RE: “Anyaoku, Adebanjo, Idika Kalu, Other Patriots Accepts Tinubu”.
A rejoinder By Bolaji O. Akinyemi
We didn’t accept Tinubu- The Patriots
“No! This is a wrong caption: We didn’t accept Tinubu but accepted the reality of his government, which derives from the finality of Supreme Court Judgement”!
That was the word from the Head of the Secretariat of the Patriots; Olawale Okunniyi conveying the dissatisfaction of the group on my choice of caption.
I am not unaware of the demand for details and clarity that a group of Eminent Personalities from which some of the best legal minds the country has ever had; represented by FRA Williams and Professor Ben Nwabueze who has passed into glory will place on a public communication emanating from them. Now being led by Chief Emeka Anyaoku, GCON, CFR, a man who is not just a diplomat but a portrait of same for many generations to come. Diplomacy must be the religion where such idol is seated. Enriched with the egalitarianism ideology of Awolowo by the presence of Pa Ayo Adebanjo, and a celebrated economist of no mean repute Dr Kalu Idika Kalu and several other Elders. I unfortunately use a caption that stated the fact of our quagmire as nation without a reflection of the sincere intention of the Elder Statesmen. My sincere apology to all concerned without excluding the reading public.
“Ai mo owo we lai baa agba jeun” meaning inability to wash clean ones hands will deprive one of eating with the Elders.
I do not take for granted the invitation of Elders who in every sense represent nobility to join them at the table to get Nigeria to work.
The misrepresentation was never intended. My lateness to the meeting robbed me of the opportunity of being part of the debate that evolved the position of the Elder Statesmen on the State of the Nation.
A Yoruba adage better captures the drama of the house in session during the debate, I am made to understand, “Oro so si ni l’enu, o bu iyo si, iso re ko se e ponla iyo o si se e tu danu” meaning their are matters that are both fart and salt in one’s mouth, fart is not palatable to lick and the salt is impossible to spew out!
2023 was a fart in the mouths of all Nigerians and it remains so!
The ruling of the Supreme Court is no less the same, but the civility to respect the rule of law compelled the acceptance of the unpleasant reality!
This misery is made possible by the Constitution. Same chronicle that has deprived Nigerians of good governance is somewhat responsible for the inability of elected leaders to give their best.
Tinubu, like leaders before him may become a victim of failure if constitutional reforms is not carried out. This, in my observation is the ground of acceptance and the counsel of the Elders to the Nation. Where the tree will fall with the best efforts of Tinubu is already pre-determined by our jaundiced constitution!
The third paragraph of the statement handed to me caught my attention and led to the misrepresentation of the invention of the group.
It reads: “We accept the reality of President Ahmed Bola Tinubu’s administration whose legitimacy derives from the judgement of the highest judiciary court in our land on the country’s 2023 national elections.”
The full statement read thus:
Statement By The Patriots
We met as a group of non-partisan individuals whose common purpose is love for our country, Nigeria, and a shared desire to have a united, stable and progressive nation that cares for the welfare of its citizens.
We recalled and paid tribute to our past leaders the late Chief Rotimi Williams, SAN, in whose Chambers we met, and Professor Ben Nwabueze SAN, who passed on last week. They were both great Nigerian patriots, the former was a towering legal luminary; the latter was a giant constitutional scholar who served his country and a number of African countries meritoriously.
We accept the reality of President Ahmed Bola Tinubu’s administration whose legitimacy derives from the judgement of the highest judiciary court in our land on the country’s 2023 national elections.
We are very concerned at the current lamentable state of affairs in our country including the declining sense of national unity, the insecurity of life and property, the increasing poverty and unemployment afflicting our citizens, especially the youths.
Experience over the last 30 years has shown that despite the declared best intentions of our governments, Nigeria’s unity, internal security and economy have continued to deteriorate. In our view, the reason is that our governments have continued to scratch the surface instead of addressing the fundamental issue of the governance system which flows from the constitution of the country.
We believe that President Tinubu’s government has a historic opportunity and responsibility for fixing this fundamental challenge. If he, like the previous governments makes the mistake of avoiding to effect the necessary fundamental changes by bringing in a new people’s constitution, Nigeria will inevitably continue its present dangerous decline! Only a truly Federal Constitution as was agreed by Nigerians founding fathers will give the country a chance of tackling its current challenges effectively.
One thought made very clear in the statement is the need for Tinubu-led administration to focus and commit itself to constitutional reforms.
The last paragraph was unambiguous; it reads:
“We believe that President Tinubu’s government has a historic opportunity and responsibility for fixing this fundamental challenge. If he, like the previous governments, makes the mistake of avoiding to effect of the necessary fundamental changes by bringing in a new people’s constitution, Nigeria will inevitably continue its present dangerous decline! Only a truly Federal Constitution as was agreed by Nigerians’ founding fathers will give the country a chance of tackling its current challenges effectively.”
Dr Bolaji O. Akinyemi is an Apostle and Nation Builder, Convener Apostolic Round Table, ART. Also the BOT Chairman Project Victory Call Initiative, AKA, PVC-Naija. Email: email@example.com 08033041236.