It’s Time to Announce Samson Siasia as the National Team Manager!

Congrats to the U23 Team as they have commenced the Olympics on a good note despite the traveling problems; Etebo has now gone ahead to score 4 goals in one game, I guess making him the leading scorer in the tournament thus far; and possibly a record has just been set by him tonight in the history of the Olympics; and while he has already started playing for Super Eagles before now, I sincerely hope our “Football Expert Analysts” would not come up with that favourite line of “he needs time to mature to play for the National Team?”

etebo

Please, a good player is a good player and can play in any team; we must stop this attitude of “losing players who are coming up at their prime” to this line of argument; players like these ones should get their place in the senior team immediately – the same way their age mates do for their own countries around the world; we need to have these young players star for the senior teams so they can secure bigger clubs away from the smaller unknown clubs they end up playing for that usually end up having their careers “go south.”

When you have players in bigger clubs, your national teams are more feared; and you are able to secure better ratings and respect when you compete; that way you can have an almost never-ending consistent pool of players to draw from; and you are not left to the mercy of always looking for newer players to rescue you on the “D-Days” – please, we have done this style of creating good U17, U20, U23 teams but less potent National Teams for far too long, we must become more patient to allowing the younger players migrate into the national teams as we have seen work for Spain, Germany, Brazil, Argentina, Ghana, Ivory Coast, England, et al; this arguments that seem to suggest that “Nigeria is the only different nation that must do things in a peculiar way that tends to failure” must stop; we must challenge ourselves to be better, not consistently getting worse; all the young players would not end up playing for Super Eagles but a critical number of them must be helped in doing so; a critical number that can help rebuild the fortunes of our senior team.

I have consistently noticed that the average Nigerian is addicted “to the images of when we had the Okochas, Amokachis, Yekinis, etc in the team” – so they are constantly in an Eldorado place of “expecting that day to come back” – well, that day has always been here – they just refused to allow themselves to see that day come – because they have refused to see the players with other names grow into those roles – they keep seeking ‘matured players’ that do not exist anywhere forgetting that you actually have “to allow these younger players to mature.”

Then again, usually, the better coach to raise your national team are more likely those same coaches that raised your younger teams – that way, they together, as youth coaches can groom the same players they have raised from the age cadres into the senior teams because they are the ones that know these players the most – Amuneke, Ugbade, Amokachi, Siasia, et al have done a lot with these younger teams for the last couple of years, and I insist that they together, as a team of coaches should be left with the responsibility of building a potent national team – led by Samson Siasia!

This is how it is done in most other footballing great nations – and please, it is not true as it is often sold by our “expert football analysts” that “you must have coached all the best teams in the world before you can succeed with the senior teams” – Joachim Low of Germany joined Klinsmann as deputy in 2004 from coaching teams in Austria; along with Klinsmann, and Olivier Bierhoff [all former National team players], they were able to rebuild the playing philosophy of the national team – this combination, eventually with Low at the helm of affairs, only 2 years later has led them to successes at the Euros and eventually the World Cup trophy; and despite their Semis ouster at the Euros in 2016, he is taking them to the World Cup in 2018; what lessons can we learn from that?

There has also been this line of thought by some about “Humility” – it is a word that some Nigerians usually love to use when “they prefer mediocres to be in certain jobs” – they love to have people who you can insult; abuse; castigate; mock to stupor and would never respond – someone that you can pick his team for “once you can afford to call into a radio program” and who would change his team for you once you call for such – someone whose playing philosophy would be determined by “folks who analyze football matches at the newspaper vendor spots at the major bus stops in Nigeria” – so, these Nigerians continue on this never-ending push for “a better coach” which they ultimately cannot afford – a coach that actually “does not exist.”

I would rather have “a supposedly dogmatic or seemingly arrogant coach” that believes in his methods and has a working plan built over months or years to succeed than one that “a faked humble demenour and is a YES man” – Nigerians should let Siasia resume the job of the national team coach along with others with him that have played for Nigeria and won trophies for the nation as players and as coaches; and please, this is not about his 5-4 victory this morning; and it is not about anything that would eventually happen during this Olympics, it is about what is okay, right, and actually “affordable for Nigeria.”

Siasia-1.jpgSiasia is also the most qualified of all the Nigerian Coaches [we must stop using the phrase local coaches; it is actually used too often in a demeaning way] we have at the moment who has spent the most times combined around working for and with our national teams; he has built a long track record of consistently rebuilding young teams; always manages to pull out unknown names that end up doing well; and gets to always have the players working for him; and being able to have Mikel lead this Olympic team – a player he had “a famous bout” with when he was Super Eagles Coach would also show some newer level of maturity and composure for him; and it almost feels like an insult to all of our collective mentalities that “he is currently being overlooked by NFF for this job.” Who else would do a better job at this moment than this same guy who has also experienced the “dramas with the Glass House” more often than not yet has managed to his keep his cool at it?

