Says vice-president first consulted Pastor Adeboye before accepting
Blames Saraki, New PDP governors, others for truncating his vice-presidential ambition
Narrates how Bakare, Akeredolu’s names were pushed as possible VP contenders
A National Leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and one of the principal actors that led the campaign to wrest power from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the 2015 elections, Chief Bola Tinubu, has revealed that when he called Prof. Yemi Osinbajo to inform him that he had been chosen to be President Muhammadu Buhari’s running mate to contest the 2015 presidential election, he (Osinbajo) was a bit hesitant.
Tinubu, who made the disclosure in the book, ‘Against the Run of Play – How an incumbent president was defeated in Nigeria,’ written by the Chairman of the THISDAY Editorial Board, Mr. Olusegun Adeniyi, said Osinbajo was hesitant and asked him (Tinubu) to go and intimate the General Overseer of the Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG), Pastor Enoch Adeboye.
“He was a bit hesitant as he asked me to go and tell Pastor Adeboye. I replied by telling him that he needed to inform Pastor Adeboye himself, after all, there had been times when if we needed to see Pastor Adeboye, he was the one who facilitated it.
“I reminded him that since the final choice was not for me to make, I should not go to Pastor Adeboye until after the announcement of his name.
“So, Osinbajo went to meet Pastor Adeboye who reportedly told him, ‘if they offer you, take it’,” Tinubu said in the book which will be launched in Lagos tomorrow.
The book, which also delved into the circumstances that led to Tinubu being sidelined as Buhari’s running mate in the election, despite the prior agreement both men had reached when the APC was being formed that they would contest on a joint ticket, revealed that Senate President Bukola Saraki, other APC governors and senators led the charge to stop the pairing before the party’s presidential primary in Lagos.
“With the former Kwara State governor, Senator Bukola Saraki leading the charge, APC governors and senators agreed to meet with Tinubu to convince him that a Muslim-Muslim ticket would not work.
“At the meeting, Tinubu was non-committal, insisting that the issue of running mate should be discussed only after the primary. To him (Tinubu), it was more important that the governors worked to ensure the emergence of Buhari rather than dissipate energy on who would become the running mate.
“Apparently unsatisfied, Senator Saraki as well as Governors Wamakko of Sokoto and Abdulaziz Yari of Zamfara decided to meet Buhari especially when they had feelers that he could announce Tinubu’s name as running mate the moment he was declared the winner of the primary, thus bringing about another fait accompli.
“The governors did a concise analysis of the situation for Buhari at the meeting. Each one told him about the Christian population in their states and how a Muslim-Muslim ticket would be perceived.
“They added that with such a ticket, it would be difficult to sell Buhari to get many votes from the North-central, a geopolitical zone that was then at play.
“The governors also stated that for the party to win, the running mate had to come from the South-west.
“Similar to Tinubu, Buhari made no commitment to them, but the governors were confident that they had driven the message home.
“But the former military head of state had come a long way and he was not prepared to gamble away what appeared to be his best shot at the presidency after his previous disappointments,” the book revealed.
It went on to narrate that the jostling for the post of running mate moved to Abuja once the primary was concluded, adding that while the names of Governors Rotimi Amaechi and Adams Oshiomhole were also being touted, many within the party hierarchy had decided that the position should go to the South-west.
The book added that in consulting on the issue, Buhari had visited former Vice-President Atiku Abubakar at his Abuja home on Sunday December 14, 2014.
“The former number two man pledged his support to Buhari but warned against picking a Muslim running mate, as that could jeopardise the aspiration of the party.
“On Monday 15th December 2014, Buhari called on Tinubu at his Asokoro residence in Abuja. It was not a pleasant meeting, according to those present.
“The APC presidential candidate explained why he could not go with a Muslim-Muslim ticket. But Tinubu countered that the position was forced on Buhari by his (Tinubu’s) opponents within the coalition who were using religion as an excuse to edge him out.
“Buhari persisted and asked Tinubu to nominate three persons. The South-west leader sent only one name: that of his former Attorney General and Commissioner of Justice, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo,” Adeniyi wrote in his book.
Reflecting on that episode, Tinubu in the book insisted that the campaign against him was orchestrated from both within and outside his party, though what hurt him the most was from within.
