LETTER TO AG. PRESIDENT JONATHAN
I know these are trying times for you and your presidency. Too many bad stories are making the rounds. If people can call small me and say 'that your brother that you smuggled into the country in the night must be smuggled right back', I can imagine what you must have heard. When I heard that mischievous people are sneering that your boss was smuggled into the country like a 'piece of contraband' or 'cocaine', my eyes clouded over. How could all this be happening to a patient Goodluck? Well, I guess you must have realised that the job you are saddled with now requires more than patience and good luck.
Nigerians are in a hurry to get out of the woods. So you cannot waste time hanging around President Yar'Adua's ambulance. Whether the old man is in that ambulance or not is another distraction you must not allow. We all know President Umar Musa Yar'Adua as a man of honour and I know that you know that if he truly came out of that aircraft on his feet, not stretchered , as Senator Ibrahim Ida claimed in his BBC interview, he would be seeing you soon. So, get back to work and ignore all the noise and rumours.
This is your time to shine and prove that you have more going for you than good luck. Right now, you are the first President (never mind the prefix 'Acting') or head of government in Nigeria without a deputy, a vice president. So, you cannot complain that your deputy is running or being used to run rings around you. You have been empowered to be your own man. The 'Acting' prefix cancels the position of a deputy and that means you have enormous powers. If you can't see what I see, then something is not right.
I know some people would have told you not to take steps or do projects that will make Yar'Adua look bad. But you don't owe them. You owe us. You are the man on the threshold of destiny. They are the men on the wrong side of history. They are luxuries you can't afford.
Your Excellency, I don't know if you have watched any of Mike Bamiloye's films. There you would see how persistent demons can be. They would stay glued to your ears and try to confuse you. Their job is to beat their selfish drums and get you to dance it and their music is always so melodious to the ears. The temptation to dance is awesome. But you can resist these demons because if you don't, they will lead you to an early political grave. Once they deliver you to Golgotha, their job is done. They would return to the arena in search of the next prey.
In case you think these demons are a result of my watching too many Mount Zion Ministries films, let me remind you what they did to your boss. They went to Katsina and convinced him that he did not need to rest and look after his health after eight years as governor. They told him his doctors are quacks who didn't know jack about when to slow down. They sang a lovely track song from the Brazilian soap 'No one but you' until he started dancing. Now, who is paying the price? Who is the President who arrived his country after 90 days in the middle of the night, shepherded in with 'touch-lights', without fanfare, guard of honour? The club of demons' job is done. They are back in the arena for the next evil dance. If you follow them, you will lose weight while they become fat cats. They will disown you on national television. Dem go tell you say dem no send you message.
Sir, the decision is yours because it is your life, your political future that is at stake. And well, what have you got to lose? If you do well and surpass your predecessor, you will be glorifying the Almighty who has given you so many chances and promoted you beyond your wildest dreams. If you go through the motions and fritter away the months on nothing but fine-sounding speeches, you would have let God down for making things to fall in the right places for you. You and I read the Bible and know what God did to those who let Him down.
You can prove that you don't need 20 years to do simple things like building roads and helping Nigeria regain her stand and position in the comity of nations. You can demystify governance like Governor Fashola of Lagos. You can redefine political will. You can go down in history as the President who rescued us from darkness. You can become the let-there-be-light President. Whoever gives us nationwide 14 hours uninterrupted power supply daily will be a hero. Concentrate on what will impact on the people.
There is so much to do and if you do them, God will see you as a good investment, that you were worthy of all that He has done for you. If you perform, you would have proved that there is more to the South South of Nigeria than masked men and militancy. And who says we can't give you another four years? The Lord who has suspended all laws and constitution for you thus far is still at work, you know? After all we have learnt our lessons the hard way. We intend to look before we leap next time.
As it is, all eyes are on you. Nigerians want to know if you are worth the trouble they have been through in the last two months. This is your chance, a lifetime chance to show the whole world that you are not a coward, that you don't need a woman to defend you from the bullets from another woman.
You can stand up and make us proud or make us look like fools. You can choose to be like Chief Obafemi Awolowo whose name his great grand-children can still ride on. Twenty three years after his death, his hometown, Ikenne is still a political Mecca and his widow a hostess of South West governors and politicians of note.
Whatever you do sir, remember that this democracy, our hard-earned democracy must not die on your watch. We will not forgive you if by errors of omission or commission, Nigeria falls from your hands.
Thank you and May God grant you wisdom to steer this ship to a safe harbour. Going to Saudi…
It all started with noise about Saudi Arabia holding President Umaru Musa Yar Adua hostage. Why would anybody hold our President hostage when they were not sure we would pay the ransom? Considering the way some ministers did a 360 degree on the sick man, it would be bad business forecast to actually have thought abducting Umoru would bring any financial gains. I mean, haven't we moved on with our lives? Are the Eminent Nigerians not talking to Jonathan? And the cabal has been having sleepless nights over who becomes the Vice President.
Then we heard that Saudi authorities did not allow our ministers landing rights. But it was not enough reason to accuse those holy people of kidnapping and abduction or other such unholy acts? May be we have body odour or bad breath or they simply don't like our table manners. Has it occurred to you guys that Saudi Arabia airports belong to Saudi Arabians and they reserve all rights to determine who lands there? They did not want our plane there, period. Didn't we have one presidential jet parked on their soil since November 23, 2009?
Why should they allow us to crowd them? And they also had reasons to be suspicious of the constant visit of Nigerians to Saudi when it was not yet the season of holy pilgrimage. They must have been wondering out there in their watchtower the kind of Umrah we could be performing with six-six people every other week. And then I do not trust my brothers who had gone before the ministerial delegation. Didn't they sneak out, the Reps blokes, without the female one? Only God knows the hanky-panky they did in those few hours they spent in Saudi. Poor Saudi king might have decided to cut his losses before his streets were filled with Nigerian-looking children, if you get my drift? Yes, before we impregnate anybody or marry those fine girls who are probably already betrothed to Saudi princes. You see, my Nigerian brothers may not have as much money as Saudi princes but they can cajole an angel to part with his halo, so why should the Saudi king not protect his people from my brothers? Ah.
There were also those 'retail' trips to Saudi Arabia. As a woman and alumnus of Oshodi market, I prefer 'wholesale' arrangements. They make more economic sense. So, why didn't we do a wholesale trip to Jeddah? Everybody who wanted to see the King of Jeddah, Hajia Turai and President Yar'Adua should all have gone at the same time. We should have just chartered one British Airways jet, pay landing cost once, got group hotel booking along with a hefty discount on everything. It would have been cheaper and we'd have gotten the same results. Acting President, SGF, representatives of Reps, Senators, governors, royal fathers, religious leaders, organized private sector, unorganized private sector, NLC, ASUU, NANS, everybody, should have gone at the same time. That way, Hajia Turai would have seen us
en bloc. We would have thanked the King of Saudi in one fell swoop, prostrating and kneeling and the President's doctors would not have had to waste time telling each group to take its smelly bodies and infectious and germ-riddled breath away from their patient's ward. The insults, the welcome, the tears of betrayal we could have received at 'dozen price' and come home on our big jet and share everything. For me, that was the best thing to do. We should have used two massive jets, those ones with staircase inside. Gbam!
Now, we know better.