…Outside The Party Structure
The question of Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s political fitness to withstand the heat from the cabal and enemies within as the bid for presidential ticket tightens up has become a national debate among pundits.
In the last few weeks, Asiwaju has been under intense political pressure and distractions from within and outside the party, especially from some one-time core loyalists and beneficiaries.
It is no longer news that there are cabals who are plotting to ensure that Asiwaju will not get the party ticket to contest for 2023 presidency and that these cabals hell-bent to ensure that the party structure adopts a style of primary that will deny Asiwaju any advantage over their preferred loyalist who will keep them in power, even after President Buhari’s term.
Summarily, there is a big gang up against Asiwaju from all fronts. However, Asiwaju, as maintained by those who are close to him and who understands his political calculation is not a man that can be shocked by betrayal or disappointment. All the weaknesses, shortfalls and imperfections of his boys have been presumed many years before they come to pass and he’s made an alternative route out of the mess they may put him into. Many of his loyalists who have pitched tent against him before and are now back with him have all confessed that Asiwaju is a phenomenon that will take more than the cabal to get him to his knees.
As the possibility of the February convention looks bleak, Asiwaju has gotten the grip of so many other sectors beyond party loyalists and common plots within the party. Asiwaju has got a grip on all the influencers of the electoral outcome.
The fraternity of billionaires whose investments are in Lagos State has rallied support for Tinubu, to occupy the exalted seat of the presidency in 2023.
These indigenous investors see Tinubu as a bridge builder across regional, ethnic and religious lines that is capable of uniting the country. They have identified him as an exceptional manager of resources and a seasoned administrator who can safeguard their investments with business-healthy policies at the national level. One of these investors confided in City People that the businessmen of, we are convinced that the nation needs him in the next dispensation.
According to the source “It is only reasonable to consider a candidate who has the track record of creating enabling environment for big businesses to thrive and who have built a sustainable structure for over 20 years and the successive government still finds it flexible enough to fit into and maintain the pace of growth. “No businessman with his business interest in mind would consider any other candidate aside Tinubu. Especially when the opponent seems to be one of his products”.
This means that Asiwaju has won the voting bloc of billionaires. One down… more to go.
Asiwaju must have understood the principle of casting bread in the water and reaping in multiple folds after many days. One thing no one can take away from Asiwaju is his selfless gesture of building people. Aside from the very many key political office holders who are known to be Asiwaju’s boys today, most of the new generation of First Class Royal fathers used to be Asiwaju aide-de-camp (ADC). These are facts that can be obtained at the push of the google button. Recently, an old photo of the new Oniru standing behind Asiwaju as a police officer attached to him was posted online and most social media users were shocked.
As a police officer, he served as ADC to Tinubu who was governor of Lagos from 1999 to 2007. Lawal retired voluntarily in 2008 as a superintendent of police.
A year after, he was appointed as senior special assistant on special projects by Babatunde Fashola, then governor of the state.
He was also the coordinator of the agriculture-based youth empowerment scheme (Agric-YES). He was first appointed commissioner for agriculture and cooperatives in 2011.
In 2015, he was again appointed Commissioner of Housing by Akinkunmi Ambode, then governor of the state. He eventually became Oniru in 2020.
One of his personal assistants Prince Saheed Ademola Elegushi was also installed king through the influence of Bola Tinubu. Oba Saheed Ademola Elegushi was born to the family of late Oba Yekini Adeniyi Elegushi, the Elegushi Royal Family of Ikateland. All of Asiwaju’s beneficiaries cut across tribes and regions. Back in 2015, the PDP-led government in the bid to decapitate the influence of the APC, deployed a new set of Police Commissioners, ACPs, and DCPs to Lagos just a couple of weeks before elections. Eventually, it turned out that about 50 percent of the newly deployed police officers are in Asiwaju’s debt.
Further investigation revealed that Tinubu had at one time or the other helped them through tough times, either financially or morally. Asiwaju has been so benevolent that he has an annual target of a capacity building plan. Those who have benefited from his selfless gesture are now holding key positions and, if they will not follow his dictates, they surely will not also allow traducers to take advantage of him in any way.
Beyond his networks in the Nigeria Police and royal fathers, Asiwaju surrounds himself with the secular intelligentsia, the experts, scholars and learned fellows. He builds the people around him to fit into contemporary clime at all times. During one of Asiwaju’s annual colloquium, renowned Nobel Laureate, Prof Wole Soyinka who chaired the event, spoke about how Asiwaju, during the military junta, mobilized funds for new business initiatives that can sustain the struggle for democracy. He narrated how Asiwaju told them how to start rice farming abroad and be feeding Nigeria. According to Prof. Soyinka Asiwaju volunteered to take the proposal to Taiwan, and Prof was tasked to write the letter. These are the class of people that cannot be bamboozled with empty promises. They analyze all stated intentions and see through the lies. These people cannot be dictated to, on electoral matters, and most of all, these are Asiwaju’s friends.
One of Asiwaju’s core strengths is his closely knitted relationship with religious leaders. He doesn’t joke with them and they don’t joke with him. As he meets with Sheiks, Ulamas, and Imams, so he’s meeting with Pastors, Prophets, Bishops and Primates across the country. Asiwaju is not doing this because of his ambition, he has made it compulsory for himself to see religious leaders as part of his responsibility. Aside from the fact that he allows his wife, Yeye Oluremi Tinubu to operate in the capacity of a Pastor at the Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG), his respect for all religious leaders has no measure.
Tunde Bakare, a known political critic and general overseer of a Lagos based Latter Rain Assembly Church had, during one of his sermons, extolled the southwest leaders and challenge any advised traducers not to undermine the only Yoruba leader who can stand the might of the northern oligarchy.
Will it shock you to say Asiwaju has a strong support base of members of other parties other than PDP? Of all the registered political parties. Asiwaju, who is known only to make friends and not enemy has been playing a fatherly role in grooming political parties which are registered to field candidates. When push comes to shove, these political parties will come in handy in the alignment of a coalition to withstand any force. In all honesty, Asiwaju has done his homework and has done it diligently.
In all of these, it is crystal clear that Asiwaju has cleaned out all other factors that influence elections beyond party politics.