“What they (Saraki and others from PDP) did behind my back was wrong. We always do things as a group. By the time they joined, we were already too far ahead in our processes but we accommodated them.
“We agreed to take their state structures and subsume them into the party and they all had the opportunity to nominate the candidates of their choice for different political offices.
“But they went behind to instigate Buhari and some other people in the party against me on the pretext of religion. That was not right. They were canvassing arguments that the Christians in the North would not vote for a Muslim-Muslim ticket.
“Nasir el-Rufai was also selling the same argument within the CPC (Congress for Progressive Change) because at that point, he still wanted to have Pastor (Tunde) Bakare brought in as Buhari’s running mate,” Tinubu said.
Tinubu confirmed to the author that some PDP decampee governors and senators came to him on the eve of the primary to ask whether it was true that he had a deal with Buhari to run together, but he felt the timing and their motive were wrong.
“I told them that it was better to resolve such issues after the primary but they wanted to make it a condition for supporting Buhari which for me was very wrong.
“I told them I could not insist on this as a condition for my support for Buhari. I felt that it was not right to hold Buhari hostage in this manner. We thus canvassed hard for Buhari and threw our support behind him for the primary.
“I believe the support that we gave was fundamental to Buhari clinching the party’s nomination. Without that support, a different outcome would have been most likely,” Tinubu recalled.
The former Lagos State governor, however, did not elaborate on the two other options that he said were also on the cards: (Rabiu) Kwankwaso (then governor of Kano State) and Atiku, in that order. There were those who felt that Kwankwaso, being younger, would make a better choice.
As for Atiku, even though he was perhaps the most prepared for the job, there were many within the party who were not so keen on him.
Tinubu offered more insight on this: “After the primary, there were series of meetings with leaders like Chief Harry Akande insisting that I should be the VP choice. Others, for their own personal reasons, were saying I should not be the person, claiming a Muslim-Muslim ticket would not be accepted at a certain point.”
When it became clear that the opposition to him as running mate was too strong, Tinubu ruled himself out by releasing a public statement; but when Buhari asked for three names, he insisted on submitting only one.
“I told him that I would give him only one name that would not be mine, although I personally believed a Muslim-Muslim ticket could ensure victory.
“I backed out because I did not want to be depicted as causing a problem. I did not want foes inside and outside the party to use my name as a reason to sow division.
“I backed away from the position in order to offer Buhari a name I once raised with him in 2011: that of Prof. Yemi Osinbajo,” the former Lagos governor emphasised.
Tinubu then went on to recall Osinbajo’s reaction when he called him to inform him that he (Tinubu) had given Buhari his name as his running mate.
However, that was just the beginning of the drama, the book continued, because there was no certainty about whether or not Buhari would make the choice.
“In fact, there were indications that others were trying to steer Buhari in another direction that would repeat what happened in 2011.
“Acting contrary to the spirit of a harmonious union, these people believed that we would have no choice but to accept whatever came since the parties had already merged,” he said.
Tinubu faulted hardliner members of the CPC who “seemed to be advancing the names of Pastor Bakare and Mr. Rotimi Akeredolu. Pastor Bakare I could understand but how Akeredolu became a nominee from their side was shocking to me.
“I was later to find out that his connection to certain CPC figures predated his overture to me to become the ACN (Action Congress of Nigeria) candidate in the Ondo State governorship election in 2012”.
Having resolved that he had to make his position very clear to the CPC leaders who were close enough to Buhari to deliver his message, Tinubu said in the book: “I let it be known to some of the CPC people, ‘This is not a closed deal. Anything can still go wrong, so please don’t assume that you can just pick anybody as presidential running mate and we will support the partnership. No, if Osinbajo is substituted for someone else, all bets are off’. I made that very clear.”
The high-wire act also left Tinubu with no option than to be on his guard.
He said: “Once bitten, twice shy, they say. That explains why I did not attend the press conference. I did not want to be taken by surprise a second time in case another name other than the one I submitted was announced.”
In the end, Osinbajo’s name was announced by Buhari as the presidential running mate.
Jonathan’s Pathetic Apologetics
By Punch Editorial Board
Former President Goodluck Jonathan, reflecting on his electoral defeat two years ago, shunned deep introspection and remorse for his five-year reign of impunity. What comes out from him from excerpts of a new book is a potpourri of falsehoods, hypocrisy, lame excuses and blame for everyone but himself. But before Nigerians fall once more for his favourite tactic of playing the victim, they would do well to remember the devastating impact of his bad government.
