YERIMA: AN IRRITANT
At last, he spoke. He couldn't have done otherwise. He couldn't have resisted a minute longer. He was forced to break his ungolden silence to our delight. His crude conscience could not carry him any further. He was in great pains to explain his absurd and awkward behaviour. It was stranger than fiction.
He had to do what he did under severe pressure. He was seriously uncomfortable. So? He shamelessly caved in like a loose park of cards.
Worst still, he did it with all the arrogance in him. He exhibited it with the greatest disdain. It was glaring. He vomited the little he said in duress.
His defence was baseless and did not help matters. All the same, he did speak. He nearly took us for a big fool. We almost fell for him.
But that was then. Ahmed Sani Yerima, a supposedly distinguished Senator of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. He rode on the back of the innocent for a ridiculous long time.
Yerima, we can recollect vividly. Since he rudely shot into our life. That was on May 29, 1999. He has irritatingly remained in our innocuous psyche. We have been very naÃ¯ve. And he held sway as the helmsman in his Zamfara State for eight years.
Those years? Better imagined than experienced. He nearly turned this country upside down. He blazed the trail. He bluntly experimented Sharia (the Islamic law), in Zamfara.
He was bold and brazen. He tested the waters. And turned the state to one massive and enormous laboratory. Like harmattan, it spread and caught up with almost all the states in the North. His profile skyrocketed instantly. He became a model of sort for the Muslim faithful, especially in the North. He did not stop at that. He was the rave of the moment. And he raved and raged on like a raven. He did not care a hoot, whose ox was brutally gored. The accolades were intriguing. And Yerima was carelessly encouraged. He went all out into the practical enforcement of Sharia. And some limbs and legs became victims of his strange doggedness.
Yerima simply opted for the absurd. He chose to close his mind, eyes, ears to all the hues and cries that persistently trailed his actions and inactions. All these never made sense to him. He held on to his own brand of Sharia. Sure. Yerima did not have all easy ride. A lone voice sprang up, and remains consistent till date. Right from the inception of Sharia in Zamfara, that voice has refused to budge. The voice sticks to his gun. Today, he appears vindicated. FLASHBACK: Well over two years ago, precisely on January 13, 2008. A fellow Zamfara State Senator like Yerima, Senator Lawal Shuaibu told Sunday Sun:
'…I pray that God allows us to live long to see how God is going to deal with him (Yerima) because I can assure you whoever makes a mockery of the word of God is not going to end well.' Shuaibu was furious. It was like a curse. He was at a great loss. And he was emphatic that God would judge Yerima for making mockery of Islam. Shuaibu has not changed his position. And Yerima forged on in his foray. He has since added some bizarre feathers to his soiled cap. It seems there is no stopping him.
One of such is his insatiable desire for baby brides. One of his former close associates was reported to have confessed that Yerima 'likes them small'. He was apt and precint. This senator is irredeemably addicted to the minors. He 'loves' them quite small and petite. And he cares less if he breaches the law of the land in the process. As long as it satisfies his lust and evil desire.
His brute refutal: 'I have not done anything that violates Sharia. So, I am not bothered… I don't think I have committed any offence.'
He was definite. He did not pretend. He did not mince words. He dared the law of the land: 'As a Muslim, as I always say, I consider God's law and that of His prophets above any other law.' He was dead serious and damned the consequences: 'I will not respect any law that contradicts that (God's law).' Then the great challenge: 'Whoever wants to sanction me for that is free to do that.'
Yerima maintained: 'This law (Child Rights Act) they are talking about was enacted and we did not sign it. I don't agree with that law.' We could deduct from his brassy utterances that he went through hell, trying to build up a weak defence. That serves him right. He asked for it. And he got it in good measure. He should know. He is a Senator and a party to the law. But he greatly missed the point. Whether Yerima likes 'that law', or not, since he was not able to shoot it down before it passed from a Bill to an Act, he MUST abide by it.
This is not a time for sentiments. The bill was adequately debated. There were public hearings on it. All this while, Yerima could cause its stoppage. He cannot disclaim the Act now that he is deeply involved. His was a lame and lazy excuse. It will never hold water. That is why Yerima is foolhardy. He is desperately looking for where to hide. He wants a law to hang on to. But he is not doing that cleverly. He goofs. He is only hiding behind a finger. And his hypocracy is exposed almost immediately.
Where does he situate his weird and wild 'marriage' to a minor of 13 years old? Yes. He denied the innocent Egyptian is not 13. But he could not muster enough courage to shout the true age of his baby wife. Yerima can have as many wives as his appetite can carry him but not minors. He should allow the young to grow and mature. He should put his passion in check. He has clearly demonstrated to us that he is hard to bend, that he is not ready to mend or amend. That he remains stubbornly defiant. It is the worst form of complex.
Since he was thrown up as a public figure over 10 years ago. Yerima constantly eats controversy, drinks controversy, smells controversy and above all, swims in controversy with dexterity. Strangely enough, he pretends to enjoy every bit of his controversial life. False life! Sure, there is a viable way-out for the embattled Yerima. Now that we know his problem and complex, it is in our own best interest to encourage him to put his lust on hold.
No! We don't need to bundle him to a psychiatrist. That will be degrading to a distinguished Senator, and it can be counter-productive. Instead, we need to design a well-structured re-orientation programme. Why? He needs to be thoroughly de-briefed. We won't force him. Never. It has to be extremely voluntary and self-induced. If not, it will backfire.