Our journey into the 4th republic started with hope. 1999 began the race with the rest of the world. Obasanjo was the man at the center, Tinubu, the man at the Center of Excellence. No other word can describe the opposition provided by BAT under AD. The dice was cast and Tinubu beat the progressives Elders in the game they thought him. ACN was formed as an offshoot of the progressive family.
If all virtues of progressivism were lost by Asiwaju one was left, the skills and dynamism of opposition. It was simply excellent! PDP was tackled on the streets and Obasanjo was taught several times in court, lessons in the rule of law and in constitutional democracy.
But ACN was slow paced in its conquest drive for political control of the South West, but for advance tribunal methodology, that saw to it that Osun, Ekiti and Edo States were taken over, it would have been restricted to Lagos!
By 2015, a political propaganda machinery of unequal proportion in the history of the world was supervised by the enigmatic Bola Ahmed Tinubu. PDP was battered on all media, and Buhari was successfully sold for what he wasn’t!
If today is a regret to all, I doubt if it is, to Jagaban! He knew what his fellows in the new ship of APC were capable of, but he presumed he will have no problems outwitting them in the game, but alas, they are not as dull as they look!
Respect must be given to Tinubu against PDP, but I don’t see him surviving the civil war in APC between CPC and the ACN components in the party.
Sentiment is one thing we must not allow to drive our decisions as we approach 2023! Over dose of it drove us to the brink we are in today. My opposition to Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s ambition for 2023 presidential race has absolutely nothing to do with hatred. Truth be told, he is too burnt out for the dynamism to be provided, bruised and beaten by the code of conduct to escape the oligarchy prows without something to pick. Though, he is the tongue tagged progressive leader of the Yoruba people of South West Nigeria, but my understanding and experience of progressive leadership of Lagos State under the leadership of Lateef Kayode Jakande makes him look like nothing but a capitalist hidden behind progressivism to fester his nest!
The lion of Boudillon is too old to hunt and if left to it, the horn of an antelope may hurt it and end its life!
Let me pull a paragraph from my last article on him, titled, “A Tripling Jagaban”, which makes me a prophet to the nation of Nigeria. “To save us from the risk of fostering any invalid on ourselves in 2023, I will suggest that a bill should be drafted by the office of the Attorney General of the Federation and should be forwarded to the National Assembly insisting on a comprehensive medical examination for everyone offering themselves for service to our nation who are above the age of 60, which must be made public”. Malami is too busy with how to keep the list of sponsors of terrorism away from the public to bother about this all important issue!
The decision of APC to zone Presidency to the South is a welcome development, but the fatal consequences of a President who has passed his/her flower must be kept in focus. The decision of Atiku Abubakar to withdraw from 2023 race on the grounds of being 77years old, though still looking smart and fit, is to help us avoid the parable that Joe Biden has become to United States of America!
Atiku, though 77 has not shown the aging signs that BAT has become. It was first revealed at a book launch in the comfort of the banquet hall of the Presidency, where though big, but the retina of Jagaban captured the image of Mrs Osibanjo but the memory affixed a different name!
Then came the figure muddling in Kano, where an accountant of no mean repute substituted 50,000 with 50 million!
Then came the straw that broke the Carmel’s back, the event was the 2021 Arewa House Lecture, the 11th Sardauna Leadership lecture series, where he was the Chairman of the occasion, all eyes were on him, he was there at the city of the man with the little finger in the Nigeria game of thrones who once showed up in Lagos to teach Muiz Banire and his co-political travelers how to sack political Godfathers which he boasted he has done successfully in Kaduna State!
If Tinubu must trip, why should it be in Kaduna? The threat to sack him from politics remained an empty threat until ageing showed its hands. Tinubu was walking by the high table, exchanging pleasantries with other dignitaries when the unexpected happened!
From a close study of the video of the event available, it was his left knee that buckled, and then the right followed, the struggle that followed showed a body that was hopelessly following his knees, though he staggered, his security details rescued him in time from what would have been the fall of a southern grace on a northern grass!
Eye witness says, the drama was plotted by a sudden decent in the floor level. This however has been generating some concerns for his health and has become a public debate of the state of his health fitness for what lies ahead!
Ageing comes to us in different forms particularly from age 60, this may become pronounced at 70, a recent research has shown that at 70 to 71 a man is considered old, the women have two years advantage over their male counterparts, theirs is pegged at 73. There are however exceptions to this research findings.
In preparation for my mother, late Dorcas Aduke Ogunseye’s 70th birthday in 2010, I had travelled to Ibadan in company of one of my sisters to make necessary arrangements for a successful event, one of which was to decide the event Center and make payment. We were received at our family house by my father who was then 79, he advised that we should leave the cars to make our movements and connections with different events easier. We chased after our 79 years old father all through the movements in the terrain of Apata Ganga, if you know what I mean!