Words attributed to him in a book, Against the Run of Play, by Olusegun Adeniyi, a well-known journalist, and billed for public presentation in Lagos on Friday, were vintage Jonathan. Posing yet again as the perpetual victim, he blamed former world leaders − Barack Obama of the United States, Britain’s David Cameron, and French president, Francois Hollande − for desperately wanting a change of government in Nigeria. He blamed Attahiru Jega, the former Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission, for allegedly working with the Americans by insisting on the initial February 2015 date set for the presidential election; he blamed his own former party chairman, Adamu Mu’azu, whom he accused of working against him, and he carpeted the press and civil society for highlighting the pervasive corruption that flourished on his watch.
First, the context: As he left a limping economy and widescale corruption behind, Jonathan’s five years at the helm were an unmitigated disaster for Nigeria, the effects of which 170 million Nigerians are experiencing today. He ran the economy aground, failing like his predecessors to diversify effectively and entrenching what The Economist of London labelled “a rentier state.” His government despoiled all fiscal buffers − foreign reserves hardly rose despite persistently high oil prices until August 2014. In its defence, his finance minister claimed that it was $43.13 billion that was inherited, yet, despite oil prices averaging $90-$103 per barrel up till mid-2014, reserves moved barely perceptively, while the Excess Crude Account had crashed from $22 billion to only $2.2 billion when Muhammadu Buhari took over by mid-2015. Jonathan left no major new signature infrastructure project; only inflated repair projects which are mired in controversy.
Arguably his greatest disservice that ought to have been his major triumph was the badly managed privatisation of power assets that transferred most of the generation and distribution companies to untested, incompetent domestic consortia that have saddled Nigeria with a legal quagmire. But it is in the areas of corruption and security that Nigerians were mostly badly done in by that terrible government. Jonathan’s denial that he dismissed corruption allegations as “mere stealing” is false. He declared this on local and international TV. Corruption ran riot on his watch, as attested to by the latest scandals involving his wife, the suspended spy chief who stashed away $43 million in a Lagos apartment, the missing oil receipts being probed in parliament, as well as the $2.1 billion arms purchase fund that ended up in private hands.
While he is whining that Obama and other world leaders, civil society, the media and the opposition alleged corruption “without proof,” the world is still aghast at a sprawling corruption scandal centred on the abuse of N2.53 trillion petrol subsidy in 2011 when only N248 billion was approved in the budget. His government also signed away N603 billion in less than a year for dubious import duty waivers, exemptions and concessions, according to Customs. The fraud associated with oil swap agreements is still unfolding. Hypocritically, he claimed to have dropped Stella Oduah as Aviation minister when evidence emerged, but said he retained Diezani Alison-Madueke as oil minister “because there was no foolproof evidence.” This same ex-minister is alleged to have withdrawn millions of dollars to finance his re-election bid for which she and many others, including electoral officials, are being tried. He disingenuously discredited the Nuhu Ribadu panel report on the grounds of disagreement among some members, but failed to say that he had appointed Steve Oronsaye and Bernard Otti to the board of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation in an obvious move of brinksmanship.
It is not too late for Jonathan to grow up. He may think Nigerians have forgotten and that it is time to move on. This is fantasy. All the colossal scandals that defined his time in government will live on in the minds of the people who bear the burdens of his misrule. Former president Olusegun Obasanjo, who broke all party rules to make him deputy to the late President Umaru Yar’Adua, is quoted in the same book as admitting that from his first days in office, “…he showed that he was too small for the office.” He demonstrated this in his mishandling of the Boko Haram terrorist insurgency. Boko Haram has killed over 25,000 people, displaced over two million and once held 27 local government areas as its “caliphate.” Rather than take full charge, he allowed his generals to turn it into a gold mine for corrupt enrichment, an ATM, according to Obasanjo, for taking money from the treasury.
The influential The Economist once declared that Jonathan ran the most corrupt, most clueless government in Nigeria’s history. We can’t agree more. Indeed, we hold him and his corrupt generals responsible for the failure to rescue the 276 Chibok girls in 2014. His false narrative that he did try to rescue them contradicts reports that he failed to act when initially informed, continuing to view terrorism as a personal conspiracy against him.
