How Are The Mighty Fallen
A cabal that has been in existence and in power since the 1980’s when he was still at University? This does not make sense. He was a powerful Chief vof Staff but he was far from being head of the cabal or being de facto President. That much I can assure you.
Insults mean nothing to me. They only fuel my resolve and strengthen my determination. They are like water off a duck’s back and neither can they deter me from speaking my mind on any pressing or burning issue no matter how unpopular my position may be.
Those that do not have the prescence of mind or the discipline to read beyond three lines or that are so filled with hate and blighted by ignorance that it has beclouded their better judgement should not bother attempting to read this contribution.
For those that are interested in knowing the truth and in actually learning something about a man that was as maligned, misrepresented and misunderstood as I have been over the years should please go ahead and do me the honor of reading it. Whichever way it takes absolutely nothing from me.
Yesterday I paid tribute to my friend and brother Mallam Abba Kyari, the former Chief of Staff to President Muhammadu Buhari, who passed on after being diagnosed with Covid 19 on Friday 17th April 2020.
The tweet reads as follows:
“I lost a friend of 40 years. We were at Cambridge together. We worked in my fathers law firm together. We remained close throughout right up until the end even though we disagreed politically. ABBA was a good man. A man of honor and a loyal friend. May his soul rest in peace”.
Sadly it appears that some have a problem with my tribute and have lost all sense of decency and humanity.
Someone DIED and you are now suggesting that it is wrong for those of us that knew him better than you to say a good word about him? This is an accomplished man who was a lawyer, a banker, a journalist, a businessman and a loyal friend to many many years before he even joined Government in 2015. This is a man with children, a wife, an extended family and many dependants that he left behind.
This is a man that has been a blessing to his community and that has been housing, feeding and paying for the education of thousands of students at Maiduguri University and offering scholarships to so many young people since 2001.
All this yet you say that those of us that knew him must not mourn him. Some even went as far as to ask how dare I say he was a “good man” forgetting that if he had been anything less I would have been the first to expose and attack him.
I forgive those that have attacked me for their ignorance and I stand by my words. If they do not like those words they can simply go and jump in the lagoon. They like me when I attack Government but they hate me when I say one good thing about a Government official who I have known for over forty years? What a joke!
Yet the truth is that I do not care one way or the other and neither do I seek anyone’s approval or validation. I will attack anoyone that I believe has done wrong, whether in the ranks of the Government or the opposition, and I will commend those that I believe have done their best in either of the two.
The truth is that when it comes to the gathering of information and acquisition of knowledge and what is really going on behind closed doors in this country I know far more than virtually all of my traducers because I have access to people and places that most of them can only dream about.
Yet even if I didn’t, common decency alone should constrain them to at least let those of us that have a certain degree of decency and humanity left in our persona to express our condolences in peace and not choose our words for us or be subjected to vulgar abuse, intolerable rantings and long and uncontrollable diatribes from a clearly diseased mind.
To you I say the following. If you don’t like my views about Kyari you can simply go to hell. I do not give a fig. I would however advise you to fear God and know that even He does not take pleasure in the death of those He created and only He can judge each and every one of us.
Yet for the record let us look at a few of the facts.
A former Head of State would have been put under house arrest in 2018, a former Chief of Army Staff and Minister of Defence would have been arrested in 2018, a former National Security Advisor and a well known online publisher would have still been in detention today and many MORE people would have been detained and killed had it not been for the efforts and moderating influence of this man whose untimely death some irresponsible people are celebrating today.
I know all this and about each case because I was involved. Once that man gave his word on any issue he always honored it to the point that even the reactionaries and hardliners in the Government he served wanted to discredit him, implicate him, get rid of him and even kill him.
Let me give you two examples. He promised the Governors of the East that he would get adequate funding for Enugu Airport and he did.
He also promised to ensure that good progress would be made on the second Niger bridge and it was. I can tell you that had it not been for his efforts and the efforts of particularly Governor Umahi of Ebonyi and the Governor Ugwanyi of Enugu it would have been next to impossible to get adequate funding for the two.