Yes, I did make a call for Oliseh in the past, as I supported the late Keshi when others didn’t give him a chance – that’s how life goes – no one coach would stay in the job forever irrespective of their successes, we must also design a consistent pool of coaches to pick from that have understudied others on the job; that can come in to take over from others from time to time without us being forced to gallivant all over the world for months in search of “managers the nation cannot afford.”

Let’s make Nigerian Football great again.

@favourafolabi

#OccupyTrump as a simile to #OccupyOjota!

women-march-map

Hillary’s Supporters and these “Disguised Women March Story” reminds you of those that gathered for #OccupyNigeria in January 2012 at #Ojota– they just needed an excuse to bring down a democratically-elected President and Government! Rather than for them to wait the turn for the next round of campaigns and elections, they are carrying #NotMyPresident placards all over the place to tempt the police to retaliate; maim some people; possibly kill someone and then use that excuse to blame President Trump for such calamities – the next thing, they’ll be calling for him to be impeached for offenses he didn’t commit and the next thing, you have “another Clueless GEJ story” in the making.


This is what you get from dishonest people who claim “to love Democracy so much” – when the results do not go their way, it becomes a sham process but when they are winning, ‘Democracy is the best thing to have ever happened to mankind’ – the only sin Trump has committed to earn him these marches, is that “He beat a Populist Candidate – Hillary in a democratic process” – it is not his fault – he didn’t rig an election – the people of Rural America who are 100% Americans as those on the streets became ‘the Silent Majority’ that thrusted him into Office and they are the people that traveled [as ordinary citizens, not movie stars or musicians] to attend Trump’s inauguration.


It cost them a lot to come out for the inauguration – and so they might not have measured up to the 1.8m that came out for Obama’s first inauguration yet Obama could have never received those number of votes or attendances if majority of Americans [including those that now voted for Trump] didn’t vote for him – and they cannot stay another night in Washington because they cannot afford 1,000-a-night hotels like the Madonna’s of this world – they have since returned to their counties – to their every day life and would not be found anywhere carrying placards disturbing the peace of no cities.


When you have people lose out in elections and then decide to not attend the inauguration of the next President, then you know you have a people that always pisses on the tenets of Democracy and are nothing but ‘an elitist set of intellectual gangsters’ – when you mix these people with other elites in the entertainment industry who naturally believe that the people they endorse ‘as the big boys of America’ must win every election, then you have a return to ‘a new day militocracy’ – elections in a Democracy would always remain a game of numbers and the respect for the rule of the process – Trump won via the electoral college votes, the same process that has produced the 44 Presidents before him, so, how some people that were equally elected on the same democratic process are labeling him ‘an illegitimate President’ is simply beyond reason to me.


I suspect these marches and organisations and rallies and protests would go on for a much longer time to come – these folks would keep seeking ridiculous excuses to bring this guy down – and they will not stop – that is what happens to bitter people, they become so consumed with hatred until it eats them up – and they will not be able to explain to you why they are fully enveloped by such level of hate and bitterness – and they will do these shamelessly with no care for their hard-earned reputations even to the point of losing it all.


I guess the earlier loss to Trump initially looked like a dream to some of these people but became a reality when they saw he was being sworn in, remember how they had tried all manner of stories to initially de-legitimize his victory, well these would now be the next round of those attacks – what they couldn’t do through the backdoor, they will now attempt to do on the streets, and they can do so because they can afford to do so – and they will find ready support on the platforms of “Barack Obama” who, of course, refused to mention a word about ‘the need for Peace to exist in America for Democracy to thrive’ in all of his speeches leading to him leaving office, even as ‘he is going to be very active as a Citizen in the United States’ in the coming months – he will be expected to come and speak at some of these future rallies – along with his Twin-Wife – the next opposition base would be built very much along these lines.


What Obama couldn’t succeed at doing when he was President in leading the Democratic Party – leading to him losing more than 1,000 seats at all levels of governance as the head of the party, he will now seek to achieve as a former President, his legacy remains not fully written and decided, the world must prepare for the next round of his oratorical prowess ‘in leading Americans in the next direction that they must follow’ – doesn’t that just remind you of a certain Baba at Otta? Obama of course, is the quintessential attention grabber, he would have even preferred for CNN to relay LIVE his speech after leaving Office rather than for the media houses to carry President Trump signing the first executive bills into Law – to the point that these channels were stuck for minutes, taking editorial decision on whether ‘to continue with Obama or switch to Trump?’ Absolutely despicable and low!


Obama will be back – he is not like those before him that would silently retire into their private lives – ‘the ultimate man of the people’ will soon be on the streets of Washington carrying placards versus his successor – that would be such a sight to be behold, indeed.