Surprisingly, Jonathan has not changed, falsely asserting and boorishly claiming that Boko Haram is being defeated because Buhari is a Muslim, not viewed as an “infidel’’ like he was. But salafist militants view all existing governments as infidels to be violently overthrown. They target the Muslim leaders of Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Egypt, Tunisia, Jordan, Afghanistan, Yemen, Libya, Somalia, Chechnya, Algeria and Bahrain. Boko Haram has killed emirs and has vowed to kill Buhari, the Emir of Kano and the Sultan of Sokoto, the nominal head of Nigerian Muslims.
Jonathan incorrigibly blamed the media for his electoral defeat. We insist he lost the election because he was a total failure. He cites high figures of votes for Buhari in Kano, but was silent on equally suspicious figures for him from the South-South states, from Rivers or from Akwa Ibom and Delta states where votes recorded for him doubled the number of accredited voters.
But we hold President Muhammadu Buhari and the Nigerian people culpable for providing the leeway for Jonathan to trample on our collective memory. While the Buhari government has demonstrated lack of courage to bring Jonathan to justice, many Nigerians celebrate, instead of rising against corruption. Across the world, people of conscience are marching in their thousands to protest against corruption; in broken, dysfunctional Nigeria, hundreds are, for a few wads of naira, marching, vandalising property, and preaching hate in defence of the corrupt. The officials on trial who have claimed to have been obeying Jonathan’s orders by collecting and distributing public funds provide enough grounds to put him also on trial. The anti-corruption war cannot go far unless Jonathan is confronted in court with his misdeeds. Past rulers who break the law are put in the dock. South Korea, Guatemala, Brazil, Peru, Zambia, Italy, France are ready examples. No one should be above the law.
Buhari should save his reputation by pulling out all the stops in the war on graft. Far too many ex-Presidents have demonstrated this belief that they are above the law. Jonathan failed to bring corrupt past leaders to justice, but Buhari must bust the myth. Nigerians should realise that corruption has ruined their present and rendered the future gloomy for their children and rise up against corrupt leaders − past and present. As for Jonathan, he should be reminded that the history of his administration is already being written and it is neither flattering nor can he remodel it with falsehood and whining hypocrisy.
Have you bothered for once to peruse through your children’s school textbooks? I know you are a very busy parent working round the clock to put food on the table for your children. I equally know that you have employed some housekeepers to look after your children on your behalf. But I strongly suggest that you should make out a little time this week, even if it is only for ten minutes, to go through the pages of the textbooks used by your children in their respect schools. If you do so, you will likely be scandalized by what you would find inside the textbooks. When you were in secondary school English literature books such as Macbeth, Julius Caesar, Weep Not Child, Things Fall Apart, Zambia Shall be Free, The Man Died, African Child, Akin the Drummer Boy, Mine Boy, The gods are not to blame, Gulliver’s Travels, Around the World in Eighty Days, Allan Quatermain, King Solomon’s Mine, Eze Goes to School and others, were probably the recommended English literature books.
Exactly 27 years ago, thereabout this time, mortar shots were fired, shot were fired, gunfire and duel was hot.
There was a pronouncement by a soldier, Major Gideon Orkar, there had been a coup, and in his words “Fellow Nigerian Citizens, On behalf of the patriotic and well-meaning peoples of the Middle Belt and the southern parts of this country, I , Major Gideon Orkar, wish to happily inform you of the successful ousting of the dictatorial, corrupt, drug baronish, evil man, deceitful, homo-sexually-centered, prodigalistic, un-patriotic administration of General Ibrahim Badamasi Babangida”
The bravery or gallantry of Major Gideon Orkar and his co-traveler was never in question.
The coup was almost successful, bearing in mind the had to bring the execution of the coup back by one week. They had to seize armoury with their service pistol or assigned side arms, I believe it was a part of his coup speech that failed the coup.
Just like the earlier expedition to break up this country, the Civil war and secession led by Late Ojukwu, the failure on this coup can be hinged on the same error or misgivings.
