From Palace To Politics Fulani Emirs Mass Against Tinubu By Francis Ojo



    …The Emir Of Kano Sends His Insults

    Sitting regally on an elevated chair, heavily hooded in conflicting colours, looking blank and unemotional and acting pretentiously harmless, Emir Ado Bayero of Kano, having conveniently installed a translator in spite of his erudite and educated background was determined to milk this ambush he had set up for Oluremi Tinubu, First Lady of Nigeria who had been invited to commission a Hall of learning in Kano. Hardly had the First Lady taken her seat before His Highness launched his mischief: “The hunger and starvation didn’t start with this government but the situation has become more alarming and needs urgent attention. “The issue of insecurity is another serious problem we are facing. I know your government inherited it, but something more serious should be done to take care of the threats.”

    This was far too unusual to be expected both in message and in means of communicating it. Why would this highly educated leader choose to communicate with the First Lady in a language meant for his local audience? Why do it in very untraditional way as his culture does not factor a wife in communication with male spouses in matters of State? Why do this through unorthodox means when more traditional and formal methods abound for him. The Governor of the State in attendance is always available to send to the President; Kano has Ministers in the Government and Kano Senators and House members are very many to oblige his royal majesty. The Monarch has the President’s direct red lines. No doubt, the man is engaged in sinister moves to embarrass and escalate the distance between the good people of Kano and the President of the Country. Then, as if reading the First Lady’s enquiring thoughts, he quickly added: “Although we have several means of communicating to the government on our needs and requests, but your way and means is the surest way to tell the President the actual happenings in the country,” Surely, This message was one of opportunism, delivered to the people to hang President Tinubu up as architect of their age-old hunger and designer of their self-inflicted insecurity. So, this naughty, unkind and insulting platform was structured for mischief to waylay and subject Mrs Tinubu and the President to embarrassment and perhaps engineer an insurrection for an illegal change. Was there a time he tried this with Mrs Buhari? Could he have dared this reckless adventure with Obasanjo? If Bayero’s intention was for the welfare of the poor, his next words would betray his true intentions: “We are receiving series of messages from our people. One of such messages is the much talked about relocation of CBN and FAAN to Lagos. I think the government should come out clean on this matter and talk to Nigerians in the language they would understand.

    Now, what is the business of the Emir of Kano in the internal reorganization of the CBN and the movement of personnel of the FAAN, a department of the Ministry of Aviation? Is that his duty, responsibility or any of his concerns? What is Abuja to him? Is Abuja a Kano satellite city in Northern Nigeria?



    A few days later, February 12 2024, the Sultan of Sokoto His Eminence, Sa’ad Abubakar led a robust meeting of Northern Emirs to send threats to the President. Not waiting to take a pause, raging like a bull and breathing like a bull fighter, the monarch sent a direct threat to President Tinubu: “Let’s not take it for granted; people are quiet, they are quiet for a reason, because people have been talking to them; we have been talking to them, we have been trying to tell them things will be okay and they keep on believing. I pray to Almighty Allah that they will not one day wake up and say we no longer believe in you. Because that would be the biggest problem, because we can’t quieten these people as traditional, spiritual leaders and diplomats forever.”


    Before you can shout ‘hey’, rallies had started from Minna in Niger State. But in a bizarre twist, the Yoruba base of the President had been organized into a cauldron of protests. “ Ebi npa wa” was now the new slogan on the streets of Ota, Ibadan, Ekiti and spreading. The best journalists and writers in Nigeria, of Yoruba stock have become opposition leaders to the Tinubu Government, not realizing they are being recruited to hand over Government back to those who ruined it. Television Station of the opposition like ARISE news had taken up the challenge. But more alarming was the infection that gripped Imams in mosques and traditional poets called ‘Akewi’ all Yoruba. The Yoruba have been cursed again. The Fulani did this to Oyo Empire and inherited Ilorin forever. It is like the Yoruba have been hypnotized once more.


    The Government of President Tinubu suffers from two serious recruitment lapses. The Chief of Staff brings a huge image baggage. He gallivants openly all over the place launching this and donating that. And a foul smell of rumoured immoral acts circle around him like a rotten egg. Few people remember that General Abdullahi sat in that office for Obasanjo because he never showed his face to the public. General Arogbofa, now late served Goodluck Jonathan but nobody knoew him or that the erudite and internationally experienced diplomat, Agboola Gambari was Chief of Staff to President Buhari. They did their jobs behind camera lenses and showed us that the job of Chief of Staff is a serious support mechanism for the President. More serious still is the recruitment into the Information system of Government. You can recall the very effective team of Dele Alake, Festus Keyamo and Femi Fani Kayode giving to Atiku and Obi more than they took during the election. How did this Government come up with that rookie, that light skinned journalistic sophomore? Can you compare the Information team of Buhari consisting of that irrepressible Garba Shehu, that restless Femi Adesina and oh, Lai Muhammed to that of President Bola Tinubu?


    Because of this vacuum in Government with nobody to explain what is happening, even the traditional base of the President, the Yoruba Nation, is now at the forefront of organizing rallies against him. The South West is now organizing to sabotage the Government which should demonstrate to the entire nation, the dignity of the values of Governance we have always accused others of neglecting. Now, the Fulani are encouraging Yoruba to sacrifice their boy in office for eight months, Tinubu, when they protected their own, Buhari for eight long years. And without thinking, the Yoruba are pledging their loyalty to those who will never do harm to their own. Let me explain this with a song. It is a Yoruba folklore modernized and made popular by legendary Fela Kuti.

