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The Moral Blemish on the Tinubu Presidency – By Tochukwu Ezukanma


By Tochukwu Ezukanma | Lagos, Nigeria | September 26, 2023 – With his Emi lokan bombast, Bola Ahmed Tinubu cut the image of a vainglorious megalomaniac, and struck many Nigerians as boastful and offensively self-assertive. As president, on his return from his first foreign trip, his motorcade from the airport to his Lagos residence counted more than 120 cars. That was a grandiose and inexcusably, indiscreet spectacle that cast the president as insensitive and self-indulgently extravagant. The president of the world’s capital of poverty should have avoided such pomp and triumphalism. Such injudicious ostentation smacks of contemptuous indifference to the deepening and widening poverty and increasing economic misery of Nigerians.

He had, on the day of his inauguration, removed the fuel subsidy, which was not wrong in itself. However, it should have waited till our local refineries become operational and some economic mollifying programs put in place for the endlessly debased, suffering and patient Nigerian masses. The removal of the subsidy, coupled with the continued depreciation of the naira and spiraling inflation, has made life insufferable for so many Nigerians. But what else could have been expected from a president that pledged to continue from the Buhari administration? The continuation with the policies of that most corrupt, irresponsible, dictatorial, disruptive administration in the history of Nigeria can only spell doom for Nigeria.

The hailers of President Tinubu can rightly argue that his “Emi lokan” was the lyricism of an ambitious politician, just the verbal flamboyance of an ambitious man that got misconstrued; and given the wrong meaning and connotation. After all, great and ambitious men are usually associated with epigrams and grandiloquence. For examples: Mohammed Ali, “I am the greatest”; Martin Luther King Jr., “I have conquered the fear of death”; Charles de Gaulle, “You talk about France, France, I am France”; and Nnamdi Azikiwe, “I am above human destruction”.

They can also argue that history has demonstrated that the extravagance of a leader and even, his indifference to the welfare of his people may not totally repudiate him. After all, Charles de Gaulle was quoted as saying, “I did not liberate France to worry about housing”. With his high-minded concerns, like the glory, grandeur and the place of France in history, he could not condescend to worrying about pedestrian issues, like food and shelter.

Tinubu’s anti-people economic policies and insensitivity to the economic miseries of Nigerians may be because he is fixated on more rarified issues of statecraft, and can therefore, not stoop to the pedestrianism of food and housing and other aspects of the welfare of the people. Moreover, for a man of his “timber and caliber” that literally achieved impossible political feats, including that abracadabra vault from a loser to a victor, to become the president, it may be too unbecoming of him to preoccupy himself with the worries of the poor and downtrodden.

The Marcoses of the Philippines once justified their plush and profligate lifestyle in a notoriously impoverished country with, “The people want a first (family) they can be proud of”. It is therefore possible that in the flamboyance and swank of his presidency made evident in his colorful and overstated motorcade, Tinubu was orchestrating the image of a president the people can be proud of.

It is too early to accurately access the Tinubu presidency. However, many Nigerians believe that for a questionable character, with a murky precedence, like Tinubu to become the president of Nigeria presages an inauspicious future for Nigerian democracy. Secondly, it has been stated that, “Nobody who steals political power uses it for the good of the people”. But then, pundits and prophets can be wrong; they have actually, been repeatedly wrong. And they reserve the right to be wrong, for no one can lay a claim to infallibility. So, despite the postulations of the pundits, Tinubu’s stolen power can still be directed to the most constructive and beneficial ends for Nigeria and Nigerians.

However, no achievements of his, as president, will belie his fiendish “victory”. It was a victory that betrayed all decency and exalted the abyss. Nigerians and the global community understand that Tinubu has no moral authority to speak for Nigeria. He was roundly and emphatically rejected by the Nigerian electorate in the February 25th, 2003 presidential election. Even, if he turns out to be the best president in the annals of Nigeria, and rights all our societal and national wrongs, it will not legitimize his presidency. His accomplishments, as president, will remain meretricious. And their laudation will be comparable to glorifying proceeds from prostitution or armed robbery. Prostitution and robbery can be rewarding; they can bestow wealth and a good life. However, whatever accrues from them is tarnished by their inherent depravity.

From the pedestal of the presidency, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, as the personification and repository of the powers of the Nigerian government, holds sway over more than 200 millions Nigerians. From this pinnacle of power, he can pontificate like the Pontiff; luxuriate in the prerogatives and perks of presidential power; prance to the cadence of power; savor the pomp and pageantry of the office, and ultimately leave indelible footprints in the sand of time. However, it was not the electoral choice of Nigerians, but corruption, fraud and violence in their most egregious and odious forms that brought him to power. And they remain a moral albatross and an indelible moral blemish on his presidency.

Tochukwu Ezukanma writes from Lagos Nigeria | [email protected] | 0803 529 2908

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Posted by on Sep 26 2023. Filed under Articles, Columnists, NNP Columnists, Presidency, Tochukwu Ezukanma. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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