The next 2 to 3 years promises to be so exciting in the realms of American Politics – and I can almost tell you, even right now, what will happen on every single day of the year between now and November 2020 – every day Americans would do well to study what has happened in Nigeria in the last 5 years – those that came out to ‘Ojota’ are the ones that has produced ‘the new Nigeria’ in which even they are so shocked of its realities that they almost wish ‘they had stayed with the Man that had no Shoes’ – that is what ‘Cheap Elitist Populism’ brings you – it leads you astray to the point that those that brought you there now recoil into their shells to sometimes come back disguising like they are also victims of the same circumstances they helped birth.


The nation of America will probably choose to follow these populist elitists at their own peril as the nation of Nigeria did but then again, I do not need to tell you how the story ends.


Don’t Cry for me, Nigeria!

For years, Nigerians on their own have always screamed to the rest of the world – “Nigeria is the most corrupt country in the world” – they say it at home – and in the Diaspora – the only conversation you are sure to have with any Nigerian, even when you are meeting them for the very first time, in far away Pakistan is “Corruption” – this would be at home; at a wedding; after Church service; at the mall; in the morning; afternoon; night – in the bus; on the plane; at the bus stop – the favourite subject within the Nigerian polity is “Nigeria is a Corrupt place.”
This has always astounded me – even when you are having a business proposal meeting with friends – projecting how you can build enterprises together, the conversation soon ends at “We would have achieved this if not because Nigeria is Corrupt” and when you find folks like myself who would say “Haba, is Corruption the only thing you can discuss about this country?” the response you get is “You must be one of the Corrupt ones; you are protecting your corrupt friends; that’s why you would rather shy away from the truth!

Nigeria_is-corrupt
This has happened to me, severally within the Estate I live in now; and the one I lived before now, for several years, under 3 or 4 different Presidents, under 2 political parties; under 2 governors in Lagos State – the common denominator remains that Nigerians are addicted to the subject of “Nigeria is Corrupt” – it is all over our media – on TV: Radio; Papers; Online – Sahara, Linda, Premium, Cable – globally – “Nigeria when googled must be the number one country in the world that is associated with Corrupt matters or cases or stories” etc.

 

So the question should be this – “na who dey circulate all dis messages within the global media channels?” Is it David Cameron or Nigerians? Is it not the reports from Nigerians about Nigeria that soon becomes the most important thing the world comes to associate Nigeria with? I am therefore confused with this new brand of patriotic vigour that has just been discovered by the same Nigerians that have been the Chief Propagandists, in the past against this nation in complaining against the gaffe by PM Cameron of the UK [whose nation is the very seat of illicit funds all from over the world] – is it now not apparent that this must be the same way an Obama sees Nigeria when discussing the nation under hushed tones with either his inner circle or other world leaders? Wasn’t this the same body language exhibited by President Zuma [a corruption dispenser extraordinaire himself] against Nigeria in recent times? Even Mugabe has joined in on the action in the past on a number of occasions – the moral of the story is “Even a Thief would be proud to come out in public to call your Father a bigger thief if that is ALL you ever discuss about your Father!”

 

I don’t care for Cameron – I cannot control what he says – and I shall not be doing no rejoinders to him – I care about Nigerians and their ever, typically yapping ways – I care about a people who are practically addicted to debasing their nation and have done this for decades – who have made it the favourite past time at all functions to discuss “how Nigeria is a corrupt place” – to the point that this very ideology has now caused a systemic problem of intellectual laziness within this polity that even discourages people – especially the younger ones, to be creative or innovative or entrepreneurial – with every one of them, rather than seeking to create the next Facebook Inc or Twitter Inc would rather use these same tools created by their age mates in other climes to discuss, for 24 hours in a day, “the next set of Billions that has been stolen in Nigeria; and by who” while also defending those that stole N6bn versus those that stole N16bn!

 

O ye Pharises, be truthful to thyself – If you were a foreigner, and you came into Nigeria for the first time, and you had never heard no news per se about Nigeria prior to your coming in – and you spent 2 weeks in Nigeria – and bought at least 3 dailies a day; and watched ChannelsTV news every 10pm; and listened to Jimi Disu on 97.3FM every week day by 7am, would you also not have concluded that “Nigeria is the most corrupt country in the world?” That is the very reason I have captioned this piece as “Don’t Cry for me, Nigeria.”

@favourafolabi

Ita Enang, the Accomplice; Buhari, the Suspect?

Within the Nigerian political space, you can always rely on a section in it to attempt to twist basic logic on its head on any subject matter once they come to realize that they have been found wanting on the subject matter based on their position on same – this Ita Enang matter presents another classic case study in this line and it is my unrepentant position that “it must a very high level of intentional self-inflicted idiocy to be committed by anyone against himself for such a person to attempt to abdicate President Buhari from this #MissingBugdet infraction committed by his staffer – Ita Enang!