He was very fit while our mother, was already a pitiable sight of her articulate self. Mama teacher had memory challenges. My father recently celebrated his 90th, still showing fitness, I wish President Muhammadu Buhari can. I am sure his driver can’t get him to sign any documents, nor take any undue advantage of him!
Ageing is not a curse but the reality of challenges we are bound to face at certain periods in our lives, it comes with joint changes, ranging from minor stiffness to severe arthritis, bones are easily broken at this period if a fall occurs. Memory loss is the worst of it.
What Jagaban displayed in Kaduna was not different from General Muhammadu Buhari’s experience in the build up to 2019 elections, the then Presidential candidate of the APC tripped in Lokoja at the campaign ground, whether it was caused by sudden stiffness of his joints or severe arthritis, no one could tell, for our joke of a nation never provided us a second opinion, if only for political reasons as in Asiwaju’s case!
The President went on to show several other signs of ageing during his electioneering campaigns. Loss of memory, with difficulty to recognize faces was his bane in Delta State, where he mistook the party Chairman for the State Gubernatorial Candidate and raised his hands to a bemoaned crowd! The situation came to a head when on the set with the candidate hosted by Kadara live on NTA. His obvious ageing sign will later inform my question to the Vice President at the Grill, a platform for campaign with Pastors in Lagos.
My question was coloured without sentiments; Sir, given the embarrassments Nigerians were thrown into by the incoherent responses of Mr President on the candidate, and your attempts at allaying his thoughts in the direction of the questions without success, will you before God and man say that the President is mentally and physically fit for the rigours of duties, if elected as the President? The answer to that question posterity has given contrary to what the Vice President made us believe.
If only ours is a country where the health of our President matters, if only ours is a country where democracy is practised, the state would have carried out the duty it owes us of making known our President’s state of health then, failure to do that should have led to our demand for medical investigations into the reasons our President, tripped in Kogi, fumbled in Delta and showing dementia symptoms when he lifted the hands of the party chairman as that of the candidate. We however carried on as usual as if nothing had happened. The consequence of our inaction is a President deceived by his driver to sign a multimillion naira contract!
How many of such deceptions our President had and will suffer before he will hand over in 2023 is left to the days ahead to reveal!
President Mohammadu Buhari, in his honest state of mind had informed us after his election in 2015, that he will serve for a term of four years. He gave the toil of age on his body and mind as his reasons. However a man known for one thing, which is keeping to his words, changed it and his life time earning of integrity was squandered!
What Buhari informed us of by words, Asiwaju has, with incoherent and fluttering speech at the Presidency, 3 years earlier of his chance. 50 million for 50,000 and with his trippling in Kaduna!
But ọmọ Alhaja is not the type that will give up on his goal. What Buhari fixed in medical tourism in over a 127 days with direct payments from our taxes, he generously, as usual, probably fixed with over flow of Lagos taxes from Alpha Beta and in less than a 100 days!
With a knee worked on, stuttering tongue, unattended to and memory bank untouched, our patient is discharged to come and become President in 2023! It isn’t about whether he will win or not, but the impact of a patient after another on our Presidency and future as a nation should be weighed by APC Delegates. They will do well to give us a body fit for the job, a brain balanced for the duty.
Nigerians must avoid a repeat of Buhari’s incompetence which is compounded in this 2nd term by his being incoherent. We are obviously under a President whom decisions are taken for and duties discharged by proxy!
On the fall in Kaduna, I wrote, “without doubting the floor excuse, Tinubu’s tripling in Kaduna is worrisome, probably a sign of old age that cooperated with the floor, which must have been as a result of knee buckling, also known as knee instability or weak knees. Frequent knee buckling raises the risk of falling and serious injuries. How often this has been happening is left to Asiwaju to let us know. This should be investigated medically, so that we can figure out the underlying causes. Nature has a way of showing its impact on us with aging differently. While I have nothing against old men and women of Asiwaju’s age who want to serve the nation. But everyone who truly loves them should be worried when tripping becomes regular”.
This 90 days sojourn in UK has confirmed that his spoke person lied to us when he said it was the floor, for the floor has not been operated and may never be. Asiwaju’s knee’s operation has finally confirmed that it wasn’t the floor that gave way, but his knee that buckled.
The roles of spoke persons have started in earnest. High Chief Raymond Dokpesi confirmed the confusion of our political elites, when in one speech he echoed the right of the north to 2023 supported by PDP zoning, in the same, he reminded us his support will be for Bola Ahmed Tinubu on APC zoning to the South, not for competence but for that which they shared in the past and will continue to share. If “Share” is it for them, what is it for us? Our elites are party less, they are only interested in places where their share are preserve. We also must learn that whichever the party or candidate, good governance should be it for us.
We can’t but hope that APC Delegates will put the interest of a healthy nation first and give consideration to the need for a healthy Presidential candidate!
Dr Bolaji O. Akinyemi, an Apostle focusing on revival in the church and revolution in the nation, the BID, as he is fondly called, is also a communication strategist.
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