Rev. Al Sharpton is an American Baptist minister, prominent civil rights activist, television/radio talk show host, and former presidential candidate of the Democratic Party. He is the host of MSNBC’s Politics Nation with Al Sharpton. When he takes on disingenuous politicians on his show, he would end ridiculing them by admonishing them with this sign off: “Nice try, but we got you.”
When you decided to write about Ndigbo – a subject you didn’t know much about – one can only say to you – “Nice try, but we got you.” Since you have admitted that “I know little of Igbo needs except those I am told by my Igbo friends”, don’t you see that what you have tried to do was to obfuscate your gullible readers. Your article is one of the worst cases of disingenuity and mendacity I have ever read.
Truth be told, since the South East and the South South did not vote for Muhammadu Buhari, they did not stand on good leg to complain about his blatantly lopsided appointments. I get impatient when I read about such complaints. Since the constitution already protects them, they should not be worried. They already know they would get meaningless appointments anyway.
Ndigbo should have been proud of the decision they took to not vote for a dyed-in-the-wool feudalist. The position of Ndigbo and their leaders should have been to “wait and see”, and watch things as they unfold, for things SHALL “insha allahu” unfold – and they are already unfolding faster than you and Bola Tinubu had imagined. To be complaining about Muhammadu Buhari’s appointments – in my opinion – is to be crying more than the bereaved: the Yorubas.
Mr. Olalekan Waheed Adigun, why did you not choose to write on a topic you know very well? An obvious one is that the Yorubas provided Muhammadu Buhari the platform, resources, logistics, foreign political strategists, etc for him to be elected the president a few months back, only for him to turn around today and be giving them a damn finger. Why is it that many of you do not have the balls to admit that you have been involved in a monumental political blunder and miscalculation? Why is it that instead of facing the fact, you and some other spineless writers have chosen to vent your anger and frustration on Ndigbo? Are you that dumb?
There are some Yorubas who did not want to engage in your hide and seek game. They simply come out and call the spade by its name. Here is what Senator Femi Okunrounmu had to say about how Yoruba will regret about voting for Buhari. Are you more or a better Yoruba than him? You are not!
A broken clock is right twice a day, and so is Femi Fani-Kayode. Once in a while, he gets it right. Here is what he had to say to his fellow Yorubas about the man they elected president – You get the Change you desired. “Stop complaining because we told you so.” He was absolutely right.
Here is what the venerable former Bishop of the Akure Anglican Diocese Rt. Rev. Emmanuel Gbonigi had to say about Muhammadu Buhari’s “fulanization” of the federal government – It’s unacceptable for North to produce President, Senate President, Speaker and CJN.
Here is what the former governor of Kaduna State, Abdulkadir Balarabe Musa had to say about Muhammadu Buhari’s appointments – Tell President Buhari to respect Federal Character law.
Here is what The President of the Arewa Youths Consultative Forum, Mr. Yerima Shettima, had to say while criticizing President Muhammadu Buhari’s appointments, saying they are not nationalistic in outlook.
So Mr. Olalekan Waheed Adigun, your statement lacks logic when you write: “The Igbos have not hidden their contempt for the All Progressives Congress (APC) since its formation in 2013. The party’s image has not been redeemed among Igbos with the APC Government led by President Muhammadu Buhari yet to appoint anyone from the South East, the home of the Igbos into his government.” The problem with people like you is that they would want to wish Ndigbo away, but that has never worked.
If Ndigbo had contempt for APC as you suggested, it might be because they already knew APC leaders would never play by the rule or constitution. Guess what? Very soon, Yorubas will start to not hide their contempt for All Progressives Congress (APC) – a party that would not have been born without their blessing and support. When that happens, as it sure will, would you have the balls to give Ndigbo their due respect for seeing in 2013 what you couldn’t see in 2015? I am wondering who are calling the shots in APC today. Is Bola Ahmed Tinubu still one of them?
Here is a history lesson for you. There is nothing Muhammadu Buhari is doing today that would surprise anyone who knew him. He is an ultra-conservative and unrepentant Hausa/Fulani hegemonist. In his first time as the military leader, he made sure he mercilessly and senselessly descended on the southern politicians with ethnic vengeance and animosity, so much so that his first victims did not survive the trauma and the ordeal.
Chief Bisi Onabanjo did not survive it. Prof Ambrose Ali did not survive it. Jim Nwobodo survived it by a whisker but you couldn’t tell by his pictures while on trial in those days that he was the same man that was the governor of the old Anambra State. By the time Muhammadu Buhari remembered that there were some northern politicians he had on house arrest – not prison – the long sentencing had lost its steam and didn’t have any meaning anymore. The first northern politician to be sentenced – Sabo Bakin Zuwo – couldn’t wait to get his meaningless 100-year in jail. He contemptuously told the judge to stop wasting his time, and to give him the damn 100 years.
Mr. Olalekan Waheed Adigun, I would advise you to focus your attention and energy on the change you and your fellow Yorubas have voted for. Do not waste your time writing about Ndigbo – a subject you are not qualified to write on anyway. There is an adage in Igbo that says “A fowl that is being cooked is mad with the cooking pot instead of the knife that killed it and handed it over to the pot.” Since the beginning of the contraption called Nigeria, Ndigbo have always been blamed for all that is wrong with Nigeria. If they are the trouble with Nigeria, why are they still part of Nigeria today? They tried to leave in 1967 but Nigeria said to them – “No way, you can’t leave. You have to be part of Nigeria, even when we don’t like you.”
Even political neophytes know the only thing that Yorubas in APC are waiting for before letting the world know they have screwed up by picking up Muhammadu Buhari is for him to announce his cabinet in the next few days. Here is a guy who had tried three times in the past to be the president of Nigeria but could not be elected because he was unelectable until Bola Ahmed Tinubu selfishly and naively negotiated and handed everything over to him. I bet he would not assign ministries to them until they have been approved by the Senate, and he will, as in the past, assign northerners to strategic and juicy ministries. It is then and only then that the Yorubas would let the world know they did not get any return from their selfish investment.
In case you did not know, the Chief of Defence Staff – a post assigned to a Yoruba man – is a political appointment. The real power belongs to the Service Chiefs, particularly those of the Army and of the Air Force. You know who those Service Chiefs are, don’t you? The Chief of Army Staff controls the budget of the Army while the Chief of Air Staff controls the budget of the Air Force. The budget of the Navy is not comparable to those of the Army and the Air Force because it is not as strategically important to Nigerian military as the Army and the Air Force.
Next time, I would suggest you choose a subject you are competent to write about. Do not allow your ethnic emotions to carry you into the territory of Ndigbo where you will make a fool of yourself.
Nice try Olalekan Waheed Adigun, but we got you!
Sam C. Okudah is a public affairs analyst based in Lagos, Nigeria. He sent this piece through his email: email@example.com