Asiwaju BAT @ 59: His Life in God's Hands

The dangerous and tragic political scenarios we had in 2002 which led the brutal murder of our own Chief Bola Ige in Ibadan and the eventual stealing of votes especially in the South West Nigeria is threatening to repeat itself in 2011. This time the target is  Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, the confirmed leader of the opposition in Nigeria . In our own very eyes and through dint of hard work and commitment to rule of law and democracy, the Governor Emeritus of Lagos has dramatically and systematically changed the political equation in Nigeria , giving the ruling Party, PDP a run for their money.       In 2003 the Cicero of Esa Oke of the blessed memory just wanted to secure the South West for his Party, the Alliance for Democracy (AD) and have the doors shut against the political criminals and the nest of killers in the ruling party. Bola Ige thought that we have had sufficient experiences and lessons of history to play politics of principles, issues, values and ideas having suffered dictatorship and brutality from IBB and Abacha for close to 15 years. Bola Ige thought he was dealing with real politicians and democrats but that was never to be. Those who saw him as a stumbling block reasoned that for them to capture South West, Bola Ige must be removed out of the way. And they did it.       Today Asiwaju Bola Tinubu is not only fighting to return South West to ACN, he has spread the tentacles of this Great Party to all nook and crannies of Nigeria selling the biggest and most disciplined brand in Nigeria . From Lagos to Edo, from Ekiti to Osun, from Akwa Ibom to Rivers, from Adamawa to Benue, from Imo to Anambra, from Bayelsa to Abia, from Anambra to Kwara, from Ogun State to Oyo State, from Niger to Zamfara, from Kebbi to Sokoto etc. ACN is giving PDP no breathing space. Few years back, PDP said it is going to rule Nigeria for 60 years and today in 2011, PDP leaders cannot have the temerity to repeat that statement. Forces of history have made the ruling Party to pay attention. The ruling Party has now realized that no condition is permanent and no one individual or organization or party can say that it is the final word in Nigeria .       But one man and his formidable team prepared, worked and got us to this stage. One man and his fantastic team restored the dignity of the opposition in Nigeria . Just one man and his group of committed followers moved clinically and systematically to lay the foundation for the growth we are witnessing in the political landscape today. For this, the Asiwaju of the opposition in Nigeria has become the greatest threat to PDP in Nigeria . Asiwaju is now a marked man to be physically removed or eliminated, if PDP is to remain relevant in Nigeria . The political criminals in this party called the nest of killers, shrine of corruption, cesspit of corruption, citadel of deceit, house of cards and Poverty Development Party do not believe in ideas or power of critical thinking. Because the party is not prepared for what it is witnessing now, violence has become a way of life for them. Violence is now the second name of PDP.       Our friends in the system have been calling us to warn that Asiwaju is giving them sleepiness nights all over Nigeria including Abuja and that we must be proactive in handling this serious security matter. Several meetings have been held in Abuja , Ogun, Oyo and few other places and to all intents and purposes, our friends in the system kept on telling us that Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu has constantly remained the subject of discussion.       Now, must we fold our hands in the face of these repeated threats on the life of the leader of our great party, ACN? Do we need to wait until he is cut down before we start screaming? Have we not learnt sufficient lessons from history? Have we been able to resolve the murder cases of some high profile Nigerians in recent times? Can we trust the police controlled by the PDP-led federal government? It is only a tree that stands in the face of the woodman's axe.       We are therefore using Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu 59th birthday celebration to appeal to President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Dr Ebele Goodluck Jonathan to take personally the very important issue of protecting the leader of the opposition in Nigeria . It is in the interest of the President and the ruling Party that nothing happens to Bola Ahmed Tinubu. From our tragic experiences in the past, we may not trust the police and all the nation's security agencies controlled by PDP in matters of providing security to Asiwaju. President Goodluck Jonathan should handle this by himself. Should anything happen to Bola Ahmed Tinubu, the 2011 elections may be put in great jeopardy and if care is not taken the transition programme may be derailed.       The President's Party, PDP is becoming desperate and dangerous. The hand writing on the wall is repeatedly giving a warning signal to the ruling party that it is not business as usual. The politics of 2011 elections is to be driven by issues, values, ideas, superior argument, antecedents, service delivery, leadership, accountability etc. Violence can never win this election for any party. As I write this political violence has claimed lives in Benue , Borno, Akwa Ibom, Ogun, Ondo, and few other places. Nobody needs to die for any party to win election in Nigeria . It is not worth it! Political violence is unacceptable. Let the Federal Government and their security agencies save the lives of Nigerians.       At 59, Asiwaju Ahmed Bola Tinubu has remained an issue in Nigeria , always standing for the poor, making case for democracy and ruler of law, grooming great minds to provide leadership through out Nigeria , and showing the way forward. He has become a political character in the mode of the late Chief Obafemi Awolowo, richly blessed by God with a sharp third eyes and infinite capacity to search and bring forth committed cerebral men and women whom he pushes forward for the good of the common wealth. I have said several times and I will continue to say it that Northern and the Eastern Nigeria need persons in the mould of Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu for this country to sit up. I have said it before and I am saying it again that I have lived in Lagos for more than 30 years and without sounding immodest, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu commands the type of respect Chief Emeka Odumegwu Ojukwu commands in Igboland today. Just like there are people who can lay down their lives for Ojukwu in Igboland, there are people who can lay down their lives for Asiwaju in the South West and beyond Southwest. This is not a joke.       This is as a result of long history of hard work and sacrifice. You do not just show up accidentally in the World Series. Work praises a man! Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu as a consummate leader is very important to millions of Nigerians including this writer. He has become a role model in Nigeria and Africa . Few weeks back I wrote: 'one of the greatest achievements I have recorded in life is the fact that I am at peace with my creator. The second achievement is the family God gave me and the third is the day God brought me in contact with Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu. I have been trained, I have been taught the nitty gritty of leadership and he has opened the byways, highways, subways and super ways for me to mix with the right people'     Asiwaju has also done this to thousands of Nigerians irrespective of religion, tribe, tongue or culture. This is vintage Asiwaju. This is what we call Asiwaju phenomenon. At 59, I am only begging God for one thing now. Please God preserve and protect Bola Ahmed Tinubu from the hands of nest of killers in Nigeria . We must have a successful election in April and Nigeria must move to the next level.     Joe Igbokwe   Lagos