“The greatest evil is not done now in those sordid dens of crime that dickens love to paint” wrote C. S. Lewis. “It is not even done in concentration camps and labour camps. In those we see the final result. But it is conceived and ordered, moved, seconded, carried and minuted in clear, carpeted, warmed, and well-lighted offices, by quiet men with white collars and cut fingernails and smooth shaven cheeks who do not need to raise their voice.”
We naively thought with Abacha went the imperviousness of men. The man whom Wole Soyinka described his honour by the government of Goodluck Jonathan as “a century’s degeneracy in one preeminent symbol, then placed it on a podium for the nation to admire, emulate and even – worship,” sat on our commonwealth and looted so much that the United States Department of Justice called his frozen loot of $480m the “largest forfeiture in the Department Of Justice history.”
But recent revelations are beginning to sound as though the shadow of the late despot still hover across the country for one is left with no choice other than to wonder what knowledge or sophistry of weaponry Raymond Dokpesi has to place him in a position to supplier arms! Can the media mogul differentiate between a gun and a microphone? Not forgetting that DAAR communication owes several of her staff salary arrears running to several months, Raymond Dokpesi’s company has failed to communicate to its shareholders since they invested in his company.
I recall expending all of my savings (N12, 000) to purchase the DAAR shares almost ten years ago and since then, the only feedback I got was a copy of my certificate. As I write, not a single correspondence has been sent to me from the company of Raymond Dokpesi. That this man steals from his employees, milks his shareholders, and now, has a hand in the continued terrorisation of the country is enough to forget him behind bars.
He has come out to inform the nation that the N2bn he got from Dasuki was strictly meant for projecting the image of the PDP and by implication, soil the reputation of the then opposition party, the APC. How laughable! When has the office of the National Security Adviser become an appendage of the PDP that doles out money to media organisations to sell candidates?
The $2.1bn arms scandal—more than anything else—should instigate a fresh appraisal of one’s loyalty to Nigeria. For a scandal aptly linked to the case of an onion whose continued intervention by the knife only exposes layer upon layer, the arms deal can be summarily linked to a tree having former President Goodluck Jonathan as its root, the erstwhile NSA, Mr. Sambo Dasuki ($2.1bn) as its trunk, and, Messrs. Raymond Dokpesi (N2bn), Attahiru Bafarawa (N100m), Isah Yuguda (N1.5b), Bukola Saraki (N250m), etcetera, occupying varying positions on its stem.
They see every opportunity as an avenue to enrich their pockets. The bombing of torsos and tearing of limbs neither deterred them nor made them have a rethink about their crimes against the Nigerian people. The world is yet to come to terms with the Chibok abduction, neither have the families of the slain soldiers who lost their lives defending their country.
This is why some of us knew that Candidate Buhari’s vacuous words during electioneering of not probing previous administrations were only a tool to comfort the political class. With scandals falling over each other, even nature would not forgive Nigeria if she looks the other way by equating the peaceful handing over of power to waiving the treasonable acts of these men; for their acts of larceny is humongous, their crimes, fictitious; and their contempt for the laws of the land scares the shit out of the devil.
That the worth of a Nigerian life is not worth a cent is daily magnified by the inhumane acts of Boko Haram boys. It is though not surprising why the war on terror has put Nigeria in the trenches even as the defence budget keeps rising. Between 2011 and 2014 for instance, a total of N1.488tr was budgeted for defence but instead of getting commensurate results, the terror boys grew fangs and feathers, will and might, attacking and looting with little or no barrier between them and their victims.
We are yet to hear a thing. This is the very reason why every Nigerian as a matter of necessity should throw their full weight behind President Buhari. The dividing issues of religionism and spiritualism, tribalism and political affiliation should not surface if we are to regain the country back from these charlatans and evil men.
As a youth corps member presently teaching mathematics in Jebba, Kwara State, I teach students whose destinies have been forever tainted by a government who prioritises frivolities to educating the populace; senior secondary school students who finds it impossible to add 2+2, spell their names correctly and understands basic English not because they were born handicapped, but for the singular fact that they found themselves in a society who has leaders whose sense of reasoning is restricted to the lining of pockets.
The degoatification exercise has come to stay irrespective of the distractions the loss of the PDP is causing – the latest being the struggle for a sovereign state of Biafra – or the recent rumbling of one Bruce Fein, a United States lawyer who saw no reason to write Barack Obama on his country’s foreign policy of annihilation and imperialism but was quick to address the Nigerian president. Thousands continue to die annually from childbirth as millions remain out of school; bombs go on every minute killing thousands of able men, women and children in the north east yet, public officials, politicians and businessmen failed to rise up to their selfish interests to protect their people. We die from preventable diseases as small as malaria all in this country that has got both human potential and material resources to the envy of other nations of the world.