Below is what I believe made the coup a failure:
“In the light of all the above and in recognition of the negativeness of the aforementioned aristocratic factor, the overall progress of the Nigerian state a temporary decision to excise the following states namely, Sokoto, Borno, Katsina, Kano and Bauchi states from the Federal Republic of Nigeria comes into effect immediately until the following conditions are met.
The conditions to be met to necessitate the re-absorption of the aforementioned states are as following:
(i) To install the rightful heir to the Sultanate, Alhaji Maccido, who is the people’s choice.
(ii) To send a delegation led by the real and recognised Sultan Alhaji Maccido to the federal government to vouch that the feudalistic and aristocratic quest for domination and operation will be a thing of the past and will never be practised in any part of the Nigeria state.
By the same token, all citizens of the five states already mentioned are temporarily suspended from all public and private offices in Middle Belt and southern parts of this country until the mentioned conditions above are met.
They are also required to move back to their various states within one week from today. They will, however, be allowed to return and joint the Federal Republic of Nigeria when the stipulated conditions are met.
In the same vein, all citizens of the Middle Belt and the south are required to come back to their various states pending when the so-called all-in-all Nigerians meet the conditions that will ensure a united Nigeria.
A word is enough for the wise.”
By 6pm when the insurrection and rebellion had been crushed, I look back and see that my countrymen has not learned enough…or didn’t learn a/any thing at all.
When we those pushing for the break-up/balkanisation of this country should come to terms that such project will fail.
Until the face it that there is no coincidence or error(s) in the almangamation of Nigeria, that it’s no mistake, the better for them.
In a nation that believes so much that everything that happen is “God’s will”, then Nigeria is a “God ordained” project.
The lesson here is that we should stop blaming a region for the woes of this country or trying to excise a region from the country, and work together towards and for the greatness of the country.
This is my humble submission.
God Bless Nigeria…
I was fourteen years-old and in Form Four when I first encountered the Greek philosopher, Plato. No, I did not encounter him in the classrooms of Titcombe College, Egbe. I encountered him through Baba Adesanmi’s disciplinary regime: a hybrid of Roman Catholic, African-traditional, and Spartan colonial disciplinary methods.
Depending on the gravity of your offence, if he spared the rod in favour of a long-winding sermon (pure torture for us at the time), then you were in for two hours of philosophies, wisdom nuggets, and anecdotes drawn from a vast arsenal of Yagba, Yoruba, Christian, and Greco-Roman resources.
Your rebuke was delivered in an admixture of Yagba, Yoruba, and Queen’s English interlaced with a lot of Latinisms. As appropriate, Baba would pull out books from his vast library to support a point.
Baba Adesanmi was a bibliophile who built a vast family library spanning many fields of knowledge, notably literature, history and philosophy. He had supreme contempt for the unread mind.
Bola, you were not born to disgrace me.
(Silence for effect)
Bola, se o gbo mi ye? You were not born not to be able to stand out from the pack if your conscience and broader knowledge convince you of the rectitude of your position.
(More silence for effect)
Bola, have I ever told you about Plato? Then he broke Plato down for me like an alo – a Yoruba folk tale. Baba Adesanmi taught me about the Greeks and the Romans by breaking down material from their history, philosophy, and literature into abridged forms and then narrating them to me like my usual Ijapa folk tales.
What did I do to deserve the punishment of Itan Plato (Plato’s story) for nearly two hours as a teenager who would rather have spent that time playing football set with his peers in Form Four?
There was some disagreement between me and some of my peers (the boys) over some issue in R.L. Stevenson’s Treasure Island. Mr. Medaiyedu, our literature teacher’s test, was coming up. In the ways of stupid teenage boys, we agreed that if question X ever came up, we would answer it in a particular way. I had read and studied Treasure Island under Papa Adesanmi’s supervision at home long before it came up in Mr. Medaiyedu’s syllabus so I knew that the group answer was wrong.
Question X did come up. I answered it in solidarity with the group. I did not have the courage to shine the light, to dare to be different and right, because I had been to other spaces of that book and seen things they hadn’t seen courtesy of my father.
Obviously, Baba Adesanmi was scandalized that I nearly failed a literature test. Stupidly, I confessed to him that I knew the right answer but was afraid to go against the group, to open the eyes of the group to a superior reality, to take them beyond the limitations of their circumstances.
