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The Obidients, the Jagaban and the Icarus Syndrome by Femi Fani-Kayode



I admire and respect the energy and passion of the Obidients and like I said in an earlier write-up titled “Who Are These Obidients?”, I believe that they wish to effect a social and political revolution which those of us in the larger political parties have to be very wary of.

I also believe that if they stay together and don’t run out of steam and if properly harnessed and managed over the next few years they may present a formidable challenge to us somewhere down the line.

Yet the truth is that like a rough and uncut diamond they are still very far from their mark, they still have a long way to go from achieving perfection and they still have much to learn.

They are a formidable movement as I said in my earlier write up and I, unlike many others, take them seriously.

I am glad that they have ventured into the dark and murky waters of Nigerian politics and it is my prayer that they survive it and last, even if they don’t make an appreciable impact at the polls next year.

Yet if the truth be told, as at today, they are more like a loose canon than a guided missile.

Anger alone cannot fuel a revolution: there must be purpose.

And that clear purpose is something that they seem to lack and which their leader, other than just wanting to be President of a so-called New Nigeria, clearly is incapable of providing.

Worst still, hubris, which always leads to nemesis, is beginning to creep into their ranks.

They remind me of the Greek mythological figure known as Icarus who overeached himself by flying too close to the sun with his wax wings, challenging the gods and boasting that he could touch the heavens.

Needless to say the wings melted and he came down crashing.

What worries me the most for them is, given their high expectations, the rude shock and sense of despair that will engulf them and the suffering and mental trauma they will experience after they receive a crushing defeat in next years presidential election. And receive it they will.

I doubt that they will win one Senatorial district or one seat in the House of Representatives let alone a Governorship election or the Presidential election.

It is after they have tasted and suffered that defeat that their resolve will be truly tested.

It is at that time that we shall find out whether they are the men and women they claim to be or that they are mere children, venting on social media and expressing their frustrations at any and every public event.

I had argued in my earlier contribution that they have vision and potential and that what makes them so dangerous is their revolutionary zeal and ideas and their desire to establish a new cadre of Nigerian leaders and sweep away the old.

I maintain this position but one thing is clear: the old political order will not allow this to happen without a good fight.

And even if it were to ever happen it would take a good number of years and much struggle.

After 2023 comes the real test for them.

After they suffer their first defeat next year they will either loose their nerve, freak out, crack up, break ranks, fall into disssaray, whine like neophytes, sulk to heaven and back, suck their little thumbs and insult the entire world on social media or they will accept their lot, pull themselves together, establish a new and firm resolve e to fight on regardless, consolidate their ranks, organise themselves into a new and formidable force and functional political party and prepare for the next election in four years time.

Sadly I suspect they are incapable of the latter simply because their leader lacks that level of focus, strength, commitment, fortitude or gravitas and I am not sure that there is anyone else within their ranks that can rise up and harness their remarkable energy and strength.

None of their leaders have the energy, charisma and strength of Yahaya Bello, the White Lion.

None has the wisdom, patience, knowledge and firm resolve of Mai Mala Buni or the commitment to hard work and dedication to duty, excellence and enterprise of Babagana Zulum.

None has the gentle, kind, accommodating, alluring and incisive disposition of Sani Bello (Abu Lolo) or the faith, steadfastness and loyalty of Bello Matawalle.
None has the vision, courage and firepower of Nasir El-Rufai, the profound and calculating disposition and utter genius of Sani Musa (313) or the depth of knowledge and brilliance in oratory of Kashim Shettima.

None has the calm resolve and iron will of Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi (Gburugburu), the calculating, tenacious and tactical disposition of Rahman Abdul Rasaq, the zeal, confidence, enterprise, experience and byzantine cunning of Orji Uzor Kalu or the irresistible charisma and pugnacious spirit of Nyesom Wike.

None has the intellectual depth of Kayode Fayemi, the lion heart of Dapo Abiodun, the scholarly insight of Ben Ayaade or the focus, determination and creativity of David Umahi.

I look into the ranks of their leaders and all I see is weakness.

The only exception is my older brother and dear friend Doyin Okupe who, as a highly experienced old war horse and veteran politican, is capable of holding his own in any fight but who, deep down, is a die-hard conservative, a product of the ruling class and a man that can hardly be described as a revolutionary.

I will say little about my brother Datti Ahmed, Obi’s running mate, who I happen to have a soft spot for and who has done a great job in the education sector other than to say that no true progressive or revolutionary would ever publicly proclaim that homosexuals and lesbians should “be killed” simply for being different.

And even if they believed that should be the case, fewer would have the temerity and sheer indiscretion to blurt it out on the floor of the Nigerian Senate for the entire world to see and hear.

Is that what the Obidients have in store for us? A world that is so intolerant of those that do not conform with their thoughts, vision, views, way of life, values and sexual preferences?

Are they really prepared to kill those that do not share their views or that are gays and lesbians?

I hope not because that would be heartless, fascistic, unjust, ungodly and simply barbaric and that is not the Datti Ahmed that I know and respect.

Yet say it he did and I repeat, all I see in the ranks of their leaders is weakness. I do not see any strength. I do not see any fire. I do not see any strong resolve. I do not see any passion or zeal and I do not see any fortitude to see the fight through to the end, no matter the cost.

Simply put they have no Achilles of the Mermidans in their battle ranks, no Hector of Troy, no Sir Arthur Dayne (the Sword of the Morning) and no Khaleed Ibn Waheed (the Sword of God).

They have no Aragorn of Gondor on their front line, no Alexander the Great, no Salahudeen Ayubi, no Ragnar Lothbrook, no Uthred of Bebbanberg and no William Wallace of the Mcregor’s.

They have no Robert the Bruce in their formations, no Bonny Prince Charlie, no Khaleesi, Mother of Dragons, no Beowulf son of Ecgtheow and no Daemon Targaryan, Prince of the Seven Kingdoms.

