On Femi Adesina’s “Wailing Wailers” Comments—In Defense of Pius Adesanmi

By Festus Ogun

I do not know Prof. Pius Adesanmi personally; neither do I know Femi Adesina too. This need be stated right from onset so as to be freed from the notion of whether I’m Prof. Pius’ errand boy. Sorry, I am not. When that has been taken care of, on then can now move on into the purpose of the piece.

Anyone who doesn’t get the drift of the term ‘wailing-wailer’ can be said to be non-existing in the political world of Nigeria. It is a very popular term that features in most political commentaries. Though, maybe the term has been existing before 2015 is subject to doubt, however, stating that it all started and became popularized by President Buhari’s special adviser on media and publicity, Femi Adesina is very near to the truth. For the sake of those who doesn’t know what ‘wailing-wailer’ means, it is, put simply, the Nigerian political ‘noisemakers’ – anyone making criticism of APC/Buhari’s government.

In a Facebook post of Pius Adesanmi published recently, titled: “Still OnFavour: Fulani Herdsmen, Optics, & Other Blues”, he (Adesanmi) explains critically and logically the danger of the incessant killings by Fulani Herdsmen in the country. In a thought-provoking way, he pointed out how the Buhari government has been quiet and taking with levity this serious issue of Fulani Herdsmen. The piece, undoubtedly, is a reflection of the reality. The government have been mute and has done little or nothing about this issue. Trust Prof Pius, he didn’t just jumped into his conclusion on this, he made logical analysis and argument.

This piece was trailed with mixed reactions; it was also criticized. Those that made criticism on the piece gave explanations before their conclusion – though many were not genuine. What draw the attention of many, however, is the comment made by President Mohammadu Buhari’s special adviser on media and publicity, Femi Adesina. With no explanation or excuse on what the brilliant Professor said, Femi Adesina, carelessly, commented with: “Let the wailers wail more.”

Sorry, who is wailing? Since the prof. made justification for his post, he is no wailer. Rather, since Femi Adesina can’t give a reasonable excuse before jumping into his conclusion, he can be said to be the wailer. Wait, is Femi Adesina too lazy to read with understanding the piece? This question is asked out of the long period of confusion and doubt if any right thinking type can post such silly comment on such reasonable post.

There is need for the Adesina to make redefinition of his roles. If I’m right, I am not sure Mr. Femi Adesina knows what it takes to be in charge of media and publicity. If he does, he would not have made such useless comment on the reasonable post. And you know, the comment is just one in a million type, which Femi Adesina have been making in the past. At this juncture, there is need to draw a boundary between being brilliant and being intelligent. Brilliancy is a pure different thing from intelligence. Mr.Adesina, a veteran journalist, is believed to be brilliant and that is a reason why he got such appointment. But, to say he is intelligent is very subject to doubt. For an intelligent and right thinking person will not be making such comment on reasonable posts.

For the sake of Mr. Femi Adesina, who probably doesn’t know, someone in charge of media and publicity does not only ‘defend’ his master without any good reason(s). There is need to give explanations before making comments to the public. Infact, it is better to be quiet on issues than opening the rotten mouth to make fruitless comments – it is not needed. Even, merely looking at Adesina’s ‘Wailing-Wailer’ comment, it requires little or no imagination to detect the fact that he seems not to have any good excuse for his master’s action and has deployed ‘Wailing-Wailer’ as defense to all criticism of his master ‘government’ – it will never work, Nigerians are not fools.

The term ‘Wailing Wailer’ have been used by Adesina as a means to gag Nigerians. To speak the truth, APC is a party that detest criticism and who knows whether it is the same trait have been passed to Femi Adesina’s gene. The APC believe they are always right , whereas they are the one getting things wrong the most. The presidency, through Adesina, have been waging serious war against all forms of oppositions. They give no room for criticism – constructive or the other way round; and that is the problem we are facing here in Nigeria. When the government sees no good in public commentaries – even those that are constructive - it will be very hard for such a government to get to the promise land. Since criticism is very important of democracy, there is need for this government to give room for it.

The problem with Adesina, I think, is intellectual dishonesty, which is the peak of sycophancy. Using ‘wailing wailer’ to gag or discourage public criticism is highly nonsensical. Need it be pointed out here that not even all those critics of Buhari’s government are members of the PDP. Since the ‘term’ has been attributed to the PDP and some unrepentant loyalist of Jonathan, using the same term for all critics therefore is very wrong. It has fallen to become a fallacy of hasty generalization. Adesina needs to learn all these because, taking Prof. Pius to be a PDP man – that usually sees no good in Buhari – just because of his constructive criticism, and thereafter calling him a ‘wailer’ showcases his height of intellectual dumbness – no apology, until he changes.

The use of the term ‘wailing-wailer’ is also a pointer to the fact that Adesina is a lazy type, and you know, a lazy person does not fit the position he is occupying. He is too lazy to give reasons for his boss’ action or too lazy to keep the public updated on the take of the presidency on issues of national importance. If not for his laziness, why should ‘Wailing Wailers’ be the comment on relevant issues? Look here, being busy differs from being lazy. If he is busy, he will have no time to even make a comment, but giving us the two words as the answer to all ‘questions’ shows his laziness.

Finally, there is need to tell Femi Adesina that: even when your master sends you on an errand as a slave, such errand need be delivered as a freeborn and an‘Omoluwabi’. Look, there is need for Femi Adesina to redefine his role as the mouthpiece of government. He is getting too many things wrong. He needs to get many things right too. If not, ‘if Buhari didn’t “kill” Adesina, Adesina will certainly “kill” Buhari”.

Festus Ogun ([email protected]) is a law undergraduate, socio-political commentator and blogger. He can be interacted with directly on Twitter via @mrfestusogun

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