Television was in our homes way before the French ever dreamt of owning one. Place Nigeria beside France today and you’ll see clearly what has made them surpass us: the Diezanis’, Dasukis’ and Dokpesis’.
The nation will know no peace until their legacies are confined to no other place but the dustbin of history.
Modiu Olaguro writes from Jebba.
Who Will Explain Coronavirus To Buhari?
Coronavirus (COVID-19), an exorable doom, threatens life on the planet. It is exorable because it is conquerable. This explains why world leaders are taking the charge to combat this ominous apocalypse. It is a time for leadership from the fore-end; a time when citizens must hear their leaders speak to them; see them take action, making assurances and fulfilling those promises. The counsel, consolation and firm statement of a leader is imperative at this moment.
In Canada, Justin Trudeau, prime minister, despite being in self-isolation and his wife battling the virus after contracting it at a conference in the UK, is leading the fight against this dreaded disease from the fore. He is providing regular updates of the efforts of his government to roll back this scourge, listening and speaking to citizens.
In a popular broadcast on March 13, Justin spoke to citizens of Canada announcing measures to relieve the financial stress brought on by the pandemic on Canadians.
“We do not want any Canadian to have to worry about whether or not they’re going to be able to pay their rent, whether or not they’re going to be able to buy groceries, or care for their kids or elderly family members. We need to make sure that Canadians have the options and the ability to follow the best public health advice and keep themselves safe,” he said.
In the UK, Boris Johnson, prime minister, leads the struggle against coronavirus. He provides updates, alongside health experts, on the measures his government is taking to tackle the spread of the disease. And in the US, Donald Trump is not shying away from speaking to Americans on the virus.
As a matter of fact, President Muhammadu Buhari’s lapses are often easily dismissed by his supporters or by Nigerians who do not know better. Some of them say, ‘’ Why must the president speak when the minister of health and the NCDC DG are already doing that?” This is a contemptible rationalisation of incompetence. Are they suggesting the president lacks the capacitance to understand the issues?’’
Really, I surmise the president has been walled off the ‘’candid cameras’’ over the years by his handlers – not just now – because he lacks the intellectual propensity to understand and discuss incisive issues. The last presidential media chat he held was in 2015 and it was a woeful outing. Also, his non-choreographed media interviews have been abysmal to say the least.
The truth is the unfiltered Buhari is a vacuously gaffing one. On October 14, 2016, standing beside Angela Merkel, German chancellor, Buhari said his wife, Aisha, ‘’belonged in the kitchen and the other room’’, when he was asked to comment on the first lady’s criticism of his government.
On April 18, 2018, at the Commonwealth Business Forum in London, the president said the young citizens of the country he leads are lazy.
“More than 60 per cent of the population is below 30, a lot of them haven’t been to school and they are claiming that Nigeria is an oil producing country, therefore, they should sit and do nothing, and get housing, healthcare, education free,” he said during a panel appearance with world leaders at the forum.
In a February 2016 interview with UK Telegraph, Buhari dropped another clanger. He said the young citizens of his country have a knack for criminality and should not be granted asylum in the UK.
With the Buhari experience, it is indubitable that Nigerians must place a high premium on education — not just certificate – in choosing their leaders. The cost of electing leaders who do not have the intellectual grit to understand and handle matters is far too high.
The senate has asked the president to speak to citizens on this threat, and Nigerians are also asking the president to speak to them. This is an abnormality. Citizens must not beg to hear from their president. But because it is Buhari involved here, we have to beg and even excuse the crass inefficiency and vacuity.
Perhaps, the president is still trying to get a hang of it. I think he has ‘’capable handlers’’ who can break it down to him in ABC.
Mr President, speak to your citizens. The words of a leader are more resounding and assuring than the blandishment of proxies.
PS: Let’s follow all health protocol as advised by the NCDC.
• Wash your hands regularly with soap under running water.
• Cover your mouth and nose properly with handkerchief or tissue paper when sneezing and/or coughing. You may also cough into your elbow if a handkerchief is not available.
• Avoid close contact with anyone showing symptoms of respiratory illness such as coughing and sneezing.
• Avoid self-medication, report to the nearest health facility when you experience any of the above-mentioned symptoms.
Fredrick Nwabufo is a writer and journalist.