They have no Kahl Drogo of the Dothraki in their forces, no Jehu son of Nimshi, no Maximus Meridius of Rome, no David son of Jesse, no Grey Worm of the Unsullied, no Legolas of the Elves and no John Snow of the Targaryan’s.

They have no Gideon son of Joash in their vanguard, no Abner son of Ner, no Jeptha son of Gilead, no Eleazar son of Dodo, no Shammah son of Agee and
no Ishbaal the Tachmonite.


They have no Joab, Abishai and Asahel sons of Zeruel and strong men of David in their assault team.

Without a strong and courageous leader who is prepared to loose everything including his or her liberty or life, their revolution and bid for power will amount to nothing.

Consequently I believe that we may hear little about them after 2023.

They will simply vanish and be gone with the wind. The combined forces of APC and PDP will overwhelm them and blow them away.

When the fight starts they will run for cover and leave the field and boxing ring for the big boys to slug it out.

They will be nowhere to be found and as the noose gets tighter and tighter, they will get weaker and weaker until they slowly disappear and melt away like an iceberg approaching the tropics.

I pray I am wrong but this is my suspicion given the fact that, according to unconfirmed reports, Obi is already negotiating a deal with the PDP and looking to form an alliance with them in order to acquire himself a soft landing in the unlikely event of them winning.

So much for his commitment to his young fanatical supporters and loyalty to his new party.

The truth is that he is simply using them both and whichever way, even if he gets back into bed with Atiku Abubakar and the PDP in some kind of overt or covert alliance, the APC and our presidential candidate Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, the Jagaban Borgu, will thrash them all like the winter wheat.

Atiku particularly cannot possibly see, fathom or comprehend what is coming.

He will be served a crushing blow and a humiliating defeat and he will be utterly devastated.

He will be subjected to what the American military forces that invaded Iraq in 2003 under the command of General Tommy Franks famously described as “shock and awe”.

He will be subjected to what the German Army referred to as “blitzkrieg” during World War II.

He will be utterly routed, roundly defeated, thoroughly demystified and ingloriously evicted out of the political space and from his olympian heights in precisely the same way that Lucifer, Son of the Dawn, was overpowered, overwhelmed and thrown out of Heaven.

After that he will retire from politics permanently and go back to Dubai from whence he came.

And that is precisely what he deserves. This is the same Atiku who in 2014 happily proclaimed that “PDP is dead” and that “this country is moving in the wrong direction because of PDP”.

In that same year he left the party with the then Speaker of the House, five Governors and a number of Senators, House members, former Governors, former Ministers and other notable party leaders on the grounds that it was time for a Northerner to be the flagbearer of the party.

He, Senator Bukola Saraki, Speaker of the House of Representatives Aminu Tambuwal, Governor Rabiu Kwankwaso, Governor Abdul Fatah Ahmed and a number of others turned their backs on President Goodluck Jonathan and destroyed their own party’s chances at the polls in 2015 by leaving it a year earlier and joining the then opposition APC.

Now, 7 years later, they are shamelessly back in the same PDP that they collectively demonised and murdered and they would want us to believe that it has suddenly resurrected and is alive again.

Thankfully God has given us the opportunity to prove to them by next year that the PDP is still as dead as a dodo and during the course of the election we shall finally bury it before the entire world.

It is just a question of time.

Yet aside from all this what I find the most irritating and objectionable about the Obidients is not their unadulterated aggression and abusive tendencies but rather their insistence on comparing their leader Peter Obi to Tinubu.

I consider this to be deeply insulting.

It is like comparing Don Perignon to ogogoro.

It is like comparing Cristal champagne to what the people of the Niger Delta call ‘sepe’.

It is like comparing the finest red wine from the vineyards of Bordeaux to what the Ghanaians call ‘akpeteshie’.


It is like comparing chalk and cheese.

It is like comparing a Rolls Royce to a Volkswagon Beetle, a Porsche Carrera to a three-wheeled scooter, a Ferrari to a broken down mini or a Gulf Stream jet to an Aba-made helicopter.

When Obi was still in kindergarten Bola Ahmed Tinubu was already a very wealthy and successful business man who had worked and invested massively in the oil, gas, hi-tech and communications sector.

At that time he was already a dollar millionaire and he invested much of his wealth into politics and the lives of others that were less fortunate than he was.

When Obi was still in secondary school Bola Ahmed Tinubu was already an integral part of the massive political network and a key figure in the late Major General Shehu Musa Yar’adua’s formidable political family which was known as the People’s Front (PF) together with other notable and seasoned leaders like Babagana Kingibe and Atiku Abubakar.

They were of course to later join the SDP as a group and they, more than any other, ensured the emergence of Chief MKO Abiola as the presidential flagbearer of that party at their Jos Convention in 1993.

When Obi was still at University Bola Ahmed Tinubu was in the trenches, fighting military Governments, leading NADECO and risking his life and liberty for the restoration of MKO Abiola’s June 12th mandate, which had been annuled by the military, and for democracy.

Many of today’s Obidients were not born at that time but they should go and ask their parents or grandparents about what happened and the role that Bola Tinubu played.

Those of us that were around and very vocal and active at the time can testify to his efforts and we were amongst those that were then described as NADECO footsoldiers.

Bola Tinubu inspired us and millions of other Nigerians and democrats all over the world with his courage and efforts and he encouraged us to keep up the struggle and rise up for June 12th. And we did!

Many of our people were killed, incarcerated and driven into exile (including yours truly) and had it not been for the leadership of the following heroes we would still be under the yoke of military rule today.

I will make this a full and comprehensive list for the benefit of those young Obidients who have no knowledge of our nation’s history and who know nothing about the June 12th struggle.

They include Moshood Kashimawo Olawale Abiola, Wole Soyinka, Anthony Enahoro, Alani Akinrinade, Kudirat Abiola, Kunle Ajasin, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, Lam Adesina, Frederick Fasheun, Bola Ige, Ayo Adebanjo, Abraham Adesanya and Gani Fawenhimi.