Instead of getting a few strokes of Baba Adesanmi’s dreaded pankere, I got a long talk about Plato and his allegory of the cave. And I was made to read an abridged version of it.
A lifetime of extensive readings and studies in literature, philosophy, classics, and other fields would, of course, later take me deeper, much deeper, into Plato and other philosophers.
As I gained awareness of the fact that Plato’s allegory of the cave is one of the most significant metaphors of all times in the history of Western philosophy and thought, as I discovered, during my undergraduate and graduate years, that many of the canonical figures of African liberation and thought such as Frantz Fanon, Ngugi wa Thiong’o, Ousmane Sembene, Amilcar Cabral, Eduardo Mondlane, Patrice Lumumba, and Thomas Sankara saw their own theory and praxis in the light of Plato’s allegory, I would wonder what in the heck was going on in Baba Adesanmi’s mind that he would expose a 14-year-old boy to such philosophical depths.
So, what exactly is this allegory of the cave? It is the most famous segment of Plato’s most famous book, The Republic. I will only offer an elementary sketch of it here for our purposes. I will omit details that are not central to our didactic purposes for Fatherland.
Plato imagines a group of prisoners chained to a wall inside a deep, dark cave. They have been chained to this wall their entire lives. Chains and darkness – that is the sum total of their experience. The only reality they know. They have been in the cave and in chains since birth. Behind them is a fire and before them is a raised walkway. Outside, people pass by the mouth of the cave, carrying things on their head. The prisoners can only see shadows of that reality. The shadows they see also become part of their reality of darkness and chains.
Eventually, one of the prisoners escapes and goes outside of the cave. He is absolutely shocked to discover the world outside of the cave. He cannot believe his eyes. So, he has been living in ignorance his whole life? So, all the things that he and his fellow cave dwellers believed and thought about the world was wrong? So there is even a sun? And there are trees and animals? And there is civilization? And there are ways, much better ways of doing things ‘outside there’ than the only reality that he and his fellow cave dwellers have ever known?
His discovery of the sun is the most significant. Think of everything that Plato dumps into that metaphor of the sun. This man is coming from a cave where nobody has ever been aware of the existence of the sun – of light!
This painful discovery of the world beyond the limitations of his entire life leads to a resolve: he will go back “home” to the cave and take the truth he has seen and discovered to his people.
When he gets back to the cave and informs the other prisoners of his discoveries, letting them know that there are other possibilities to life, other realities outside of chains and darkness, when he tells them stories of reality and tells them that all they have believed their entire lives is false because it has been limited by their chains and life inside the cave, they do not believe him.
They abuse him. They call him names. They threaten to kill him if he attempts to set them free. They accuse him of insulting their world. They tell him they like it just like that. Did they complain to him? What is all this talk about a better life and a much better way of life he has seen elsewhere. It is not his fault. Shebi they are the ones even listening to him after he has betrayed them by going out.
Plato surmises that the cave dwellers will try to kill anyone who tries to free them from their ignorance.
What Plato’s allegory teaches us is that there is no alternative to education and enlightenment. He who acquires education and enlightenment is also a danger to the body politic of ignorance.
If ignorance is the only world somebody knows, you have no right to try to bring light into that world and expect not to be insulted, abused, scorned, and excoriated. There is a reason that the said ignorance is framed as a world in Plato’s allegory. It means you are saying that the only world that Plato’s cave dwellers have ever known is false, wrong, etc. You are “insulting” their world.
That is why you must have the patience to bear the insults and be possessed of the force of conviction to persuade them with the empirical and superior evidence of the superior worlds and truths you have seen.
Plato says that the cave dwellers will attempt to kill anyone who tries to free them.
Plato says education is the only superior force that can free them.
If you are privileged to be a medium of public education and enlightenment, fate and destiny have chosen you for a solemn duty to your fatherland. You have lost the right to such statements as:
I’ve given up.
They rain insults on me any time I write to enlighten them.
They are in love with their chains.
It is Stockholm syndrome.
This is precisely the sort of fatalism that those who turned your Fatherland to a cave and stole money to buy the chains to imprison the people want to achieve in you. If they cannot buy your voice and your conscience, they know that they cannot allow the risk of your enlightenment to radiate through the land and connect with the people. The next best option for them is to get you to point of existential fatalism where you give up. Once you give up because of the daily insults you get from their victims, you clear a conceptual space for them to store up dollars in every apartment in Ikoyi and Victoria Island.
