A UNIVERSITY CHANCELLOR AND HIS PREACHMENTS ON VIOLENCE
One of the tragedies of our time is that misfits are fitted with coats meant for the sober and level headed. That is the tragedy of picking the new chancellor for the Ladoke Akintola University of Technology (LAUTECH). To think that the last holder of that office was Basorun M.K.O. Abiola, the man who gave his life for the democracy many misfits are now relishing in, and throwing their weights around and nauseating the rest of us, it is surprising, actually dumb-founding. It is numbing that a man, who has not openly confessed his sins of forging university qualifications, would be given this office and talk the way he did within the university grounds.
No wonder he made the kind of comments he made there about rigging and roasting; a language meant for motor-park touts, political thugs and area boys was brought within the four walls of a university, because, as the popular saying goes, 'by their fruits you shall know them,' or the one my Christian friends always quote, 'from the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaks.' You can only give what you have.
Did anyone also read the comments of His Excellency, Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso, at the matriculation of the North Western University, Kano? What is it with all these PDP people who joined Tinubu and his co-travelers? Suddenly, they have imbibed his ways - the Area boys mentality in all its fullness. It is curious that the fullness of these attributes are manifesting among these latter day progressives only after being in the same political bed with Tinubu. I wonder what our dear General is doing in this company of undisciplined characters. Is the desire for power that demanding that a goat will join the street dog to eat faeces from the bin? General, please return to the Congress for Progressive Change (CPC), or let us set up something else because we can still make it.
In his momentous speech at LAUTECH, the Asiwaju who is endeared to Robin Hood by his own confession, believes it is all right to rob the rich to take care of the poor; but the good people of Lagos who know how much is paid to a revenue consulting firm he is known to have interests in are asking why they are not getting part of what the Lagos State Government, the richest state entity in Nigeria, is being robbed off. So where has the over N3 billion monthly been going to? Is it to win more States in the South-West and feather the nest of the Robin Hood Empire? What about proceeds from Lekki toll gates?
This man says he is a progressive. Hmmm. Read him: 'These conservative elites still dominate the political landscape. While we strive for a progressive era of development, democracy and human respect, this conservative network seeks to relegate you to the status of modern serfs living ramshackle lives, so desperate for a hand-out that you actually thank them when they deign to give you back a small fraction of what they have stolen from you.
'They soak their feet in milk and champagne while the people struggle to find clean water to soak garri. Even brave Robin Hood would run from Nigeria because it operates on principles reverse to those endearing the mythic hero to our imagination. Our system steals from the poor to give to the rich. What is vice and condemned elsewhere is virtue and commended here. This is Nigeria today. But it can't stand as the Nigeria of tomorrow. Change must come; we are ready and strongly determined to break the shackles of poverty and ignorance.'
If we are to believe the statisticians in the World Bank that Nigeria, like great countries like China and India, houses the largest population of the extreme poor; it follows that the States of Lagos and Kano house the largest of these poor persons in Nigeria. By some wicked twist of fate, these are the States of the progressives!
It is instructive that Tinubu, like Buhari, is toeing the same path with government on the Boko Haram menace noting that in due season, the Boko Haram foot soldiers shall be made to pay for what they have done. We hope their sponsors and encouragers will suffer a worse fate.
In one breath, the Asiwaju says, 'As for me and my party, we abhor them and their violent ways. We have no part with them and they have no part with us. Although we are in intense political competition with the ruling party, our competition stays within the confines of electoral competition. We seek your vote, not your lives. Boko Haram is our enemy for the Nigeria we seek has no place for their wicked recreation.'
In another breath, on the LAUTECH premises, this one who wants to be described as a statesman and says his party abhors violence declares that if elections are rigged in the coming Ekiti and Osun elections, 'we are prepared not to go to court but to drive you out. We will not take it anymore. If you mess up in Ekiti and Osun states, you will see our reactions. For every action, there must be a reaction. No government that wants people's votes that will be doing what they are doing. They are planning to rig the elections but be ready to protect your votes. It is going to be rig and roast.'
These were unguarded statements; and, Freudian slips like these is reason the APC is tagged as people with a 'Janjaweed' mentality and area boy tendency by PDP propagandists and other commentators on public affairs. What else can make a man pretend to have finesse, and yet expose himself for the violent man that he truly is? A leopard cannot change its spots.
By the way, on matters of rigging, can Tinubu truly cast the first stone? Or, is it because his henchman in the Court of Appeal has been finally thrown out that he is now judiciary shy? These are, indeed, interesting times.
Written By Mustapha Abdullahi