I can also tell you that when the police, with elements of the military, attacked and killed IPOB youths and literally burnt down half of Orifite in Anambra state, the hometown of my friend and IPOB lawyer, Mr. Ifeanyi Ejiofor, Abba, in collaboration with Umahi and Ugwanyi, was instrumental in putting a stop to it.
I know because I was involved and I asked them all to intervene. On that occassion they saved lives and I can bear witness to that. So can Ejiofor.
There is so much more that I could add but I will go no further for now because it was not Abba’s desire or intention to be praised or publicly acknowledged for his good deeds. He neither craved public validation or acclaim.
People forget that the buck for the things the Federal Government does not stop at the desk of the President’s Chief of Staff but at the desk of the President. He takes full credit for the good things and he must also take the full blame for the bad .
Abba was merely an official albeit a very senior and influential one: he was not the leader of the cabal or the de facto President that many claimed that he was.
Despite that he was quite happy to be labelled as this Government’s “Dark Angel” and “fall guy”, even though both tags were totally inaccurate and inappropriate 0 He was also quite prepared to take the blame for every evil under the sun simply because he was deeply loyal to the President.
Nevermind that much of the time he was fighting off those in the Government who hated his guts and who saw him as a stumbling block to gaining unmerited favour with the President or to their thieving ways.
I know every single one of them and at the appropriate time I will expose them for what they are. Abba was far better than them: far more wholesome and far more decent. He was a gentleman who though, in my view, was on the wrong side of the political divide, remained a gentleman nevertheless.
I found it inexplicable and difficult to accept that a man that was as sophisticated, cosmopolitan, enlightened and intelligent as ABBA was could work for a Government and be Chief of Staff in a Presidency that was the most sectional and religiously biased in the history of Nigeria and I often told him this. We had many heated discussions and lively debates on this and other issues.
His defence was that he believed in Buhari and that he chose to be loyal to him and I respected that. He often reminded me of the days in which I was at the Villa when I stood by President Olusegun Obasanjo no matter what.
He said that even though he was with Buhari throughout that time and was opposed to Obasano we still remained friends and that we ought to remain friends now that the tables had turned and that he and his principal were in power.
This was sound logic and it made sense. Only a fool does not appreciate the fact that true friendship transcends politics and that you take your friends warts and all even when, in your view, they may have made the wrong political choices.
He felt I that I made the wrong choice and chose the wrong path just as I felt that he did but we never for one moment felt that our friendship should or would end because of that. After all we were not just friends but we were brothers.
I have been in the frontline of the opposition and resistance since 2015 and no-one has fought or risked as much against this Government as I have done. I have been detained, maligned, insulted, subjected to psychological torture, misrepresented, falsely and wrongly accused, financially crippled and worse of all I have lost some members of my family and friends because of them.
They have taken literally everything from me and have destroyed the country that I have always loved and seen as my own. All of this I have suffered without ever complaining or lamenting leaving my fate and that of my family and loved ones to God.
I have nothing to gain and no reason to sugar-coat anyone in the Buhari administration but let me tell you loudly and clearly that now that the man you all loved to hate and malign has gone you will see the true meaning of tyranny and a totalitarian government because we will no longer have a moderate to run to when innocent men and women are being incarcerated, killed or tormented.
We will no longer have anyone to complain to about the excesses and sheer brutality of some of the security and intelligence officials. We will no longer have someone to run to when terrible things are being done that even the President is not aware of.
Continue to celebrate his death because you are ignorant and uninformed. When the real monster arrives and rises up that is when your eyes will clear and you will wish that the one you hate was still alive and in power.
Permit me to conclude this contribution with the following. Canelo Gypsy King, one of my numerous young friends on Facebook wrote the following to me after watching my interview on AIT about ABBA.
He was obviously very upset by my generous and charitable words about a man who he perceived as being pure evil and who he believed ought to have been categorised as an enemy of humanity and the tormentor-in chief of the Nigerian people. He wrote,
“When Boko Haram members were killing men and children in thousands, raping women in large proportions. Killing and shooting Biafra citizens, Shiites members and those who oppose his Government, did Abba Kyari speak up?
