I have just sighted an online Tribune publication with the caption “Why Bola Tinubu Can Never Be Nigeria’s President”, authored by one Farooq Kperogi dated September 21, 2019.
I have earlier decided not to give the publication attention because the publication is as it is, stale but the content is politically green and a current political affair. Therefore, for the sake of putting history right and correcting the thinking of readers about the stand of the writer of the opinion, whose contents look as if sponsored by enemies of progressive minded politicians, I found the rejoinder pertinent for response.
The opening paragraph of the Kperogi’s article represents his intent and bias against Bola Tinubu. The writeup does not sound like the opinion of the writer rather it looks more like a paid for propaganda against the eminent personality involved.
The article is made up of negative affirmations such words like “Never, not”, phrases such as “Will not…, Tinubu as an unreliable” and sentences like “Tinubu can never be Nigeria’s president “, “Tinubu isn’t electable in any region of Nigeria outside the Southwest, his natal region…” and “So, heads or tails, Tinubu will lose out”, among others.
The political terrain of Nigeria is now fragile and cautions are necessary on matters relating to tribalism and religious differences. The writer alleged that the northerner Muslims are against the South Western Muslims. According to him “…there is an enduring distrust of the authenticity of the Islam of Yoruba Muslims”. The statement could be inciting one tribe against another on religious belief. This is uncalled for at this time when there are security uproars across all regions in the country.
It is better for the writer to come out and campaign for a candidate of his choice rather than start a campaign of calumny against a God sent messiah for the next dispensation.
The author of the article is naïve or has lost memory of a close and Islamic rapport and spiritual unity between the Nigeria Northern and South West Muslims. I wish to remind Kperogi that the immediate past Secretary-General, Nigerian Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs was late Alhaji AbdulLateef Adegbite, a Yoruba man from Ogun State while Professor Ishiaq Oloyede another Yoruba man succeeded him at death and still
maintaining the position till date. Is that not enough to show spiritual unity between the two regions?
Similarly, late Alhaji Abdulwahab Iyanda Folawiyo was the Baba Adini of Nigeria when alive but not Baba Adini of Yoruba land. These eminent Yoruba men are given deserved recognition of their offices by the Sultan of Sokoto and all the Muslims in the north. No time has any northern Muslim
accused a Yoruba Islamic faithful of any thing as claimed by the writer.
Therefore, there are no bases for the writer to derogate Yoruba Muslims as shown in his words “It is often uttered to suggest that the Islam of Yoruba people is fickle, inauthentic, meretricious, syncretic, and untrustworthy”. Can the writer substantiate facts at his disposal on this flagrant use of abusive
words and defamation against the Yoruba Muslims by our Muslim brothers in the north?
As earlier mentioned, the writer is bias and wrote as if he has been paid to defame Asiwaju in the said article. How can one measure the level of another person’s spiritual dedication to his faith? According to the writer “…to compensate for his lack of sufficient Muslim bona fides”, Does Kperogi means Asiwaju is not a practicing or dedicated Muslim? Or not a
Muslim at all? What are the facts behind this? Kperogi should provide the answer.
The writer is so confident in the article that he used affirmative and
assertive words, phrases and sentences to prejudge an election that is as far as two years ahead. Or is the writer writing a prophecy? Even if yes, only God can determine and ascertain fulfillment of any prediction like his.
Therefore, Kperogi lacks authority, which he arrogated to himself in the write up against Asiwaju. The writer is politically and spiritually incompetent to determine Jaganban’s destiny as claimed in the article.
To a serious minded politician and analyst, I feel the writer is confused in the analysis he was trying to make. You will recall he said “Nevertheless, the most important reason Tinubu can never be president is that the people who
currently wield political power, … won’t hand over power to him—or to anybody—in 2023”. Be this as it may, the same writer in the same article in another paragraph says “Members of the cold, calculating, and conniving Buhari cabal have chosen Babagana Kingibe as Buhari’s successor”.
With the above paragraph, which of the two political postulations does the writer want his readers to adopt?
I therefore urge readers to disregard the article as a personal opinion of Kperogi from among over two hundred millions Nigerians. The beauty of democracy is that while the “Minority have their say, majority have their way”.
Babatunde Salami, Ph.D., FFPS
Deputy Director General, Communication and Strategy
Office of the Global Chairman,
Bola Ahmed Tinubu Solidarity Vanguard