They also include Beko Ransome Kuti, Alao Aka Bashorun, Omo Omoruyi, Balarabe Musa, Kayode Fayemi, Tokunboh Afikuyomi, Pascal Bafyau, Olu Omotehinwa and Kunle Ajibade.

They also include, Adesegun Banjo, Festus Iyayi, Bisi Akande, Bisi Durojaiye, Abubakar ‘Dangiwa’ Umar, Alfred Rewane, Babatunde Edu, Suliat Adedeji, Bolanle Gbonigi, Kola Animashaun, Sam Omatseye, Pius O. Akinyeleru and Gbolabo Ogunsanwo.

They also include Adebayo Williams, Nosa Igiebor, Dare Babarinsa, Segun Osoba, Olu Falae, Akin Osuntokun, Reuben Abati, Dele Momodu, Dan Suleiman, Bagudu Kaltho, Rauf Aregbesola, Dele Alake, Augustine Sam, Seye Kehinde, Tunde Elegbede and Odia Ofeimun.

They also include Olisa Agbakoba, Ayo Obe, Amos Akingba, Ndubuisi Kanu, Patrick Koshoni, Bayo Onanuga, Femi Ojudu, Ralph Obioha, Oluwatoyin Onaguruwa, Kola Ilori, Onome Osifo-Whiskey and Bobo Nwosisi.

They also include Wale Okuniyi, Frank Kokori, Tony Nyiam, Femi Falana, Shehu Sani, Tony Uranta, Ogaga Ifowodo, Chima Ubani, Fred Agbeyegbe, Soji Omotunde and Chris Anyanwu.

And finally they include Mohammed Adamu, Shola Omatsola, Bisoye Tejuosho, Olusegun Adeniyi, George Mbah, Ben Charles Obi and so many others.

Many of these names will be strange or unknown to the young Obidients and probably to their leader Peter Obi as well.

And that is why I decided to mention each and everyone of them.

I suggest they read up on them and find out the role each of these great and selfless individuals played in securing the democracy and free speech that they are enjoying today.

They, together with the Nigerian people, were the ones that drove the military out of power and consequently, after seven years of murderous violence, subjugation, tyranny, tribulation and a hard struggle against the military, democracy was restored to our country in 1999 with the pardon, release from prison and election of President Olusegun Obasanjo.

Some of those on the list were martyred and many were locked up and suffered badly whilst others were driven into a lonely and oftentimes challenging and depressing exile.

Bola Ahmed Tinubu was not just amongst them but he was one of those that led them, inspired them and fuelled and financed the resistance.

He was charged with treason, detained, his home was bombed and he was terrorised, traumatised and persecuted till the time that he, his wife, Oluremi Tinubu (who is a ranking member of the Nigerian Senate today) and children were smuggled out of the country into a long and harrowing exile.

Outside of that and before the struggle even began
Tinubu had been elected as a Senator during the 3rd Republic in 1992 on the platform of the SDP, recording the highest number of votes for a Senate seat in the entire country!

Whilst at the Senate he excelled and was appointed Chairman of the Senate Commitee on Banking and Finance.

This was just short of a decade before he became Governor of Lagos state in 1999 after the murder of MKO Abiola and the then Head of State, Gen. Sani Abacha, after returning home from exile and after the military were driven away and pushed out of office.

From 1990 up until today Tinubu has been an active and key player in the political firmament of Nigeria and he has always fought against injustice and tyranny.

Whilst Obi was still a trader selling tomatoe ketchup and Bournvita in 1999 Bola Ahmed Tinubu had already paid his dues, made his mark and was already running for the Governorship of Lagos state.

The elders of the South West and Afenifere supported him and rewarded him by ensuring that he won simply because of the noble and dramatic role he played during the June 12th struggle and his role in ensuring that the military left power.

From 1999 till 2007 he stood firm against a hostile Federal Governmrnt led by President Olusegun Obasanjo (which I proudly served) and not only did he survive it but he went on to ensure that his boys were elected as Governor of that state in every subsequent election for the next 15 years and up until today.

Over that period of time he also ensured that his boys were elected Governor of virtually all the South West states, Vice President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (Yemi Osinbajo), Speaker of the House of Representatives (Femi Gbajabiamila) and so much more.

Others were appointed as prominent and powerful Traditional Rulers all over the South West and have ascended to the throne of their reverred and distinguished ancestors.

Finally others were given Ministerial appointments from 2015 to date in President Muhammadu Buhari’s Government such as Lai Mohammed, Babatunde Raji Fashola and Sunday Dare who were once his loyal aides and who served him for many years whilst others, who were his political associates and trusted friends like Boss Mustapha and Babachir Lawal, were appointed as Secretary to the Federal Government respectively.

He also cultivated and groomed a small group of utterly brilliant professionals and technocrats, including bankers, lawyers, economists, businessmen and other leading members of the private sector like Wale Edun, Yemi Cardoso, Folarin Coker, Babatunde Fowler and James Faleke into the political arena where they shone and continue to shine like the bright stars that they are.

I was in the then ruling PDP in 2015 and during the campaign for the presidential election I played a key role for President Goodluck Jonathan and led the media campaign and charge against President Buhari’s election bid.

It was a tough fight and a very hard, vicious, aggressive and oftentimes dirty campaign and both sides gave as good as they got.

I can tell you that had it not been for the unequivocal support that Bola Ahmed Tinubu and his faction of the APC gave President Buhari at the time, he would NEVER have won that election.

The same thing happened again in 2019 though by that rime the campaign was far less colourful, less eventful, less contentious, less dramatic and less aggressive and, though still in PDP, I was not in any way involved in Atiku Abubakar’s election bid or campaign organisation.

Yet once again Tinubu and his machinery ensured that Buhari won.

There is no APC Governor in the South West today that can say he got there without the tacit support and approval of Bola Ahmed Tinubu.

He is father to all of them and he has also extended his support base to the entire country with his boys, followers and political associates everywhere, including the core North, the Middle Belt, the South South and the South East.

A final point on the June 12th struggle and Tinubu’s contribution to democracy and the peace and unity of Nigeria.