    Ìyá, Ìyá takùn wálè (à lù jon-jon ki jon)

    Gbogbo aiyé pa yèyé rè je (à lù jon-jon ki jon)

    Efòn pa yèyé è je o (à lù jon-jon ki jon)

    Erín pa yèyé è je o (à lù jon-jon ki jon)

    Kìnìún pa yèyé è je o (à lù jon-jon ki jon)

    Gbogbo aiyé pa yèyé è je o (à lù jon-jon ki jon)

    Ajá gbé tiè ó dòrun ooooo (à lù jon-jon ki jon)

    A lu jon-jon i oo (à lù jon-jon ki jon)


    It was a season of hunger in the animal kingdom, a pervading environment of an all-encompassing famine and scarcity. All the animals in the kingdom came together to devise a solution to ride this tide. The dog suggested that, since the old are near their grave already, able bodied animals should bring their mother to be sacrificed and shared for meals. And everybody agreed. The lion, king of the jungle brought his mother, she was carved up and devoured. The elephant cooperated and his mother disappeared into hungry mouths. Now it came to the turn of the source of the brilliant idea, the dog, it was discovered he had disappeared with his mother to heaven. While he would eagerly kill and eat other’s mothers, he would never sacrifice his own. This is that season of famine and hunger. The North have now hidden Muhammad Buhari from blame and protected the reckless man from the anger of the people but the Yoruba have now brought their own forward for sacrifice. There is a saying in Yoruba. “ Ààbò òrò la n’so f’ómólúàbí, B’ó dé’nú’è, á d’odindi.” A wise man needs only a few coded words to interpret the sense in a message.


    Now these are the simple explanations Tinubu’s Government information team find difficult to articulate.


    No President initiated the importation of violence into the South and middle belt and indeed into the North West until President Muhammad Buhari and his cohorts like Governor El Rufai approached and encouraged the nomads of the Sahel to settle forests bringing cows and AK47. The Bandit and herder insecurity accompanied with violence, kidnapping was a Northern leadership initiative that backfired on the entire nation. Tinubu while doing his best cannot stop this overnight.


    When core North Emirs complain about a government, 8 months in clinical exercise of corrective surgery on the harm and injury inflicted, pretending that they are not aware of the history, that while all this recklessness was going on, that they did not partake and enjoy it, we look and pity them. Buhari became president May 29 2015. He inherited a foreign reserve of 29 billion dollars. Between 2015 and 2023, he had vacuumed this fund and borrowed 32 billion dollars. From external debt of Jonathan of 10 billion dollars, Buhari left 43 billion dollars to Tinubu. These Emirs all enjoyed the carnival when it lasted.


    That the Country is awash in Naira with few goods and dollars is the damage left over by the Buhari recklessness, printing 30 trillion Naira by ways and means, like Idi Amin of Uganda. When a few years ago, Godwin Obaseki, Governor Edo State and experienced Banker to boot cried out that Buhari with Emefiele were printing Naira recklessly, people accused him of politicking. Here we are, our beloved Emirs!


    Now with huge revenue from Petroleum subsidy savings, our Emirs are yet to ask their Governors what they are doing with these billions. They dare not otherwise their Local Government Chairmen will remove them like a cancerous cell. These Governors are stocking dollars into their huge Babanriga and the Emirs know it. But they can blackmail Tinubu because of their contempt for presidents other than Northern ones.


    This is the margin business feeding both the lazy but connected elites and their salesmen mallams, all making billions from arbitrage. They want to protect the fraud as it is so lucrative and important for their survival. You can smell these from the fumes coming out of the Emefiele scandals.


    This needs no further explanation. The NNPC is a cesspool of corrupt subsidy. And only Northerners have been permanently planted here from time immemorial. The elites who harvest this crime feed some of these traditional rulers regularly. They are therefore seeking a reversal and need these pressures.


    In the eight ethnically driven years of Buhari, the children of the elites of the core North have been squeezed into lucrative positions of Government in Abuja. These spoilt kids do not want to relocate to elsewhere where they can be useful. They with help from their parents are putting pressure on Government through these Emirs and other influential people to leave them be. What is the business of banking supervision in Abuja when all the banks are headquartered in Lagos? How about in aviation; Emirate, British Airways and all other Airlines are headquartered in Lagos. What are the inspectorate departments doing in Abuja? Is this rocket science or quantum physics that Government cannot explain?


    Nigeria must begin the process of planning a new arrangement of association now and the President must be a statesman rather than a politician. You can call it what you want; restructure or reprogramming or anything. No single federal government can bear the burden of responsibility in this rickety ‘BOLEKAJA’ vehicle we are all squeezed inside and chocking convulsively. Whoever believes he can delay the process for a future political opportunity must be humble for only God knows the pictures tomorrow may paint. The work of redistribution of power and responsibility; the redesign of association based on fairness and creating a culture of competition among the federating arms can only happen when these federating organs are freed up.

    -Francis Ojo

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