Did he call for the service chiefs to resign? Did he visit those who died? When Buhari deliberately and intentionally borrowed predatory loans from the Foreign nations to further plunge Nigerian into insurmountable debts? Did Abba speak up? How about the billions of Naira that were allocated to upgrade Aso rock Clinic that went Missing, did he speak up?
When Buhari failed to address the Nation every month for years, Did Abba speak up? Did he ever speak up when the nation was financially pillaged by these evil Government officials?
Do you know how many thousands of Nigerians are dying every month due to the wicked and heartless intentions of these beasts and Frankenstein monsters? Even, if he did not speak up, did he resign? Truth to be told whatever a man sows he shall reap”.
My response to him was as follows.
“If only you knew how many lives he saved. If only you knew how he at least attempted to build bridges between Christians and Muslims and between northerners and southerners behind closed doors.
If only you knew how hard he fought to ensure that the war against terror was properly waged. If only you knew the forces that opposed his moderate stand from within.
If only you knew how much he was hated by some very key members of the Buhari administration who envied him and who felt that had it not been for him they could have pillaged the treasury far more than they were already doing and created even more enemies for the President than he already had.
If only you knew that most of the rubbish being written in the media about him was being sponsored and spread to a gullible public by key members of the Buhari administrstion who were trying to discredit him and get the Presideht to fire him.
Simply put had it not been for him many more lives would have been lost in the war against terror and many more people would have been killed by Boko Haram and the Fulani herdsmen.
Some say he was the leader of the cabal. This is a cabal in which seasoned and skillful old war horses and elderly and ancient northern political veterans and warriors like Mamman Daura, Zangon Daura, Mahmoud Tukur, Ismaila Isa Funtua, Lawal Daura, Baba Gana Kingibe and many others that were far older and more experienced than him are members of?
A cabal that has been in existence and in power since the 1980’s when he was still at University? This does not make sense. He was a powerful Chief of Staff but he was far from being head of the cabal or being de facto President. That much I can assure you.
If it had been any different many of those that were still in office at the time of his death would not have been there anymore because he would have fired them long ago.
God alone sees the heart and knows who is who. Let Him be the judge and let Him call each and every one of us to account for our deeds and misdeeds.
It is not for me or anyone else to judge Kyari and it is not for anyone else to judge me or to judge you. The only thing that is certain is the following: for our good deeds we shall be rewarded in the afterlife and for our bad ones we shall suffer. That applies to us all and as the Bible says, ‘let he that is free of sin throw the first stone’ “.
For my friend and adversary Abba I only have this to say,
“Tell it not in Gath, proclaim it not in the streets of Ashkelon, lest the daughters of the Philistines be glad, lest the daughters of the uncircumcised rejoice…..How are the mighty fallen in the midst of the battle! How are the mighty fallen and the weapons of war perished!” (2 Samuel 1 20:24).
You served your nation and your principal to the best of your ability and I am proud of the dignity and nobility you displayed throughout your life.
Rest in peace my brother and pray for Nigeria and those of us you left behind.
So, Femi knows what was REALLY going on in this country? ACCESS to persons who were troubling us was not a challenge to him. He was a fraternal member of the shrine of the gods of our hardship, yet FFK posed to be the voice of the masses at sunrise to the elites he had dinner with at sun set.
Dr Bolaji O. Akinyemi
Shocking seems to be the eulogy of unbelievable tributes that greeted the exit of the man Abba Kyari. One of which is the confirmation of President Muhammadu Buhari on the role of Abba Kyari in his Government whom he simply described as, “the best of us”. With this, the President laid to rest every insinuation regarding who was in charge of his regime by this truth revealed. Abba by this Presidential ascent was the ugly mind, terrible hands and bad face of Buhari administration.
Though Onyema was the first to wave the olive branch that triggered the controversies that are trailing a man who should have been left to rest in peace, the Minister had sought to drive away the twin evil flies of nepotism and bigotry that perched on the man while he was alive. He presented to us a dead liberal Muslim, who was his best man when he wedded his wife of Ido-ani descent in a Catholic church in Owo of Yoruba land, South West Nigeria. Much as Onyema tried, he however didn’t succeed in driving away these twin evil flies; they were lowered with Kyari into his grave.