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Let’s start from the profile of Enang – he is a 53 year old Lawyer who was a member of the House of Representatives between 1999 to 2011 – that is 12 years before he then became a Senator thereafter and remained in the Senate up until his job as SSA to the President on Legislative Matters – Ita, has therefore been a legislator for the past 16 years – as old as this our current Democracy – that would suppose, in all fairness to him; and irrespective of my personal political inclinations that -he was eminently qualified for this particular job – and that would also mean that Ita definitely understood the full ramifications of the budgeting process as regards such a relationship existing between the Executive and Legislature – finding himself working in a way for two bosses at the same time – one that has just employed him over the last 7 months and another that he has been working for in the last 16 years – so you see, Ita has been around budget presentations, negotiations, discussions, maneuverings for the last 16 years – year in, year out – he can therefore not be described as a push-over in any way when it comes to the job of budgets – so what could have gone wrong? Buhari is what went wrong! Buhari here as a word represents the entire gamut of the executive arm in control of what is put in or removed from the budget – to be presented to Congress and the internal thought patterns and composition of the head of that process being President Buhari.

 

It is about this man – who must do what he wants to do irrespective of how ridiculous such would appear – morality-wise, constitutionally, and process-wise – Ita could not have on his own forged another 1,800 pages document within the space of December 22nd when the document was presented to the National Assembly and this week’s January 11th when this brouhaha became official – he couldn’t have alone, doctored this document – over the holidays – and within a space of 22 days to send same to the National Assembly – without being directed to do so; what would have been his immediate or future reward for that? Was he going to have some monies awarded to his own Office or personal account? Do SSAs have standing budget lines devoid of being connected to a larger Office like that of a Minister or that of the Presidency itself?

 

Let’s face it – the same folks trying to pin this on Enang have a single and only problem – deep down, they are ashamed of these never-ending seemingly industry-line of manufactured controversies coming out of this Presidency – this presidency that they had so much high hopes for and in – they are now confused as to how to continue to defend a man that seems always intent to leave himself open for ridicule and insults – when these same people were alerted some people like myself leading to the close of 2015 that ‘this President had withdrawn this budget via the backdoor from the Senate due to the embarrassment caused it by #BudgetOfYams, they are argued that we were simply trying to create a controversy to malign the man’s reputation yet it was hours after this became such a huge deal that the President miraculously called a Media Chat to douse the same tensions caused by this even though the journalists that conducted the session were practically forbidden from asking any question regarding the budget! The plan worked a little – albeit for a short while – the conversations in the polity shifted, partly away, from the budget to the media chat itself – giving rise to another set of controversies – the President’s seething anger that showed his willingness to enter into the same Boxing Ring to physically punch knock out the tag team of Dasuki and Kanu and his apparent disregard for the Judiciary.

These people that want to hand Ita for this matter are the same ones that insisted this week, after it became public knowledge that the budget was missing, that “it is impossible for the budget to be missing” – well, no be only miss the budget miss, the thing disappear sef and reappeared hours later albeit in a different version – and they are the same people that came up with ridiculous suggestions like “PDP must be the ones trying to sabotage the President by playing games with this copy of the budget presented to the National Assembly” – so you see, it takes a certain degree of unrepentant-ness for these sheep to keep allowing themselves to be flocked about with these lines of reasoning – to come to the conclusion that “Ita Enang should be the one rather than the president to be held liable for this abuse of our democracy that tends towards profanity” – in a save-face attempt to free the President of complicity in this imbroglio; and to hide their own acceptance of self-gullibility for being deceived by their dear President!

 

This is what happens when folks keep defending this President – from the insane actions to the most absurd ones – they keep going deeper down on this ignoble path of moving from being democrats to reasoning like autocrats – who should not be expected to apologize for any folly but must have the world align with his every action – what has gone down here is a first – in this democracy and possibly anywhere in the world – you present a budget to the Legislature that is filled with inscrutable numbers – almost as though a computer software was programmed to randomly assign values to the budget line items – you don’t fact-check this before presenting same to congress and when you discover these errors, rather than respectfully seek to engage the legislature on re-presenting same, you get your staffer that manages your relationship with the legislature to smuggle in another version into the legislature with an about-face that presupposes “nothing can happen joor” – believing that either members of the national assembly would be too dumb to compare the two copies; or would be too afraid to speak up against this; or would be too partisan to disagree with this – since the leader of the majority party was the one playing this hanky-panky.
Then there are also those blaming the Senate and [as always] – Bukola Saraki for these errors – let me try to play along with such people just for argumentative purposes – the President comes on national TV during a joint session of the national assembly to lay down a big box in the middle of everyone – the Senate go on recess thereafter – return in the new year to announce to the nation that “the budget is missing” – so who stole the Budget? In whose Office or safe or locker was the budget kept during the Holidays? Was it in the Office of the Senate President or that of one of the principal officers or ranking members or assembly officials? When this master-copy was declared lost, what happened to the copies already issued out to some members of the Senate as the first copy was being delivered to the Senate? This would suggest some complicity on the part of some of these people or perhaps, the Executive applied some unusual tactics to make sure that first copy was removed from the Senate to forestall the senate from presiding on deliberating on that version once it resumed in January – in good enough time to have the newer version placed back into the Senate – you see, this was never going to end well – some legislators already had copies of the first document; and it was only a matter of time after sending in the newer version for some of them to raise some alarm on this; and how would the numbers be easily re-tabulated based on the changed numbers to still get back to the N6Trn+ final estimates [I hope I am not underestimating the powers of Microsoft Excel Macros and Autofills?] – how much work would you have been able to do on this document over the holidays to still make everything look good? Considering there was already a full and final figure broken down into major subsections/MDAs whose numbers/subtotals could not also easily be reduced to come back to the already finalized at N6trn+? This was therefore always going to end up in a Scandal waiting to happen while employing a lousy Fixer Ita Enang rather than an Olivier Pope-personality to do this – simply, a Mission Impossible with no Tom Cruise on duty!

