and retired from active politics. Should we forget this pitiable situation Mr President found himself in 2011?
It was Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu who, in 2012, visited General Muhammadu Buhari in his Kaduna residence, in the company of Bisi Akande and Lai Mohammed, to talk the courageous general out of political retirement, with every assurance, he was convinced out of political retirement and was aided to ascend the presidency of Nigeria. Should we deny this history? So this is how Mr President’s position on the formation of the APC was erroneous and misinformed.
I am saying this to put the record straight, believing that President Buhari, at 75, may be forgetting how things were when they happened in 2013, when the birth pangs for the birth of the APC began. And likely, I wish to believe, that the people (the cabal) misdirecting and misleading Mr President to betray those who assisted him to refurbish his failed political career, and aided him to attain his political aspiration have again initiated their game plan, to confuse and force Mr President to fail again the second time.
5. A Word for the North for 2023
No matter what the north deems fit to do or say, now that the second term of President Buhari has materialized, let them do or say, but the 2023 Presidential race with NEVER produce a northerner as the President of Nigeria, mark this! That childish arrogance of northern politicians must stop forthwith. The south will not be a push over this time. The journey to 2023 has already begun and it could possibly restore power back to the PDP if the house of the APC remains unkempt.
The north must realize that we, Southerners, understand why they have mobilized Chadians and Nigeriens to “crowd out” southern Nigeria. We are not afraid of dying for noble causes, but the north will never take the south as easily as they arrogate to their incubated and unprocessed mindsets.
Lest the north forgets, the present crop of southern youths are not as their political forebears before them. Our fathers from southern Nigeria – apart from the late Nigerian sage, Jeremiah Obafemi Awolowo, who stood up vehemaently, and alone, to confront the north’s political hegemony – were subservient to their northern benefactors because they were beggarly, insatiable, greedy and hungry. They unfortunately conceded the dignity of the southerners to the north. This has been redeemed by a 5 termed democratic experience. And we won’t take this for granted.
We, in southern Nigeria, have noted, with time, the sarcastic nature and attitude of northern politicians in the politics of Nigeria. Their mentality has always been that of infantile arrogance and empty braggadocio – we are no longer in a military dictatorship, I must say this emphatically.
It was during the military era that such deprivations and inequalities held sway, with the Kaduna Mafia riding roughshod on our politics…not now again! We are in a democracy now, and such thoughts that the north can get whatever they desire in our present Nigeria, will be proven otherwise and banished by 2023.
And if I get this correctly, the youths and elders down south will be adequately sensitized, ahead of time, to reject a northern candidate from emerging president in the 2023 Presidential election. It will be an opportunity, and our pleasure to ensure that such erroneous incumbent thoughts, that who gets the north rules, will fail and fall face down in 2023. That race has appeared to start with the troubleshooting of Nasir El Rufai, the “unfortunate” governor of Kaduna State.
It now time to bring intelligence into how we organize our participatory democracy. For the sake of hindsight, and the need to avoid a second term failure for President Buhari, I will be tracing how Mr President won his second term bid, attributing it to the victories of the wars the Asiwaju won on behalf of Mr President before the presidential election.
It all started in January 2018, as late as that. As at then, Governor El Rufai had not remembered he needed a second term in office. There are many who now run their mouths because a benevolent god helped them crack their nuts of life. Until I come to you again expounding truth, God bless you all.
Ini Akpan Morgan writes in from Uyo via “email@example.com