Several tributes were of interest. While Onyema’s served as an attempt to paint the ugly, good, Simeon Kolawole’s is of course a bad company of and ugly life. While the quietness of Onyema can easily be forgotten, who should forgive a man who lives by the pen for refusing to furnish the life of a dear friend with beautiful line on his very ugly life but chose to write a living epistle of a dead man.
I need not bother you with all who have expressed their rights for or against in their defence of Abba Kyari, neither do I need to struggle at convincing you about the life and times of Abba Kyari, this has been done in what I termed, Tunde Odesola’s Monday kill, published in The Punch Newspaper of Monday 20th April 2020, under the title: The reign of Abba Kyari.
My preoccupation in this communication is to expose the Judas Iscariot who has been calling the attention of the Nigerian Christians to the Islamisation Agenda of Abba Kyari controlled Government with 30 silver pence in his pocket. Heir apparent of a traitor lineage who has been feeding fat at Abba’s kitchen at the expense of the Yoruba nation like his father did at the expense of our leader, the Sage, late Chief Obafemi Awolowo, and ofcourse the Yoruba nation, all these Femi did under the guise of standing with us in defence of our common heritage. What a DNA!
Femi said of Abba Kyari, “I have lost a friend of forty years, a man of honour, a good man, a loyal friend. We attended Cambridge together, and worked at my father’s law firm. We remained very close till his last moment”. But Femi’s friend was a foe of the ordinary Nigerian. So his loss was their gain; his mourning was our morning; the death of his friend a new day for us. His man of honour stripped us naked of honour as a people. Under his administration, Boko Haram has the edge over the rest of us, killing at will. And Fulani herdsmen must have our ancestral land without resistance or we pay with our lives, according to Femi’s name sake, surnamed Adesina. Abba was a good man to Femi, but he was bad to the middle belt, South West, South East, and South South, whose inheritances must be “RUGALISED” as a conquered territory of those who are born only to rule the rest of us. He showed us his fraternal friendship of forty years to reveal who he truly is: a spy. As the English adage say, show me your friend and I will show you who you here. Now we know who Femi is; a dancing leaf on the surface of our water, whose drummer was Kyari beneath the river.
This spy of the political elites among the commoners was so much ‘in love’ with us that we never had a clue of his espionage mission until the death of his paymaster. The loss of his next cheque must have so gotten to him that his emotions got the better of his reasoning that the cat escaped from his bag.
How come he got away with being APC mole in PDP camp? How come the pay piper of Kyari played the discordant tunes of Goodluck Ebele Jonathan campaign organisation and everyone danced his beat of avoidable electoral defeat.
Femi Fani Kayode is a man with the mastery of words, eloquent in speech, witty and weighty. You can hardly match him in the craft of his crafty trade of Communication. Verbal or written, Femi is a man to fear for his words pierces like a dart. But the charms of words is in the strength of character that utters or authors them. Former President Obasanjo once described Femi as a mouth in service of his stomach. How right Baba Iyabo is.
Femi had all it takes to lead Atiku/Obi Media Team during the last election. Except character. In a moment of his own anger over his consistent rejection to be admitted into the Team, was ‘because of a window that was opened to him at the Presidency’. Femi chose the window in preference to the door of the Villa that was opened to him, thus confirming the words of Jesus, that he that enters not by the door is a thief and a robber. Femi shunned the dignity of the doorway to climb in through the window just to keep his nefarious activities concealed. What a shame!
Femi stood against “Buhari”. For Buhari, what an award winning Nollywood Script: The Spy Who Fooled Us. He delivered his lines with skills and mastery to become the unofficial spokesman of our collective opposition against Buhari’s Government. While Femi’s vituperations excites us, it put paid to opposition agitations against this very evil administration and gave them nothing to worry about. He won our confidence and therefore became a rallying point of all who were aggrieved with the manhandling of Nigerians and mismanagement of our resources. Visit to his tweeter handle to know what the belly was saying to the mouth was a daily duty by concerned Nigerians. Femi became the toast of the Ndigbo, a Masquerade dressed in the Villa danced to the admiration of the Igbos at home and in diaspora, Nnamdi Kanu’s arms were opened to him, so, Kyari’s confidant became Kanu’s compatriot in the agitation of Biafran for self determination. This spy fooled all.