 

So what happened here is clear and simple – Ita Enang, abeit a Lawyer and ex-legislator had no option but to sacrifice his professional background and all that comes with this; his integrity [if he had any]; expertise in legislative matters; and reputation – all on the altar of pleasing his boss – he was too lily-livered to offer an intellectual disapproval to this plan – and he became willing [or unwilling] accomplice to this act – yet every accomplice must have worked for or collaborated with a principal actor – and that person appears to be the Office of the President as led by the President.

 

Then again, when we are done discussing who is to be the accused or not here, we shall still return to the crazy numbers within these two versions of the budget – how our Austere Chief Servant President intends to defend these numbers to himself; his party; the legislature; to the nation; and to the world remains a herculean and practically impossible job – or perhaps, he will just go along again in his usual defiant I-am-angry-no-one-should-make-me-angrier-than-this style – till this budget year runs out to come up with some populist-seeking review in the middle of the year?

 

Nevertheless, I suspect more of these sort of conflict of interest debacles would keep happening while this government remains in Office in the course of the coming months – many more of those working for this President while being too afraid of him would commit grave errors while also trying to please him – you can never do well or get it right when working for a boss you’re too afraid of  – because you can never know how to please him – you never know when he will be happy or angry or choose to be a recluse to sulk – you are more likely to keep sacrificing your own personal integrity to fall on the sword for him while trying to keep your job – this again, presents a completely different wahala to this Presidency and Executive – when those that work for and in it are as afraid of its CEO as the people of the nation are as afraid of the same President – those that sell you that crap of “Nigerians are goats and need a tough hand” would sure rejoice at this emerging trend but they would later come to see the larger and graver implications of such for this polity at a time that I pray it won’t be too late to have the nation retrace its steps away from the apparent impending dangers that the continuation of such a trend bids for this nation.

 

@favourafolabi

 

Goodluck Jonathan is my Man of the Year – 2015


During the December 31st Service of 2014, my Reverend Chris Oyakhilome after declaring 2015 as “The Year of Triumph” for us – had in the closing hours of the service – in the early hours of 2015 taken time out to pray for “Nigeria” – he had exhorted that “Despite all the tension in the land, the coming elections which a few months away would be PEACEFUL despite all the tensions in the land” – to this, our brethren, all around the world had shouted a resounding “AMEN.”

 

But if you were living in Nigeria in December 2014, you would have agreed that “indeed, it took a lot of faith to say that Amen” considering the “counter-threats and counter reports of oncoming War” and many wondered after my Pastor had prayed “How would these things be” – Alas, the Prophecy of my Man of God came to pass – the MIRACLE the nation needed was “A PHONE CALL” – one placed (despite all entreaties by many around him as we later discovered” by the then President Goodluck Jonathan to the now President Buhari – and Alleluia, the Nation had Peace – this man allowed GOD to use him to let Nigeria have Peace.

 

How many times, in the Bible Days; and thereafter have nations had leaders that shunned God’s entreaties? Leaders that allowed the devil to take over their minds with bitterness, pride, and arrogance “daring for the nation to burn” just so they can have their way – it is important to discuss this because some analyst [who apparent are unfamiliar with the revelations of a faithful God] said “GEJ had no option; what would he have done? America would have moved against him” – what they didn’t tell you was “Hitler also had “No Option” when it got to a time during the war yet “he didn’t flee neither did he seek amnesty or a deal or soft-landing” – Ghaddafi also had “No Option” – just like Saddam Hussein also had “No Option” – and of course – Laurent Gbagbo also had “No Option” and it seems that currently, Syria’s Assad also has “No Option.”