June 12th brought our nation closer to the brink of a second civil war than any other political event in the course of our history. It literally tore us apart. Yet thankfully 29 years later the wounds have finally healed and our nation has moved on.

I submit that Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu was the architect of that healing process and was the key reason why the matter was finally brought to closure and what the Holy Bible describes as an “expected end” and I shall explain how and why.

Perhaps the greatest testimony that we can cite as an example of his sense of patriotism is the fact that long after the passing of Chief MKO Abiola and even in the midst of the rise of a mainly new, naive, skeptical, unbelieving, antagonistic and historically-ignorant generation of Gen-Z and Millenial youths who know absolutely nothing about the sacrifices made for the restoration of democracy during June 12th, he kept faith with the memory and the heroes of that struggle.

He achieved this by ensuring that MKO Abiola was not only recognised but also honored by the Buhari administration who not only named June 12th as our Democracy Day but also named the National Stadium in Abuja after MKO and formally recognised him and his erstwhile running mate, Ambassador Babagana Kingibe, as a former President and Vice President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria respectively.

With these laudable actions they finally set aside all doubt and acknowledged the fact that, though these two great men were never sworn in, they actually won the June 12th 1993 presidential election: a fact that a handful of key players in the political space had disputed for many years and a course of action that a number of post-1999 democratically-elected Presidents and Governments had inexplicably and wickedly refused to do.

This singular act by the Buhari administration has finally killed the ghost of June 12th, brought about national reconciliation and cemented the unity and future of Nigeria more than any other.

It has also brought to an end the deep suspicion that had hitherto existed between the people of the South West and the North.

Commendation for all this must go to primarily two people.

Firstly President Muhammadu Buhari who displayed remarkable courage and sensitivity by taking this monumental step and noble course of action and secondly Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu who lobbied morning day and night to ensure that he did it.

For this alone and so much more Bola Tinubu deserves to be elected President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria in next years election.

Can any of these things be said of Peter Obi?


Of course not: unless you are deluded!

There are many former Governors, former Presidents, former Vice Presidents and former Ministers in this country whose names barely get a mention anymore in the public space but Tinubu is and has always been a constant factor for the last 32 years!

All this and much more and some have the sheer effontry to be comparing one Peter Obi who was Governor of Anambra state just a few years ago to the mighty Jagaban.

This is a big insult and frankly reflects nothing other than the ignorance of those making the comparison.

Take it or leave it, that is the bitter truth.

To compare a strong-willed, resilient, industrious, tried and tested, exposed, gifted, blessed, wily, wise, enigmatic, courageous, intelligent and great man like Bola Ahmed Tinubu who God has used to better the lives of millions and who transformed our very own Lagos from a chaotic, ugly, dirty, congested, over-populated, poor, crime-ridden, depressing, ghetto-filled city and festering slum with a dwindling economy, a tiny income and a negligible and pitiful IGR of 700 million naira per month in 1999 to the most modern, sophisticated, cosmopolitan, secure, orderly, powerful, dynamic, clean, beautiful, inspiring, prestigious, booming, business-friendly, commercially-gratifying, inspiring, happy, modern and prosperous city and industrial hub on the African continent with by far the largest population, an IGR of 44.5 billion naira per month, a massive income and the largest economy compared to any other CITY in Africa, the 3rd largest economy compared to any NATION in Africa (with a GDP of $76 billion) and a larger economy than over 95% of NATIONS on the African continent all as a consequence of his efforts and that of his political sons that succeeded him as Governor and established a joint and combined legacy of excellence with him over the last 23 years to a man who is so far down the ladder like Peter Obi is uncharitable.

This is the same Obi who, as Governor of his Anambra state just a few years ago, did NOTHING in terms of infrastructural development, was incapable of building up the state’s IGR, spent all his time fighting the workers and unions and oppressing his perceived enemies and instead of providing good governance and hope for his people, was busy persecuting non-indigenes and particularly Northerners and throwing them out of his state.

This is the same Obi who, as Governor of Anambra state, instead of providing inspirational leadership for his people was busy fighting the world and claiming that Lagos was no longer part of the West but now a “no-man’s land” and that took pleasure in stoking the embers of tribalism, religious intolerance, sectarian conflict and ethnic nationalism.

This is the same Obi who, as Governor of Anambra state, instead of doing something tangible and bringing the dividends of democracy to his people was, as Dele Alake the former Commissioner of Information of Lagos state rightly said, was too busy “saving money” whilst his people were dying of hunger and starvation.

Again this is a man who, as Governor of Anambra state, boldly and publicly proclaimed that “education is not for the poor” and not only increased the school fees of students to an exorbitant and unattainable figure but also wickedly insisted that they must pay their fees for three terms in advance as opposed to one, causing many students to drop out of school and forfeit their dream of getting a good education.

Again this is a man who is essentially a commodities broker and trader that imports virtually everything from toilet paper, tomatoe puree and toothpaste to biscuits, soap and Bournvita into our country and who has done nothing to support or encourage our local industries, local industrial growth or agricultural production.

This prompted a prominent social media public commentator by the name of Ayekooto Akindele to say that “Peter Obi IMPORTS into the country what Aliko Dangote PRODUCES in the country”.

Ayekooto is right.

And the implications of the activities of international traders and commodity merchants like Obi on our economy and the value of our currency and their contribution to the high unemployment rate in our country as a consequence of their line of work and desire to make a quick buck at the expense of our local farmers and producers are legion.

People like Obi are assisting foreign farmers and industrialists to make vast sums of money at the expense of their Nigerian counterparts by providing a vast market for them to dump their luxury items and consumner products at usually unreasonable and extortionate prices and killing local production of similar goods because our farmers and producers simply cannot compete with them.

Worse still they have done nothing to open any of the lucrative foreign markets to the few products that our farmers and industrialists can actually produce.

The direct consequence of this is poverty for the Nigerian farmer and producer and prosperity for the foreign ones and their agents and middle men like Obi.

This is unfair, unacceptable and unconciable.