Sanusi: Once Upon An Emir, By Wole Olaoye
We are all potential Ex-es: ex-student, ex-director, ex-lecturer, ex-senator, ex-governor, ex-president, ex-oba, ex-emir…. The inimitable Zik famously reminded us when he had a spat with Ukpabi Asika that Ex was an inevitable prefix for any human being as was evidenced by the fact that a certain young man who would someday become an ex-Administrator, was the son of an ex-postmaster!
So, what’s so apocalyptic about Sanusi Lamido Sanusi joining the ranks of ex-potentates? Nothing? Everything! Don’t ever think that bell you are hearing is tolling for the former Emir of Kano. No. It could be signalling the beginning of a comprehensive demystification of traditional rulership by plebeians holding tenured political power. In centuries past, no plebeian messed with the traditional institution. The halo of nobility, the sheer vastness of a prince’s hereditary powers, rights and privileges, made the subject know his place.
Yesterday’s subjects are today’s political sovereign. They make no pretences to sophistication. They load a gun to kill a spider. When you dethrone a monarch and then deprive him of his liberty, forcefully banishing him to a place without electricity and potable water, you are playing god. If it was all a public relations Olympics, the calm dignity with which Sanusi handled the humiliation made people all over the world admire his chutzpa and hand him the gold medal. A
Life and its many puzzles! Why is it that for some men and women, “their sleep is taken away unless they cause some to fall”? What do you do about an ego that knows no satiation? As the Preacher in the Good Book timelessly says, “All the rivers flow into the sea, yet the sea is never full… The eye is not satisfied with seeing, nor the ear content with hearing… there is nothing new under the sun”.
The Yoruba have a poem that says just that. “The horse struts and frets and then dies. Being a veteran walker is no immunity to getting lost. Nothing new under the sun. I’ve seen kings reduced to slaves; and servants who mounted the throne. Haven’t my eyes beheld both river and sea? Haven’t I seen a hunchback on spindly legs, and a midget climbing a ladder to add condiment to the soup pot? Tell me, has anyone ever started a building from the roof?
The new Emir of Kano, Alhaji Aminu Ado Bayero, is a cousin of his predecessor. As royal intrigues go, when the dust is settled the sword will be sheathed and brother will embrace brother. That is the way of princes. Eventually, outsiders will realise that all they can ever be in palace politics is outsiders. Our very own Nobel prize winning Kongi was not amused by the scandalous extra-judicial detention of the former emir.
He put the emir’s travail down to his progressive stance: “Emir Sanusi was a one-man EFCC sanitisation squad in the banking system, taking on the powerful corrupters of that institution…. “Most important of all, and most pertinently for the nation, Sanusi was one of the early warning voices against religious extremism whose bitter fruits the nation is currently reaping….
The doors of enlightened society remain wide open to Muhammad Sanusi. As for his current crowing Nemesis, a different kind of gates remain yawning to receive him when, as must, the days of governorship immunity finally come to an end.” Support for Sanusi is not limited to radical voices.
Veteran technocrat Alhaji Ahmed Joda penned a panegyric in support of the ex-emir: “The purpose of this letter to you is not to commiserate with you, because I know that you must have known the likely consequences of the principled position you have taken. The reality we must face in Northern Nigeria is that the evil forces of feudalism that have kept us in bondage for so long are still there and fighting. You have been the only voice that has been telling us this truth….”
It is easy to kick a man given a pin-fall by fate, or piss on the grave of a fallen warrior. Dead men don’t bite. Real friends show up when you are in life’s valley. Say what you will, I would rather have a friend like Nasir el Rufai when the chips are down. In the midst of all the turmoil, conspiracy theories have surfaced to the effect that the dethronement is but a political sleight-of-hand to propel Sanusi to Nigeria’s presidency in 2023. Caution! Let’s separate the issues. Political succession is totally different from fundamental human rights. Sanusi is not my next president.
My views on power rotation are well documented. The ex-emir will go down in history as a champion for the rights of the poorest of the poor. He advocated for a new Northern Nigeria where old backward practices such as the almajiri system and irresponsible parenting will be abandoned. His was the voice crying out in the desert, lift my people up from the cesspit of penury. The attempt to demonise him after dethronement through various allegations, including one on religious fundamentalism, is dead on arrival. The same fate will befall the vilification of El Rufai on account of his loyalty to Sanusi. Please quote me: Modern challenges can never be resolved with a resort to medieval solutions.
Christopher Hitchens’ Q&A may someday apply to the ex-Kings College boy who’s now an ex-king.