 

What all of these ‘Leaders’ have in common in is “They all had No Option but they created an Option for themselves” – to see the nation go down in flames as they also go down – they were not going to be alive “to see the nation continue without being the ones at the helm of affairs” – so what they did was ‘stay put while the nation was consumed even if they have to die while that happens’ – these were Leaders who must have their own way and no longer cared how many more lives ‘went down the drain with them’ – to them, once the nation can burn down along with them, the nation would have also come to realize that the citizens therein that moved against them made a mistake by doing so – because the cost of removing them would probably outweigh that of ‘continuing to manage them if they had been allowed to remain in Office’ – as the nation goes on to lose thousands or even millions of lives – and probably spends the next couple of years to recover from the imbroglio or ensuing war.

 

That was the story in Gbagbo’s Ivory Coast; and even though there has been another election cycle after his arrest – 4 years after, the nation remains quite polarized along those lines – that remains the story today in Ghaddafi’s Libya – even though he died 4 years ago – even the almighty US paid part of the price by the losing their Ambassador that was killed in the middle of the resulting tensions – today, Libya is one of the modern homes of ‘Islamic Terrorists.’

 

Ghaddafi was removed from Office in 2003 [and killed three years later] – that was 13 years ago – nevertheless, Iraq remains a war zone, even today – and it took Germany decades to recover from Hitler – leading to the nation splitting into two for another 50 or so years – before being reunified again – people who are not good students of History have a nasty and profane way of attempting to water-down the acts done “men of Peace” who chose to not go in the direction of some other ‘villains’ before them – in Nigeria, some said “GEJ would have had the support of his own local communities, if he chose to take that route of the villain; that he would have had the support 12 million people that voted for him urging him on; that some global powers could have even aligned with him” – in fact, till this date, some of his Supporters insists “The Man na mumu sef; hin for no gree considering the evidences he had against Jega wey do ojoro.

 

I worked quite closely around GEJ’s Campaign – I received a barrage of phone calls from the community immediately after “Goodluck placed that Call to Buhari” – so many calls, wondering “why a C-in-C would allow himself give up that cheaply” – If you recall, within minutes of that phone call, I also did a very well circulated Op-ed in which “I equally conceded the polls to Buhari and congratulated him therein” – this turned out to be very shocking to a lot of my online followers – because they knew no one wrote more against Buhari (save for maybe FFK) within the Nigerian Polity leading to the elections 7 years more than myself – but you see – what many did not know at the time [and probably still do not realize] about me is “I am first a Christian before I am a Politician” – the Word of God is more important to me than Aso Rock!

 

I will never forget one particular call I received the morning after that GEJ phone call from a gentleman who is now highly placed in the PDP hierarchy who said “we are planning to take to the streets in Abuja; how can GEJ place such a call; we have evidence against Jega; join us to March on the streets; why did you write that article? It was too premature” – but I told him like I told others – “The Man who should be most pained has already listened to the Voice of God and conceded; wetin come be our own; Bros, I no dey comot for my house” – days after this, I even suspected from the way some of my “PDP friends were relating to me” that they were imagining that “Perhaps, I had being compromised; may be I received some overnight monies from APC since I was pro-bono-ing for GEJ” – they were right “I had been compromised by the Holy Spirit to move on.”

 

On this first day of 2016, I pray to God in the name of Jesus Christ “to raise newer leaders for Nigeria – and Africa that would treasure the Peace and Prosperity of their Nations beyond their own personal interest for Power, Fame, Influence, and Wealth” and with this message, I wish to announce “Dr. Goodluck Jonathan as My Man of the Year – 2015” – for indeed, if he had rejected the counsel of God to place that phone call, Nigeria would most likely have been at war as we entered into 2016; I pray for himself and his family today, that the Peace they helped Nigeria secure would ‘be spread abroad’ in their own lives as well.

 

Happy 2016 to you all.

As Zakzaky as Yusuf?

zakzaky-yusuf

History has a nasty way of repeating itself – especially in climes where the people love to live in self-deception – follow me to compare the antecedents of these two men:
1. Mohammed Yusuf, the head of Boko Haram – was always a problem about to happen; the Nigerian authorities knew about this; there were so many security reports against him; and was even arrested under Yar’Adua before the then President listened to leaders from the North that visited him “begging for him to be released” – he was released; and then months later he ran into another confrontation with the Police which eventually led to his death

 

2. President Yar’Adua at the time even disagreed with the report by the Police of how the attack happened – mind you – this 2009 Boko Haram uprising was a conflict between Boko Haram, a militant Islamist group and Nigerian security forces. Violence across several states in northeastern Nigeria left over 1,000 dead, with around 700 killed in the city of Maiduguri alone, according to one military official!

 

3. Prior to the clashes, many local Muslim leaders and at least one military official had warned the Nigerian authorities about Boko Haram. Those warnings were reportedly ignored! The rest as they say is History – Nigeria has now lost several thousands of lives to Boko Haram over the course of the last 7 years.