And making the bulk of your money from such a nebulous and iniquitous endeavour regardless of the damaging effect and negative impact it has on your country’s economy, farmers and producers raises a lot of questions about your sense of patriotism.

That is the problem with the Obi’s of this world.

Comparing such a man to an enigma like Tinubu who has made massive investments in different sectors of our economy and who is the employer of hundreds of thousands of our people in various local enterprises and industries is absurd.

It is like comparing a gold-plated treasure chest filled with the world’s finest and largest emralds, topaz’s and diamonds to a worthless plastic bucket filled with sand, pebbles and a sprinkling of fools gold.

It is like comparing Miss Universe or Miss World to an ugly, shifty, smelly, well-worne and well-used Mumbai lady of easy virtue.

It is like comparing Elon Musk and Bill Gates to Hushpuppi and Al Capone.

It is like comparing a beautiful blue-blooded Turkish Sultana or Hatun with a fading, ageing, crude and vulgar 18th century Parisian streetwalker.

It is a shameful and shameless comparison.

It is a tactless, tasteless and nauseating joke.

It is a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing!

It is an exercise in futility and a pointless and profit less endeavour.

Permit me to end this contribution with the following assertions.

Let the foundations of the earth rumble, let the demons scream, let the lions roar, let the wolves howl and let the sharks run riot.

Let the wailers wail, let the bulls of Bashan charge, let the mortals plot and plan, let the orcs shriek, let the goblins grumble and let our adversaries and oppressors “cry havoc and let slip the dogs of war”.

Let the forces of hell gather, let the creatures of darkness hiss and writhe, let the spoilers bellow and spoil, let the haters hate, let the liars lie and let the accusers accuse.

Let the hordes of hell, the wizards, the sorcerers, the witches, the voodoo-merchants, the witch-doctors, the spiritualists, the sharmans, the occultists, the deceivers and the agents of satan invoke their powers, chant their chants, spin their deceitful and ugly tales, cast their spells and do their worst.

it changes nothing and their counsel shall NOT stand because the Lord, whose name is MIGHTY and FAITHFUL, is with us!

Come rain, come shine, by His grace and the will of the Nigerian people, we shall prevail in next year’s presidential election, Bola Ahmed Tinubu will win and on his mandate WE SHALL STAND!

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Voice of Emancipation: How to Achieve Yoruba Sovereignty (Pt. 3)




By Kayode Emola

Many people would have us believe that achieving Yoruba sovereignty is a gargantuan task, yet the reality is that it should not be as difficult as they make it appear. In part one of this series, I outlined how we first got into this mess, through the combination of unfavourable trade alliances and the sheer determination of the Europeans to colonise our lands for their personal gains.

Just as we are in this mess through the colonial powers’ determination, we ourselves must be doubly determined to remove ourselves from it. This is not an abstract idea that we can notionally support without any concrete action. Rather, we must be actively striving for our freedom, determining metrics by which we can measure our successes. Without such measurement, how can we ascertain whether we are truly making progress or, instead, retrogressing?

This is the time to do a roll call of people who are genuinely serious about Yoruba independence. The fight for self-determination must demonstrate an irrefutable desire for our own independent country outside of Nigeria, and to do that we need to put concrete measures in place. This is not about holding endless zoom meetings that lead nowhere, but rather ensuring that these meetings are backed by action, with direction and clear plans for how and when we get to our destination.

We in the self-determination struggle must have a clear understanding of where we are and where we are going. I hear too many arguments about which direction we should be traversing and how to circumnavigate the rough terrain of Yoruba independence. The truth is that those who are for one route or an opposite route are mistaken. We must be opened minded about our direction and all the options must be on the table and prepared for.

Take for instance, some people will say we want diplomatic route, and some people will say we want to get Yoruba nation forcefully. There is no such thing as diplomatic route or military route as those expressions are just gimmicks and grammars to keep us in check. There is only one route and that is the determination of our hearts and minds to liberate our country. Every other fantastic word being used is just an illusion of the mind.

Therefore, to begin our journey all we need do from the beginning is to plan how to get to our destination including self-defence. During the planning phase, this will highlight how long or short we realistically believe that the journey will take. The planners should be able to put a time limit which should be limited, not more than 2 – 5 years that Yoruba independence must be achieved and put measures in place on how it can be achieved, which I believe its realistic including whipping up sentiments among our people back home.

Once the planning on how the journey is to be executed which should be done by only a selected few, this information can be trickled down to the masses in the form of implementation. The planning should include how funds can be generated both from individuals who truly believe in the cause and from organisations or sympathetic governments around the world that are willing to listen to our plights.

Take for instance, when Israel was attacked on 7 October this year, Israel was determined to free the last citizen taken as hostage by HAMAS. This was an uncompromising position Israel set out for itself from the onset not mincing words or trying to compromise. Israel was determined to free their citizens and declared war against HAMAS and today we can see that they are winning the war and hostages are being released.

Thanks to the Israeli government resilience and determination, the freed hostages are being reunited with their families. That is the type of determination those at the forefront of the Yoruba must have if we are to make any headway on our journey.

Once those at the forefront are resolute and determined, then we need to take a roll call of those who truly believe in the freedom of Yoruba. By this, I don’t mean people who would just turn up for zoom meetings. I mean all the ordinary man on the street who are suffering from the hardship Nigeria has meted out to everyone and is determined to leave Nigeria to embrace their Yoruba identity.

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Journey into SELF: Your Mind, a Weapon, Your Brain, a Powerful Machine!




By Tolulope A. Adegoke

“The ultimate goal of every exploration is to discover something or unravel mysteries, and maximize those things in order to conquer: fears, flaws and limitations; thereby advancing one’s self for the benefit of those around us, especially our nations and generation(s). Your mind is a weapon; your brain is a powerful machine that aids in the explorations of the ‘empires’ that lie within the cores of your being for exploits beyond measures, such that it is on the basis of how far your inner eyes can see, so you are bound to become whatever, whenever and however your goodly and Godly heart desires are. The alignment of the Spirit, Soul and Body are channels for the openings of portals within and beyond realms. They are gifts for accessing from God that which makes us to be “Made Above Nature” for fellowships, also custodians of the deep things of God, wired as carriers of His essences and presence on this earthly plain, primarily for His glory!” – Tolulope A. Adegoke

By the activation of the process of what is termed to be self –exploration, the prodigal son in the Book of Life came back to his senses and went back home. He came to himself and arrived at the juncture of self-realization by a process – the process of self- exploration.