Northern Nigerian Christians saw hope in an “Esua” who for today’s pot of pottage has sold tomorrow’s greatness.
Except for the Spirit of God, the elect would have been deceived! I would have become a protege of a mad mentor whose belly is his God. Enormous pressure were mounted on me on the need to meet Femi, but not once did I have a release in my spirit. Femi just doesn’t add up! How can a man with such contentious words be so lightly dealt with by this Government with his bad case with EFCC? How come the Judge is just not available to sit on his case? How come his security details is among the best for anyone without appointment with this Government? How come every looter in Buhari’s trap are quite, behaving and cooperating with Kyari’s controlled administration, except Femi Fani Kayode? How come Femi is the only ‘bush meat’ who seems not to be worried about the hunter and his dane gun?
FFK, his undaunted by the shock of the people on the revelation of his person and the flowing streams of anger that greeted his tribute, he has a rejoinder, read an extract, ” the truth is that when it comes to the gathering of information and acquisition of knowledge and what is REALLY going on behind closed doors on this country I know far more than virtually all of my traducers because l have ACCESS to people and places that most of them can only dream about”. What a revelation.
So, Femi knows what was REALLY going on in this country? ACCESS to persons who were troubling us was not a challenge to him. He was a fraternal member of the shrine of the gods of our hardship, yet FFK posed to be the voice of the masses at sunrise to the elites he had dinner with at sun set.
Femi omo Fani Kayode “ti di ilekun to rinu, to ri ode”. Femi the son of Fani Kayode has become a door, seeing both inside and outside of the house. A dual personality with conflicting ideology. “Ohun ni pe ole ko wa ja, o hun na ni pe oloko kowa mu”, he is the informant of the thieves to come and steal, who also alerts the owner to the arrival of the bandits. What a contradiction to pride in!
Lesson learnt: our struggle for a better and greater Nigeria must not be politicised. Our ideology for a restructured federation cannot be championed by politicians. Our drive for generational shift in leadership will never happen left to PDP or APC. We must take our destiny in our hands and consolidate our aggregated 3rd force movements across party divide to throw up men with values needed for leadership in this season of our nation.
The folly of the wise is in their failure to understand that God is the all and only wise one, from him all wisdom streams. My prayer for Femi is same as David did in the day it became known that Ahitophel was with Absalom. “Oh Lord, he said, turn the counsel of Ahitophel to foolishness.” May same be the fate of Femi Fani Kayode.
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She shook the hands of her mighty mind
at the world
she splayed and splashed the colors of her
loving on every space
sang and shouted her dreams till
her voice turned hoarse
a kind angel heard her
and sent her a horse….
she is mounting it now
preparing to ride into the mountains
in search of sympathetic sunrises,
still singing, still hoping
The poem above is written in response to Boomie Bol in https://boomiebol.wordpress.com/2020/03/19/what-happened/
Our moribund hospitals
our sloppy services,
and social stasis speak
of brooms that were not for sweeping,
of promises and pledges that were not for keeping,
they scream of scheming, skimming and creaming and of
of change conceived as clean snitching
DEALING WITH COVID19 AS A NIGERIAN – REALITY CHECK
- Dike Chukwumerije
My country reminds me of Samson, on the morning after Delilah had shaved his hair, being woken up from sleep with the cries of his enemies at the gate and rushing out thinking he was still possessed of his old strength, of his capacity to engage and defeat a determined foe. This is what my country reminds me of – a man suffering a great delusion about his own capacity at a critical time.
Me? My only real consolation in all this is in the number of people who seem able to recover from this virus on their own. Or who it is suspected contract it and remain asymptomatic from start to finish. This is what comforts me, the possibility of some sort of emergent immunity. And all the indications that a treatment or vaccine may soon be found abroad. These are things that give me hope that this is not the wind that will reveal the fowl’s nyash. But it also makes me sad because this particular fowl may afterwards still not understand how near the miss truly was.