 

4. Enter, El-Zakzaky, Sheikh Zakzaky was a political prisoner for nine years during the 1980s and 1990s, accused by successive military regimes of civil disobedience.
5. Zakzaky is fluent in English, Hausa, Spanish, Arabic and Persian languages. He has lectured in Nigeria, Sierra Leone, Niger, Algeria, Britain, France, Spain, the United States, Lebanon, Azerbaijan and Iran.

 

6. His supporters have been involved in many violent clashes with the state over the decades – 120 of his followers are currently in prison [as at 2012] – and political analyst Muhammad Kabir Isa says they do constitute a genuine threat. Mr Isa, a senior researcher at Ahmadu Bello University, describes the sheikh’s movement as “a state within a state”. “I know for one that his outfit embarks on drills, military drills; But when you embark on military drills, you are drilling with some sort of anticipation. Some form of expectations; I know for example he is making sure his members are recruited into the army, his members are recruited in the police force, he has people working for him in the state security service,” he said.

 

7. Way back in 2001, after the 9/11 bombings, El-Zakzaky was warning the US “of mass response if they moved too much against the Extremists that perpetrated the act” [paraphrased] – his exact words in an interview to BBC was “If we want a million people out on the streets on any issue we can do that

 

8. El-Zakzaky has been holding an annual procession with thousands of his followers on the streets of Zaria for years – and most of the time, this has led to deaths based on clashes with the authorities: in 2014, 3 of his sons along with 32 other followers were killed during one of those confrontations; He named his sons killed as Mahmud of Al-Mustapha University, Beirut; Ahmad, a chemical engineering student at Shenyang University, China; and Hamid, an aeronautical engineering student at Xian University, China. The fourth son, Ali was shot in the leg but survived.
Mind you, this procession happened a few hours after an attack was launched on Buhari’s vehicle [remember that incident] and the nation was still under shock but that didn’t stop the group from going on this procession – in the same state!

 

9. Such incidents leading to deaths had occurred in 2009 and thereafter and only a few days ago, this time in 2015, another 50 people have died in a similar clash with suggestions that El-Zakzazy followers tried to kill the Chief of Army Staff – Buratai.

 

10. It has now been reported that “El-Zakzay’s home has been raised down by the Army and that some of his followers have gone on the streets protesting!
Can you notice any similarities here?

 

11. Meanwhile, one more analogy here – Nasir El-Rufai is the governor of Kaduna State; and the state also has Senator Shehu Sani – these two guys were some of those that blamed Goodluck Jonathan for the most for all the failings of his government versus Boko Haram and violent Islamic Extremism in Nigeria at the time – read what Shehu Sani said last year when the El-Zakzaky’s sons were killed:
[begin]
Sani said the President should call the military and security agencies to order with a view to stopping the recurring killing of innocent citizens.
 
In a statement, he said it was the same type of impunity by security agencies that led to Boko Haram insurgency since 2009.
 
He said: “We have received the tragic story of the gruesome and cold blooded killing of the members of the Sheikh El-Zakzaky led Islamic movement in Zaria by armed soldiers. We have learnt that members of the movement were fired at while on their yearly peaceful procession, in solidarity with the people of Palestine.”
 
“The unprovoked attack and killing of the members of the Islamic movement by the soldiers stand unreservedly condemned. The killings are cruel, inhuman, barbaric and a dangerous act with wider security implications for the peace and stability of our country.
 
“It is most unfortunate and sad that our security forces have not learnt their lessons on the grievous implications of cold blood killings of religious leaders or their faithful.
 
“While the nation is still battling with the insurgency in the Northeast, which was triggered by the extra judicial killing of Mohammed Yusuf in 2009, a new front is deliberately and mischievously ignited by Nigerian soldiers.”
 
He said the dastardly killings confirmed that security forces had been part of the insurgency problem in the North.
 
He added:”The tragic incidence in Zaria is a clear testimony that our security forces are part of the problem. The unprovoked attack and killing of the members of the movement is a reprehensible and abominable act capable of triggering a wider bloodletting and endless conflict.
 
“The impunity and brigandage by our security forces undermines the peace and stability of our country and by extension the authority and credibility of the Government.”
 
Sani said the military and security agencies must be directed to operate within the ambit of the laws.
 