How far a man conquers the world is a function of how well he conquers himself; hence, the greatest journey, the most prestigious journey, the most rewarding journey any man would ever embark on is the journey of self-exploration. The ultimate goal of every exploration is to discover something(s) or unravel mysteries, and maximize those things to conquer: fears, flaws and limitations; thereby advancing one’s self for the benefits of those around us, especially our generation(s).

A man will be stuck in ‘yesterday’ no matter how well read he is or how well he has explored the world around him, if he neglects to travel through himself; that is, to explore the industries that lies with him. Empowerment for change of levels or development does not come from travelling round the world; it comes from travelling through one’s self. Africa as a continent and government of its nations, for example, craves to attract Africans in diaspora to come back home to make Africa better is an unnecessary move. Africans that will develop Africa are not those that have travelled round the world, they are simply those that have ‘travelled into the industries that lies within their earthen vessels’. The prodigal son is a testimony of this fact; despite how well-travelled he was, he still fell from grace to grass, from a Hero to zero, but he got connected to a program of restoration when he embarked on the journey of self-exploration.

Self-exploration is the art and act of outgrowing childish dependences on individuals, as an individual, a people, a nation or continent, in acknowledging and celebration of the cultural values of developing and assigning one’s natural or innate potentials or gifts to the benefits of others.  If you cannot lean on your inner grace (as given by God), you will end up becoming an unnecessary burden unto those around you. Treasures lies within everyone. To be honest, self-explorers out-grow and outshine childish nature of dependence on others. They do not just sit down and wait for others to make things work for them or better; rather, such category of people gets up and work-out things for the better by accepting responsibility for the well-being of peoples, or corporates or nations without any need of compulsion.

 Self-explorers meet needs, they do not waste time thinking of who to call on to help them meet their needs when in need. Therefore, such a man or woman waits on him or herself, because he believes in what the Creator, God Almighty has embedded in him or her, which are consciously and continuously worked upon to become better and more useful to God, society at large and not only to himself! We should be observant enough to know with empirical evidences that major life’s activities are usually done or carried out in seclusion. In quietness lies the truth. My daily mantra goes thus: ‘calm, quiet, available and useful is my soul before God Almighty, My Maker!’ For example, real banking transactions are carried out in the strong room and an organization’s behaviour is cultivated and strengthened and accounted for in a secluded company boardroom. Also, medical operations are usually carried out in secluded places known as the hospital-theatres. So, self-exploration is carried out in the empires of the mind!

 Self-exploration involves securing personal independence for self-realization and self-productivity, which requires a secluded or serene atmosphere and the culture of practiced silence. Because, in silence lies the truth! A man that does not engage in silence is bound to perform below his potentials! The prodigal son as a powerful case study here was launched to self-realization and fulfilment of his potentials simply by engaging in silence; listen to the account from the Book of Life: (Luke15:15-16)

15“And he went and joined himself to a citizen of that country; And he sent him into his fields to feed swine, 16And he would fain have filled is belly with the husks that swine did eat; and no man gave unto him.”

The prodigal son celebrated this truth: “…he sent him into his fields to feed swine.”

17“And when he came to himself, he said how many hired servants of my father have bread enough to spare, and I perish with hunger. I will arise and go to my father, and I will say unto him…am no more worthy to be called thy son: make me as one of thy hired servants.”

As we can see, the prodigal son became alone with pigs, he was disconnected from men, such that he had nobody to come to his aid or depend on. He became alone, disconnected himself from clubbing, from hanging out with sluts and macho guys. He indeed disconnected himself from distractions (the noises), so as to gain attention to the call of destiny!

 Even, Albert Einstein, one of the greatest scientists ever lived was bearing witness with the prodigal son’s engagement to silence, when he revealed that:

“I am truly a ‘lone-traveller’ and never belonged to my country, my home, my friends, or even my immediate family with my whole heart. In face of all these ties, I have never lost a sense of distance and a need for solitude, feeling that increase with the year.”

What the above simply means is to practically engage in silence beyond locking yourself in a room, disconnected from all manner of human and mechanical noise. It simply means disengaging your mind from all manner of desires, lust, pursuits, values and associations that are not loyal, subject or beneficial to the discovery, development and deployment of your God given or innate potentials.

“In quietness and in confidence shall be your strength.” Says the Holy Book of Life!

The Hero called Michael Jordan, the man whom God had in mind in blessing and entertaining mankind with the basketball skills. The game of basketball would have become boring without the legendary exploits of this rare gem. With a divine sense of understanding, there are reasons beyond the visible that made Michael Jordan such a timeless star, which has helped to inspire a lot of individuals across the world and lured many of us study several respective versions of his biographies.

It has been discovered that Michael Jordan’s winning edge is his mastery of the ageless art of silence. He once wrote this powerful piece online:

“When I am out there, no one can bother me. Being out there is one of the most private parts of my life…during the game; for a few times in my life, I feel untouchable…I mean that about a game being like meditation period for me. Anytime I am playing serious basketball, it’s like meditation.

Sometimes even in the middle of the game, I am able to think about things as loud as it is; it’s almost a quiet time for me. I know that basketball game can be very exciting, but for me the game is one of the calmest parts of my life.”

Michael Jordan’s winning edge no doubt is his discipline to play the game on the platter of silence, by being united- spirit, soul and body-with the game of basketball; not minding external applauds or distracting forces which surrounded him- the process with such force that would break any unfocused man. By this, he is able to initiate and maximize communication and application with the unusual and inherent basketball energy he is endowed with.