Sanusi Dethronement: The North Only Beheads The Bearers Of Truth
By Fredrick Nwabufo
Northern Nigeria is prostrate. It is the axis of uglies – banditry, insurgency, kidnapping, diseases, ignorance, and drug abuse. Alas! The region’s elite are aware of the problems, but look away because the disequilibrious status quo sustains them. What is petrifying, however, is that they maul and clobber at anyone who spits the truth in their faces.
I think, this is the mortal sin of Muhammad Sanusi II, emir of Kano – beyond his politics with Abdullahi Ganduje, governor of Kano.
The World Bank says 87 percent of Nigeria’s poor are in the north. And that while poverty is plummeting in the south, it is rocketing in the upper region.
“Poverty in the northern regions of the country has been increasing especially in the north-west zone. Almost half of all poor lived in the north-west and the north accounts for 87 percent of all poor in the country in 2016,’’ the Bretton Woods institution said in its report entitled ‘Advancing social protection in a dynamic Nigeria’ in February 2020.
In August, 2019, the federal government revealed that 1,460 people were killed by bandits in seven months. And that the north-west is the worst-hit by this bloody enterprise. The killings have steadied, expanding in proportion and execution in the region.
In his accustomed manner, Sanusi recently vocalised these depressing figures of retrogression in the north – as regards the World Bank report — earning himself praise from progressive Nigerians and reprimand from the usual suspects — those stuck in the cesspit of bigotry.
Also, the gadfly emir of Kano, whom I regard as the John the Baptist of the north for his vociferous condemnation of this status quo, is alone in his advocacy against irresponsible polygamy, Al-majiri and child marriage – practices the northern elite espouse. He is the face of a progressive north; the northerner of the new age.
As a matter of fact, on different occasions he had complained about the northern elite whom he said wanted to silence him for speaking the truth about the region.
‘’Our colleagues and compatriots among the elite do not like statistics. Numbers are disturbing. I recently gave a speech in which I said the north-east and north-west of Nigeria are the poorest parts of the country. This simple statement of fact has generated so much heat; the noise has yet to die down. The response to this speech has been a barrage of personal attacks and insults aimed at silencing any voices that dare shine the light on the society to which we are saying Bring Back our Girls,’’ he said at a lecture held to commemorate the Chibok girls abduction.
And I guess they can only take the throne away from him but cannot take away his royalty in the community of decent humans. Really, I believe the emir would rather give up his throne than be gagged by the shareholders of iniquity.
To say the least, Sanusi’s dethroning was not unexpected. Ganduje had always shown his hand in this plot. Really, the emir of Kano never hid his dislike for him. But what is there to like about a governor who was allegedly caught on camera stuffing wads of dollars into his babariga? In the build-up to the 2019 governorship election in the state, the emir was not shy in expressing his disapproval to Ganduje’s candidature.
So, Ganduje, who considers Sanusi a ‘’loud mouth’’, plotted a bitter revenge after he was re-elected. He had moved to remove the emir in 2018 but for the intervention of some ‘’higher powers’’. However, he whittle-down the power of the emir by creating new emirates from his domain. He was not done though. He rustled-up allegations, set up probe panels – all in the desperation to embarrass Sanusi.
But Sanusi was still talking.
Really, one of the most abrasive places to exist is in the circle of non-progressives. You talk different, think different or act different, they will feel threatened. Even when you try to clown around; the aboriginal clowns will still feel threatened because you do not look the part.
I think, Emir Sanusi is light-years away from the people he is dealing with in Kano government. He is needed more at the top echelon of government where he can contribute more meaningfully to the development of Nigeria.
Northern Nigeria is not ready for an emir like Sanusi. He is ahead of his time.
Fredrick Nwabufo is a writer and journalist.
- Entertainment18 hours ago
‘I Don’t Believe In Sleeping Around To Make Money’ – Actress Destiny Etiko
- Entertainment12 hours ago
Actress Eniola Badmus Shows Off Her Trimmer Figure In New Bikini Photo
- Entertainment12 hours ago
BBNaija’s Khafi Issues Stern Warning To ‘Womb Watchers’
- Entertainment18 hours ago
Yemi Alade Advises Nigerian Entertainers To Save, Invest
- Entertainment13 hours ago
Singer Kcee Reacts As Toke Makinwa Picks Bone Straight Hair Over True Love
- Football22 hours ago
Diego Maradona: Biography And Facts (Video)
- Entertainment12 hours ago
‘My Chef Of 5 Years Just Built His House’ – Toke Makinwa
- Entertainment12 hours ago
Actress Lota Chukwu Celebrates Birthday With New Photos