Femi Fani-Kayode was uncharacteristically blunt in his article titled ‘Bola Tinubu and those who want him dead”. We strongly believe the ulterior motives behind the article by the embattled erstwhile Director of Media and Publicity of former President Goodluck Jonathan Campaign is looking for relevance and more importantly, to pour gasoline to the internal crisis of the All Progressives Congress (APC).
Nevertheless, his write-up touches on some sensitive critical issues capable of destroying the party if those mentioned by Fani-Kayode and few others continue their campaign calumny against the leader of the party. The article is a timely warning to all APC stalwarts that it is a sin to bite the fingers that fed you.
At his critical juncture in the history of APC led federal government, we believe NOW is the time for our group to confront the leadership of the party with the bitter truth on some important issues raised by Femi Fani-Kayode in his article. The recently conducted controversial Ondo State APC gubernatorial primary elections were far from being free and fair. It was tainted by lack of transparency and other illegalities. The partisan and dictatorial role played by the APC chairman Chief John Odigie-Oyegun in the primary elections which was induced by no other thing than monetary gratification leaves him with no option than to resign TODAY. His case can be likened to someone who is reaping from where he or she never sowed. A party built on trust is now under the leadership of someone who cannot be trusted. APC was built on principles of democracy, but the Chairman is very autocratic, tyrannical, repressive and overbearing in nature.
The recent meeting of members of the National Working Committee (NWC) of the party wherein six members voted for another primary election in Ondo State as against five members that upheld the election and the Chairman without consultation with the party leadership went ahead to forward Rotimi Akeredolu’s name as candidate of the party for the coming governorship election in the state speaks volume of who he is. We join all well-meaning members of the All Progressives Congress to call for his immediate resignation as Chairman of our political party. Failure to resign within 14 days will result to mobilization of members and mass protest to realize our mission.
It is no news how the National Leader of the APC, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu built the party including so many members who have turned his political foes and adversaries including the President and some of his ministers especially from the South west. What is new and strange is how ungrateful people can be, turning their back against their benefactor who had risked everything to empower them.
Unfortunately, most of them lack electoral value needed to win election, even in their polling units and ward. For example Kayode Fayemi, former Ekiti State Governor nowa minister and one of the right hand men of the President, failed to win election in his own ward after been a governor for four year. This is someone who was tutored and nurtured by Tinubu. Who would have known the former Governor of Lagos, Babatunde Raji Fashola if he was not discovered and brought to lime light by this same Asiwaju whom they now see as arch enemy?
We also know Nasir El Rufai, the Kaduna State Governor frequented Asiwaju’s house in company of the President’s team to lobby for Aswwaju’s help and support to be sure Buhari wins the presidential elections. At a point, President Buhari was practically living in Asiwaju’s house where his confidence and political strategy were being fine-tuned and nurtured by Asiwaju to effectively pose a threat to the presidential ambitions of Atiku Abubakar and Rabiu Musa Kwakwanso, the two political enemies most dreaded by Buhari. PMB was at a time reading Asiwaju’s itinery to make sure that he sees outside Nigeria. He was in Asiwaju’s house in London times without numbers to solicit for his help.
Niyi Adebayo, former Governor of Ekiti State who has also joined the band wagons against the leader of the party, because Asiwaju did not submit his name for ministerial appointment was defeated beyond imagination by Governor Fayose after spending four years as governor of the state. In fact, he lost in his poling unit right in front of his house.
Rotimi Akeredolu, the controversial governorship candidate of APC in Ondo state got all needed moral and financial support from the same leader in 2012 and came not even second but third at the general election. The people of Ondo State out rightly rejected him. Some of the leaders gave reasons while he didn’t get the popular votes in the state. Because he couldn’t get same support he got four years ago had made him to equally join in maligning the man of the people. His undue attitudes are repressible.
Olorunibe Mamora, an indigene of Ogun State was Speaker of Lagos State House of Assembly and became Senator representing Lagos West for two consecutive terms. Because he couldn’t secure his third term ticket for senate and his name not submitted for ministerial appointment by Tinubu was enough reason for him to turn his back and suddenly became his enemy.
For Governors Ajumobi and Ibikunle Amosun of Ogun States who have been wasting resources of their states to sponsor campaign of calumny against someone who helped them most especially in breaking the jinx of a No Second Term ever in their states and never requested for any favour, but for expansion and collective interests of the party, the law of Calmar is unavoidable.
For Mr President, we were not surprised that he suddenly turned his back against someone who actualized his presidential ambition. What surprises us is the way, manner and the rate at which he is using the people who learnt under the tutelage of the National leader against him. We wish, Asiwaju knew he was not dealing with a Hausa, but a typical Fulani man who could kneel down many times to have his desired goals fulfilled and pretend not knowing his benefactor the following minute.
The big question is, what has Asiwaju always wanted from the people he helped and built? The naturally gifted leader of leaders has always wanted to leave a legacy, a better society for the coming generations, responsible and responsible government that everyone can call his or her pride. Another deeper question is, has this man ever wanted positions for his children or family members, the answer is No. The senatorial ticket secured by his wife in 2011 was as a result of outcry of different associations and coalition of women who desperately needed a woman as one of the senators to represent their interest. Their quest was rejected by Asiwaju when it was presented by Mrs Iyabo Akerele, Evangelist Sokunbi (Iya kalokalo) and Iya oniyan as foundly calld, not until Chief Bisi Akande had to persuade the National leader before he gave in to it.
Even as Governor of Lagos, the National leader never favoured any of his family members. Can we compare him with President Buhari whose powerful member of his cabinet is considered as the de facto vice President, Mamman Daura his nephew. I am sure it could be strange to Nigerians that, Kabir Daura, Personal Assistant to the President is Mamman Daura’s son. From our findings, Abba Kyari, Chief of Statff to the President is also a foster child of same Mamman Daura. As if, those are not enough, Hadi Sirika, Minister of State for Aviation is President Buhari’s elder brother’s son. Hadi Sirika has an elder sister – a niece to the President, her name is Amina Zakari who was INEC acting Chairman last year. Then there is Aisha Abubakar who was not even a member of APC, but today she is the Minister for Trade, Industry and Investment. Her mother is President Buhari’s sister. Despite making our National Affairs become a one man’s family affair, the National leader decided to close his eyes and keep himself away from him lest he is called names.
Even the vice President who was seen to have been nominated by Asiwaju has been relegated and constantly humiliated because of his closeness to his political leader. Aside from being Chairman of the National Economic Team which primary aim was to rubbish the man of God, he is made to represent The President at different official functions like Personal Assistant or ordinary Special Adviser.
While Asiwaju, the mentor of leaders, is hard thinking and hard working to improve the welfare and well-being of our people, some few errant members of the defunct CPC are feverishly busy planning and scheming for 2019. Truth is the best disinfectant of all lies. We believe in no distant time, the truth will prevail and the real enemies of our great party, great country, and our great people will be unmasked.
*** Hammed Gafar Abdullahi, is the Publicity Secretary, The Salvage Group of APC