–Blank NEWS Online (NIGERIA) – By Austen AKHAGBEME:
When Afenifere, the yoruba cultural and political organisation signed the fatal accord with former President Obasanjo in his bid for a second term, Senator Bola Ahmed Tinubu saw ahead of them all. Which is why the PDP whirlwind that swept the South West in 2003 general elections, left Bola Tinubu unscathed as he was the only man standing.
This gives credence to the general notion of Tinubu’s widely proclaimed invincibility and political sagacity. This Lion of Bourdillon sure knows when to roar and when to devour his prey.
His brand of politics, fondly referred to as Jagabanism, has become more of a political philosophy and Ideology readily deployed to capture political power and advantages especially in its immediate catchment of western Nigeria.
Ignoring Tinubu at any political equation where he hold sway is to one’s peril. He’s deftly dangerous and can dare a monster for a fight. In the days of NADECO with a life practically lived in the trenches against General Abacha’s misrule, Bola Tinubu with a host of others shone like a million stars, tormenting the despotic regime while amplifying the repressive voice of the disenchanted.
When he picked up the gauntlet at the dawn of our nascent Democracy, he set the standard for a populist dispensation when governance is akin to the well being and Comfort of the people. Till date, that template is there for any in coming governor of Lagos state to adhere to. It has become a roadmap to performance and accountability.
Those who know him closely are often quick to equate him to or describe him as an institution and dispensation of the “Jagaban order”, where winning is the game and mentoring the hallmark.
What has become known as the “Tinubu boys” are everywhere in our political space; holding forth in their individual capacity, the jagaban ideal and loyalty.
It is on this premise that I think it is myopic for anyone to gloat, crowl or revel at the purported fall of the grandmaster himself simply because a troubled party was being arranged or rearranged to save it from a possible implosion that could have led to its extinction.
Even before now, there are those who felt that godfatherism of the type practiced by the Asiwaju, especially in Lagos state, is overwhelmingly self serving, selfish and undemocratic. Some went further to describe Lagos as a personal fiefdom, conquered or annexed by the Tinubu political dynasty.
They’re miffed by his continuous grip on the state jugular, a knee on her neck that disallowed the state to breathe at will. Others sees him as a traitor of the collective yoruba struggle, sacrificed on the altar of his first love; his 2023 Presidential ambition.The very reason why others naturally felt a dead blow has been delt to the collective politicking and in-house mudsliging which seems to favour him ,when the NWC of his party, the APC was dissolved of late.
Love him or hate him, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu has become a factor and a political force, good or bad, in this country. His mentorship, magnanimity and mustered solidarity, over the years among Nigeria politicians will continue to be his greatest advantage in times of crisis. Whether he’s a good man or not, he’s got one thing going for him- the ability to identify leadership traits, harness and project them for the possible benefit of all. Vice President Osinbajo and Former governor Fashola are a shining example in this regard. We have truly not heard the last of the Jagaban, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, yet.
- Austen AKHAGBEME:is a Columnist with Blank NEWS Online