Theoretically speaking, the 2019 general elections averagely conducted by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) which gave the incumbent President Muhammadu Buhari a second term of another four years should not be over celebrated by Nigerians. This is because, overtly viewing, Buhari has the back-up of strong willed, popular and well respected politicians who control the pysche of their supporters even at the expense of the supporters’ wills.
One of the pillars that held the president and his second term ambitions firmly is Asiwau Bola Ahmed Tinubu, national leader of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC). Prior to the elections, the Jagaban Borgu did all in his capacities to campaign vigorously for the President’s victory over his main and major opposition candidate, Alhaji Abubakar Atiku.
As the man in the face of this piece, Asiwau Tinubu is being rumoured in certain segments across the country to be yearning for the coveted number one seat of the Akinola Aguda House in Aso Rock, Abuja. Though, Asiwaju has not formally come out to declare to Nigerians his intention to run for the country’s number one plum job, the activities and groundworks of his admirers and “haters” alike have, over the past few months generated heated controversies and debates in the political space of our country and beyond.
Whilst many are confidently beating their chests that Asiwaju Tinubu would never think of contesting for the presidency, let alone declaring such, some Nigerians in their own best opinions believe that the 3rd democratically elected governor of the Centre of Excellence remains the best man for the job, if he decides to throw in his cap in the presidential battle ring come 2023. This is if the presidency should be zoned to the South West. However, judging by overall public opinion and feelers being scooped from those in the know viz-a-viz close political watchers and strategists, Asiwaju Tinubu stands tall in overcoming all obstacles and “rocks of Gibraltar” that may stand his way during the 2023 polls. Why? You may want to ask;well, one must not conclude on what perhaps is still very inconclusive as yet.However, people should learn to belief in the policy of “never say never” in democracy or anything they do not have personal or direct control over in life.
To be candid, democracy is strictly a game of electoral numbers and the votes and wishes of the majority and not what the minority feels. That is why it is often said that, in democracy, the minority will have their say, but the majority will always have their ways, except it is not under a free and fair electoral contest. If this statement above could be put into consideration, then Tinubu may well emerge as Nigerian’s 16th president/commander-in-chief of the Armed Forces of Nigeria.
Perhaps, if it’s the collective wish of the Nigerian masses, most especially majority of eligible voters of the country that Bola Ahmed Tinubu is their desired candidate for the presidency, so shall it be. Delving into some of the reasons for the anti-Tinubu campaigners which could be deduced internally; some are of the view that Tinubu does not have age on his side while some attribute his “almightiness” to his massive wealth, exposure and socio-political antecedents etc. But the question that we need to as ourselves on this three attributes are, when has age, wealth or political exposure of a man became part of the criteria that qualifies him or her for any electoral position. We usually define democracy as the government of the people, by the people and for the people thereby nature, status and exposure have never been included in this globally popular definition.
If leadership is about the disadvantages of age, wealth and exposure before such person could be considered for public office, then United States President Donald Trump and some very old African leaders, doing so well in their countries today, won’t ever be voted for by their people.
Be that as it may, those who do not want Tinubu to be Nigeria’s president come 2023 may also have their reasons. For instance, they perceive him as not being a perfect man and one with so many “baggages” and it is also a common belief amongst Lagosians that the ex-governor had practically bought half of the state with his stupendous wealth. This group of people also affirm that Tinubu has pitched his “boys” and “girls” in powerful offices from Aso Rock, to the National Assembly,various state government circles and States’ houses of Assembly. Thereby, using these men and women as cronies whenever they are needed. They also attested to the fact that Tinubu could conveniently get whatever he wants by from the presidency by simply snapping his fingers.
Now,with all the afore-mentioned, the Jagaban has more than enough enemies in his political career just like any other politician; but the amazing thing about him is the fact that despite all this flaws and down sides ,the gentleman is still waxing stronger – to the chagrin of his known and perceived enemies.
And for all purpose and intent, i think what Nigerians in general should know is that democracy is all about what the majority wants and not what the minority feels. Let me also say at the risk of stirring the hornet nest that the moral compass and social virtues of any leading political figure are also very key , but those not necessarily the sine qua non largely required to land one as the chief executive of a country; because at the end of the day, the will of the majority of the people and other factors will come into play in determining who becomes the President of the most populous black country on earth.
Let me also quickly submit here that, though, Tinubu must have played several roles in the political past of Nigeria via his membership of the National Democratic Coalition (NADECO) where he fought assiduously with other democratic like-minded progressives for the return of Nigeria to democratic rule before its realization in 1999, he might have a very tedious underground work to do peradventure he wants to contest for the 2023 elections in Nigeria despite his rich wealth of political experience, sagacity and leadership qualities including high level continental exposure, optimal financial muscle (which is an added advantage for his victory) and many more. Tinubu has at several times been compared with the likes of political and democratic legends like the late age Obafemi Awolowo, Owelle Nnamdi Azikiwe, Sir Aminu Kano and the late Bashorun MKO Abiola.
Whichever way the pendulum swings, political watchers and enthusiasts are eagerly awaiting 2023 general elections and just like ex-President Obasanjo would say, I Just Dey Siddon Look. Nigerians are sitting down, looking, gazing and following developments as regards the presidential ambition of Asiwau Bola Ahmed Tinubu come 2023