I tell you.
Wash your hands regularly? 55 million Nigerians have no access to clean water. Practice Social Distancing? 50% of Nigerians live in slums, bachas, face-me-i-face-yous. Self-isolate for 2 weeks? We are the extreme poverty capital of the world. Over 87 million Nigerians live in it. That is the type of poverty that if you don’t hustle today, you don’t eat today. It is literally death by starvation versus death by infection. Test, test, test for the virus? In the 4 weeks since we had our first case, we’ve been able to do under 200 tests. In the same period, South Africa has done over 15000 tests. If someone abroad does not help us invent a cheap rapid diagnostic test for covid19 sharp and sharp and, very kindly, donate it to us in large numbers sharp sharp, we will continue to test at super snail speed using a process that will be heavily influenced by the routine ‘man know man’.
I tell you.
Treat worst cases in Intensive Care? Which Intensive Care? 16 years ago, WHO told us we had 5 hospital bed spaces (and by this they meant everything from public to private, from outpatient to intensive care) for every 10,000 Nigerians. Since then we have elected PDP, then APC. We have elected Christian then Muslim. We have elected Northerner then Southerner. We have elected Hausa, Igbo, Yoruba. Today? Nnamdi Azikiwe University Teaching Hospital has 4 single beds in Intensive Care – with nothing else apparently in the room. Tell me? How do you ramp up what does not exist?
This degeneration of systemic capacity is what we have consistently voted for for 16 years. This deterioration of collective ability is what our young men and women mobilize themselves into thuggish gangs on election day to defend. Because when you shout ‘vote for capacity and merit’ someone will come and start explaining to you why it is the turn of this clan or this village or this region or this tribe or this religion to chop building material. And now that owu is threatening to blow, we are looking for concrete shelter to hide inside? My people, that concrete shelter does not exist. Because we used the concrete to build stomach infrastructure in by-gone elections.
So, let us for a second stop pretending we can ‘handle this’. The horse bolted out of the stable years ago. In fact, it has reverted back to a wild horse in the bush and has spawned generations of wild horse children who now make an expert living from locating where we store materials for building stable doors and devouring them, so that no horse may ever be domesticated ever again. You understand? That if covid19 does not decimate us in this country it will not be because ‘we took steps’, commendable as those steps are, it would be because the virus itself turned out not to be as lethal as we feared in our worst nightmares.
And I fear that if that fact is not well articulated and understood the opportunity presented by this crisis – to truly change the way we approach politics and governance in this country, to truly realize that these things impact on lives, not in their tens or thousands, but in their millions and billions – will be lost. And we will continue to sow the seeds of tribalism, mediocrity, and nepotism, thinking that when it counts ‘las las’ we will rise to the occasion. Until that fateful day when Samson wakes up and runs outside to fight a truly lethal foe with a shining bald head…Dikeogu. C
One battle won! Kudos! Opens a new theatre and a fresh battle front though – one touching on the child directly and the other in an indirect manner. The child beggar must be returned to school. Some serious work on mapping – schools and beneficiary mapping is therefore necessary. We need you to write Op-Eds to this end. Set your PhD and Masters students on this. Child centricity is the key. So we have a largely supply side driven primary response that needs to be pushed. Una be agenda pushers naa! We need strong compulsive stories, powerful narratives with all the spin, frame, fact based emotional appeal and advocacy inducement that you can garner and fire.
Next is to call attention to the need for care and attention for adult beggars in the short and medium terms. Remember the SDGs, remember leave no one behind, remember inclusivity! What are the response options? Suggest some – adapted skills training, work for food, public work schemes, social safety net programmes, minimal functional literacy. Dig into your ideas brainstorm! Let us throw out the ideas. Let them say that the ideas are not workable. Unless the beggars are equipped to gain a living in other ways , they will be back on the street and the children with them. Politicians pronounce, policy makers and civil servants pounce to implement without adequate reflection save for considerations of pecuniary gains (prebandalism at its best) and the result is pain and waste. Let us save our country from waste for the sake of our children.