“President Goodluck Jonathan must take charge and responsibility of the situation on the ground. The buck stops on his table. A systematic policy and strategy of gross rights violations by security forces in the guise or excuse of fighting terrorism is unacceptable. Shooting peaceful protesters is tantamount to encouraging armed rebellion.”
[end]

 

12. At the time, Shehu Sani was hoping to become a Senator; and of course was speaking as an Opposition member; and explored the problem to score political points; Nasir El-Rufai, of course said worse things but unfortunately for him, he is now the Governor of the State while Sani is now a member of the Senate, so it would be interesting to hear what their current position on this new wave of madness on their soil would be; would Nasir now be able to blame “the Military under his boss – Buhari for this?”
13. Just in – Sheik Muhammad Turi, a leader of the Shi’ia sect in Kano, has been confirmed killed in Zaria following a clash between the sect and the military over the weekend. Turi’s killing has sparked tension in Kano, as members of the sect staged a rally from Saturday night till about 4am on Sunday. A second rally held on Sunday around Fagged Mosque, popularly known as ‘Waje Mosque’. According to a Kano resident, tens of thousands of Shi’ia members trooped to the nooks and crannies of Kano, passing through the palace of the emir of Kano, Alhaji Muhammadu Sanusi II, and raining expletives on the military personnel attached to Tukur Buratai, chief of army staff. Yusuf Aliyum, a Shi’ia member who participated in the nocturnal protest, told TheCable that “every member of the sect was prepared to fight to his last drop.”[Source: https://www.thecable.ng/just-in-tension-in-kano-over-killing-og-shiia-leader]

 

In closing, I have now paid attention to the subject matter on my walls in the last couple of days but I have done nothing new – I did similar articles 8-10 years ago; I spoke of the impending dangers of looking away from creating an enabling habitat for Islamic Extremism in Nigeria – I was initially called a bigot that hated Islam; that was before GEJ became President; when he became President and I wrote of this as well, I was said to have been paid by GEJ to launder his image; and today, I am writing about this as well – so, please, who is paying me now? Is Buhari the one paying me now since I am writing in support of the Military that he is the Commander-in-Chief of? Or perhaps I am now seeking a job as the SSA Social Media from Buhari?

 

An egbon called me earlier today – praising me for the boldness to speak on these matters when many others are shying away from it – and I told him “the Spirit of God that lives in me compels me to speak of the rare truths many are afraid to confront” – and I have done that again – and my conscience is clear – Nigeria now seems to have become a nation in which its people seems to “desperate to destroy themselves by getting addicted to lies!”

 

The Ongoing Shiite v Sunnis fight on Nigerian Soil

Several years ago, before GEJ became President, before Boko Haram became such a huge menace, in the early days of Umar Yar’Adua, I did a series articles regarding:

1. The Preaching of Islamic Extremism by Clerics in the Core North

2. The encouraging habitat for Islamic Extremism in the Core North based on the receptive nature of the leaders to such excesses of these clerics

3. The impending danger to Nigeria in keeping Sharia Law within our constitution while claiming to be a Secular State

4. How the ex-Leader of Boko Haram had Northern Leaders go and beg Umar Yar’Adua to have him released – which the then President did prior to the clash with the police that led to his death – and led to what has become “the real Boko Haram” today

5. The lousy nature of the elites – first from the North; and then the South to live in denial about all of these – while always choosing to play the political correctness game.

6. As I wrote of all of these, I equally mentioned how the world might increasingly be faced with a situation in which the world would become a larger stage for the Sunnis v Shiite fight – how the Middle East would no longer be the primary turf for this ancient-long fight

7. I warned Nigerians not to encourage Nigeria to become “a stadium” for this by throwing ridiculous rhetorics like “Poverty is the cause of extremism” plus “PDP is the reason that’s causing this poverty” – but true to type, dem no hear me

8. Then, the rest is History, after the Iraq, Syria, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Nigeria is now possibly the next nation that has suffered the most loss of lives and properties; and dent to the economy in the last 5 years to “Core Islamic Extremism”

9. As I kept raising these issues during GEJ’s term, I was told “I was being paid by him to launder his image” – the Soldiers under him were even blamed when El-Zakzaky held his annual procession that led the loss of lives – as happens every other year – including this year – even though he lost two or three of his sons in the last year’s clash – recall that, close to 10 years ago, this guy was listed by BBC as “one of the most dangerous Nigerians”

10. The rest as they say is History – only yesterday, Nigeria almost lost our hard-working Buratai, the Chief of Army Staff to the Sunni Clash!

Well, you can be sure, after reading 1-10 above, some people would still say “I am writing these because GEJ lost the election and that I am still bitter from the loss” – some would still say “the constitution protects the rights of every Nigerian to practice his religion/faith/doctrine as he pleases (even such is leading to the loss of human lives)”; and some would still say “Poverty as caused by GEJ/PDP is the cause of Extremism.”

If you’re not yet tired of the cheap rhetoric in this nation that continually seems to lead the Nigerian State into the doldrums, then you must be a very tough-minded person – and I congratulate you for that – I have not yet seen any nation in which it’s own people seem to passionate to destroy it with their own very hands – and in fact, compete very vigorously to be the first to do so as though “there was a gold medal plus $100 reward for doing so” as I have consistently seen with the Nigerian State in the course of the last two decades.

@favourafolabi