Silence is the strong force that connects the physical into the spiritual, if properly harnessed to yielding the manifestations of possibilities. Silence, therefore, is the art of being immune to distracting-external forces in order for one to initiate or propel or maximize communication with inherent and invisible resources endowed in man by God. But the art of silence has been neglected by vast majority of mankind; yet it is as important as the art of prayer. Surprisingly, those that are master of the art of ‘prayer’ without mastering the art of ‘silence’ make little or no contribution to human existence. But, those that master the art of ‘silence’ enjoy the grace to maximize, expand, explore, exploit and contribute meaningfully to the advancement of humanity!

Attesting to the reality of this fact, Bishop David O. Oyedepo revealed in his book titled: “Maximizing your Destiny” that:

“Quietness enhances the quality of thinking. Quietness enhances productive reasoning. I cherish quietness and I will do anything to have it…that is why although we have many rooms in our house. I sometimes have to put certain guest in the hotel, to avoid the noise they will make in my home. Quietness is precious to me. It has great spiritual value…”

A prolific and industrious writer, Samson Adah Paul wrote this mind blowing piece that reminds me of the Divine creation techniques:

“When God Almighty saw the need to create woman for man, he did not inspire man to employ the ‘art of prayer’, he simply inspired man to connect to the art of silence…”

“And the Lord God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam, and he slept; and He took one of his ribs…and the rib which God had taken from man, made He woman.” [Genesis2:21]

Silence informs! It is the factory house of progress and development. Any quest for progress and development that is pursued without the art of silence will ever be in vain. Samson Adah Paul writes again: “Africans that will experience the fulfilment of the ‘African Dream’ will have to be masters of the art of silence. Mind you, silence in this context is not about being mute and dumb, it’s rather about being immune to distracting external-forces in order for one to initiate and maximize communication with the inherent resources endowed in man by God.”

Some sensitive aspects of Thomas Edison’s life have been a great lesson and positive example to me as a person after series of comprehensive study about him. I discovered too that his greatest strength was his mastery over the art of ‘silence’. His life showed impeccable discoveries and exploits, but were all as a result of paying attention to necessary matters; it is much more a function of withdrawing attention or refraining from unnecessary matters. He refused to submit to his medical science advancement for the treatment of 100% deafness which he suffered from birth on one ear and 80% deafness on his other ear. Edison rather preferred to bear the burden of deafness, for him to become better; because to him, that was an advantage. He wrote this mind-blowing piece:

“Even though I am nearly deaf, I seem to be gifted with a kind of inner hearing which enables me to detect sounds and noises that the ordinary person does not hear.” Edison did not consider hearing disability as pain but as gain which helped to strengthen his concentration levels in the areas of discoveries and impeccable inventions, thereby serving as a plus to humanity, rather than living on the guise of excuses! This, I call the Journeys of Our Beings to ‘Being’ whatever our hearts desires, whenever and however! It is a journey less travelled by a majority across the world, but mostly practised by the ‘One Percent’ of the ‘One Percent’ (Geniuses)!

Dr. Tolulope A. Adegoke is an accredited ISO 20700 Effective Leadership Management Trainer. 


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The Oracle: CSOs and the Media in Promoting Democracy and Good Governance in Nigeria (Pt. 4)




By Mike Ozekhome


In the last part of this intervention, we dealt with the following sub-topics: Good governance differs from country to country; Major good governance indicators and Good governance needs strong followership (having commenced same). In this part, we shall further explore the following themes: Good governance needs strong followership; Some CSOs in Nigeria; Typologies of Nigerian CSOs; Questions raised by CSOs; Proliferation and Roles of CSOs; NGOs and the role of CSOs. Please read on.

Good Governance Needs Strong Followership
(Civil Society Organizations) (continues)

Members of the political community should see good governance as a collective effort where they must play their part. Citizens can set up Non-governmental organizations to address or assist government in tackling some perceived problems of the polity. Civil societies like religious organizations, organized labour, academic unions, student organizations, should be strengthened and help in defending the autonomy of private interest. The civil society and Non-governmental organizations, community based organizations, market associations, professional associations should be able to collaborate and mobilize the citizens to stand against democratic abuses, obnoxious laws and policies; roguery in position of power, election rigging etc. The end will be massive withdrawal of support in the form of mass action, strikes, demonstration etc until government purges itself of toga of enslavement and maltreatment of the people.

In the same vein, it follows that any government that cannot command followership of its citizen is already heading to the precipice. If it degenerate to level of exceeding its powers, and becomes purposeless and infringes on natural rights of the people, it should be dissolved because the essence of instating governance has been defeated. Choosing credible leaders is the greatest duty followers must perform. It is incumbent on them to elect and enthrone their leader. They should not tolerate poor leadership. They should asses their leaders based on veritable values of honesty, integrity, accountability, probity etc. The people should not mortgage their conscience by taking bribe from the leader before they elect them. They must note that any leader who wants to buy the people is evil and will eventually shortchange them. The people should elicit nothing short of sound accountable leadership”. Good governance posits also that there must be absence of corruption so as to preserve the integrity of democracy. The absence of bribery, graft and corrupt in general spurs growth, development and foreign investment.