Over the years, Plato’s allegory of the cave has also lost geographic relevance for me in terms of the physical distinction between in and out, home and diaspora. It has come to represent for me the chains and prison of the mind and the escape from it.
Gani Fawehinmi is also Plato’s escapee but he never left the cave physically. He just left the cave of the mind. Tai Solarin, Bala Usman, Eskor Toyo, Chima Ubani, etc, never left the cave physically but they left the cave of the mind and tried to bring the sun back into it. Oby Ezekwesili, Ayo Obe, Ayisha Osori, Joe-Okei Odumakin have never left physically but they left the cave of the mind.
I am saying in essence that being physically outside is not a precondition for gaining the elevated consciousness and enlightenment acquired by Plato’s allegorical character just as being physically inside is not a basis of exclusion from that consciousness.
Whether you are inside or outside, the acquisition of that consciousness in the context of the Nigerian tragedy is a privilege that should be deployed in the service of the people without question.
It is important to remember that those insulting you are not the enemy.
Our only enemies are the owners of the cave and the financiers of the chains.
We must remain committed to their total destruction.
The news of the $43.4m discovered by the EFCC in Lagos upon a tipoff by a whistleblower reminds me of a book I ones read titled “Escobar: The Story of The World Most Powerful Criminal” written by the younger brother of Pablo himself, Roberto Escoba. In the book, while Escobar’s money is said to be scattered & hidden in virtually everywhere and anywhere one can imagine, €5m was discovered hidden in a complex built in the jungle where many cocaine factories existed & are operating from. Upon besieging the property, detectives found a 50 tonne secret vault belonging to Escobar with dollars stashed in. The similarity between the Osborne case & that of Pablo appears to be too identical with Osborne breaking the record of Escobar.
Another example from history abound. In the year 2013, Moscow’s airport being the home of a whistleblower called Edward Snowden was reported to have found £20bn in cash left unclaimed in the airport & to date, the money still remains unclaimed. Some say the money was from Iran. As it is, the money stands out as mysterious.
An insider from the Russian Intelligence Agency who spoke in confidence to a Russian newspaper concerning the moscow €20b unclaimed cash suggested the money could be part of monies wired to Moscow by Sadam Hussein in 2002 for some ……….. The insider warned against digging deep by making a categorical statement saying : “This is more dangerous than you imagine”. The Russian Intelligence Agency insider further stated that those trying to claim the money include Ukrainian spies, Chechen gangstars, Al qaida members, the Knights of Malta, & a foundation called the “World of Kind People”- a foundation that is run by Ukrainian Intelligence Agents. Contrary to the forgone clarified above & Coming back home to the Osborne scandal, Nigeria’s Intelligence Agency (NIA) is the body that has come out to claim the cash proceed without keeping distance to the money. The NIA operating on a different lane when compared to other Intel agencies.
Even though it is official that NIA has claimed the said money, many conspiracy theories abound in the social media space with many pundits lampooning the govt/NIA critically . Many have given it a political colouration while others are seriously condemning the NIA.The DG NIA who happens to be made by the previous admimisttration is acused of either covering for the GEJ administration or covering up for some powerful forces in Buhari’s current govt that has allowed him the power of control over the agency.
Come to think of it, the fact that the NIA claims the money is not an end in itself and it doesn’t stand out as cover up in anyway. The main issue is, who approved that amount to be used for that covert operations? who was responsible for executing the covert operation? how did the monies meant for the NIA ended up in that building under the guise of covert operation? Why was the money not retired?
The fact that an item was missing, diverted along the line & recovered from the lines doesn’t take away the title of ownership from the real owner; the recovery & the claim of ownership by the title owner doesnt exonerate the thief as well.
But by admitting that those dollars are meant for covert operation further redicules the NIA for failing in it’s covert operations. The world over, Intelligence Agencies don’t go public concerning their covert operations. It would have been better if the whistleblower was given his 5% & allow the case to rest as burried monies from dead pecple with the govt waiting for the day a living claimant will fall from the heavens to claim the dead money. Meanwhile, anybody found not to have discharged his/her responsibility or found diverting funds meant for project xyz should be dealt with decisively.