Acronyms and Abbreviations
ASUU – Academic Staff Union of Universities
CAN – Christian Association of Nigeria
CBO – Community based Organization
CLO – Civil Liberties Organization
CSO – Civil Society Organization
DG – Democracy and Governance
CEDPA – Centre for Development and Population Activities
ENABLE – Creating an Enabling Environment for Women’s Effective Participation.
FOIACT – Freedom of Information Act
FOMWAN – Federation of Muslim Woman’s Association of Nigeria
ILO – International Labour Organization
INEC – Independent National Electoral Commission
LAW GROUP – International Human Rights Law Group
MAN – Manufactures Association of Nigeria
NACCIMA – National Association of Chambers of Commerce,
Industry Mines and Agriculture.
NCWS – National Council of Women’s Societies
NLC – Nigerian Labour Congress
NGO – Non-Government Organization
NSCIA – Nigerian Supreme Council of Islamic Affairs
PACE – Partnership for Advocacy and Civil Empowerment
PROSPECT – Promoting Stakeholder Participation in Economic Transition
TMG – Transition Monitoring Group
UDD – Universal Defenders of Democracy


1. Professional Associations
2. Labour and Trade Unions
3. Philanthropic Organizations
4. Religious or Faith-based Organizations
5. Development NGOs
• Service Delivery Organizations
• Research, Resource/Support Centres
6. Foundations
7. Ethnic Militias/Vanguards
8. Networks:
• Umbrellas
• Issue-driven Networks Health, Education
• Regional Networks
• Woman’s Networks
9. Private Sector
10. Community-Based Organizations (CBOs)
• Community Development Associations (CDAs)
• Town Unions
• Religious Association
• Neighborhood Associations and Vigilance Groups
• Social Clubs and Age Grade Associations
• Trade Guilds
• Market Women Associations
• Youth Organizations


Support for civil society’s role in building democracy in Nigeria thus raises three
(3) Fundamental questions:
1. How can civil society’s meta-role in restoring the interest of the public on the priority agenda of the public on the priority agenda of the political elite be strengthened?

2. How can the centrifugal forces among civil society groups be best managed so that coalitions advocating priority public issues can be maintained?
3. How does the structural division within civil society between interest based organizations and the NGOs impact USAID strategy for assisting civil society’s role in building democracy in Nigeria.


After decades of struggling with military rule, Nigerian Civil Society has emerged as a vibrant, battle-hardened force for change in the Nation’s young democracy. Yet civil society in Nigeria developed in relations to the beleaguered state. Thus the diversity and many complexities that characterize Nigerian politics are reflected in its dynamic civil society, including the contradictions that result in seeking to build a democracy out of a policy that is not a single coherent nation.


Closely related to but different from CSOs are Non Government Organizations (NGOs). NGO are non-governmental organizations which are founded voluntarily by citizens who have the zeal to work for the welfare of the citizens. They are generally formed independent of the government; non-profit making and very active in humanitarian and social causes.

They also include clubs and associations that provide services to their members and the larger society. They have high degree of public trust which make them useful stakeholders for the concerns of society. Some NGOs have been known to be lobby groups for corporations, e.g, the World Economic Forum. But they are distinct from International and inter-government organizations (IOs), in that the latter group is more directly involved with sovereign states and their governments.

Examples of NGOs are: Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, Salvation Army, Emergency Nutrition Network, Health link, Health Net TPO, CARE (fighting against global poverty) and Global Humanitarian Assistance.

Other examples are: INGO – An international NGO such as Oxfam; ENGO – An environmental NGO like Greenpeace; RINGO – A religious international NGO such as Catholic Relief Services; CSO – A Civil Society Organization like Amnesty International.


The Nigerian state began as a colonial imposition on a wide range of polities existing within Nigeria’s current boundaries, making it in many ways a nation of nations several decades of irresponsible military rule, after the exit of the colonialists, left the country as deeply divided as it was prior to independence. Military leaders and their civilian allies exploited ethnic differences to prolong their stay in power and to capture the vast oil revenues that had been centralized under state control since the 1970s. As the mismanaged economy rose-divided with oil prices in the 1980s, the handful of elite with access to the state grew fabulously rich while the number of Nigerians living in poverty rose shockingly from a quarter of the population in the 1970s to three-quarters of the population in the 1990s. The elite-known as the ‘Big Men”-have massive networks of clients dependent upon them for channels to state Largesse.


Nigerian politics is primarily a game of “Big Men” seeking to recoup their election investments and to expand their access to state resources, it often has little to do with improving the lot of the vast majority of Nigerian. The great promises of civil society for democratic development in Nigeria therefore, is that the sector as a whole has the potential to reverse this growing political distance between the powerful elite and the largely disenfranchised masses. Civil society’s strength is in preserving a plurality of aggregated interest to balance those of the elite and to check the elite’s excesses on specific issues on occasion. The latter role, however, depends upon a unanimity among civil society groups that is difficult to forge and even harder to maintain beyond the political moment.

The political elite has long recognized both the promise and problems of civil society, and since the 1960s they have used a combination of repression and cooptation to bring the most powerful and representative of these groups into the orbit of the state. Trade unions, for instance, bear heavy state regulation and are partially dependent upon the state for funds. Nonetheless, unions and other great associations like the Bar Association fought military rule throughout the 1980s and 1990s, and suffered as a result.

As these massive Civil Society groups were hobbled by military interference, many Nigeria activist turned to a new type of organization that began to proliferate in the late 1980s, the NGO. It is important to remember that NGOs are non sub-category of CSOs.

NGOs at first were often small and structured undemocratically in that their executives were not elected by the members of the organization or by the population they sought to serve. Yet NGOs offered services and skills to replace those abandoned by the receding state, and provided critical platform for dissent against the military that international donors could readily recognize and support.
Civil Society organizations balance the strength and influence of the state, they are supposed to protect citizens from abuses of state power. They play the role of monitor and watchdog. They embody the rights to citizens to freedom of expression and association and they are channels of popular participation in governance. Moreover, the end of military rule in 1999 opened political space and provoked a civil renaissance. The older, massive, interest based associations like trade unions and professional associations have rebuilt their structures and reasserted their former dominance of the political scene. Meanwhile, NGOs have proliferated across the country and many have begun the process of democratizing their own structure and developing mechanisms of representation and accountability.

Civil Society has the potential to reserve the growing political distance between the powerful elite and the largely disenfranchised masses. However, CSOs are not of one mind on issues, nor do they speak with one voice. CSOs represents issues from nearly all sides and speaks with a cacophony of interests and demands that overlap, complete and/or contradict one another. In this context, can CSOs bring the government to reflect citizens’ interest?

To be continued…

Thought for the Week

“The ultimate tragedy is not the oppression and cruelty by the bad people but the silence over that by the good people.” (Martin Luther King, Jr.)

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