] ] The mod­esty of Pres­i­dent Jones

Daily Trust - - VIEWS -

The prob­lem with those of us who have no luck ei­ther pre­fixed or suf­fixed to our names is that we know noth­ing about mod­esty. When Tu­face re­based his mar­riage to the mother of some of his chil­dren with a hon­ey­moon trip to Dubai, no­body raised an eye­brow. Ex­cept of course, those of us who missed the SUV aka Jeep that Gover­nor Ak­pabio pre­sented along with the re­turn ticket for the 28 very lucky cit­i­zens who went to wit­ness the hon­ey­moon in Dubai. Grum­blers were aptly de­scribed as med­dle­some in­ter­lop­ers. One writer asked me to de­clare my affin­ity with Akwa Ibom to gauge my ask­ing rights the Raji Fashola is query­ing the right for the free­dom of in­for­ma­tion re­quest on ed­u­ca­tion fund­ing in La­gos.

I am shocked that no­body asked me to go to Oba­jana Junc­tion or ask to see the shop­ping list of my ac­ci­dent-prone gover­nor in­stead of pok­ing my nose in other people’s af­fairs. They all know that there are no back roads to my part of Kogi a state noted for bathing hand­some faces with raw acid with­out reper­cus­sion.

Here’s my ex­cuse for say­ing noth­ing about events in Lokoja and be­yond, the last time I looked at the DMO web­site; com­pared to Akwa Ibom, Kogi’s debts is not be­yond re­demp­tion. Ex­cept Dan­gote stops pay­ing taxes. Gover­nor Wada knows that sur­viv­ing road ac­ci­dents can­not be com­pared with plane crashes. He is a pi­lot, and so, he should be com­mended for not in­dulging in his pas­sion within the state. Of course, not hav­ing a jet­set gover­nor de­nies you of your brag­ging rights in the comity of states, but small price to pay for turn­ing the volatile state into an­other Taraba.

So, I pre­tended not to see pres­i­den­tial dreamer, Atiku Abubakar ship­ping his friends to Dubai for his son’s wed­ding. Even for a Fu­lani man, all roads do not safely lead to Jada, when you do not have the links to put boots and tanks on ev­ery stretch of the road leading there. That could hap­pen if you were not try­ing to push Pres­i­dent Jones from his com­fort­able chair in Has­sle Rock. Go and drink pep­per-soup, all you who ques­tion Atiku’s Atiku, the only grouse I have is that some­how, my name was miss­ing on the guest list.

If any­one thinks that what Atiku did was un­pa­tri­otic, then they are still us­ing the old map. Pres­i­dent Jones uses the new GPS. Weeks ear­lier, he closed the Na­tional Con­fer­ence, sorry, I meant he moved it to Otuoke, in his ca­pac­ity as Presido. Af­ter all, don’t we all live in Chike Obi’s coun­try where 16 votes is more than 19? Are we not proud cit­i­zens of a coun­try in which a state budget was pre­sented and passed in one day? Have we not wit­nessed the mace of the Ir­ra­tional As­sem­bly taken to the shrine of Og­bunike for safe keep­ing? Have state as­sem­blies not met un­der the mango tree and passed laws with less than two-thirds of mem­bers in at­ten­dance? What lau­rel is there in the Guin­ness Book of Ab­sur­dity that our no­ble coun­try has not clinched?

We have wit­nessed a head of state sur­ren­der the keys of a pres­i­den­tial jet to his son to ferry party go­ers and ex­pended na­tional budget to grief the na­tional loss. Then a pres­i­den­tial aide used a he­li­copter as kabu-kabu for his fa­ther’s burial and again crashed it and kept his job. I can cope with any­thing, but hypocrisy is bit­ter than melted chloro­quine on my tongue.

This is why I re­fused to pay at­ten­tion to those who showed pic­tures of the gold-plated phones al­legedly dis­trib­uted at Pres­i­dent Jones’ daugh­ter’s wed­ding and linked it to the cel­e­brated di­a­mond phones be­ing made by a Dubai de­signer. It is hypocrisy of the high­est or­der. In re­cent past, vice pres­i­dent Nnamdi dis­trib­uted iPhones to guests at his daugh­ter’s wed­ding. That was long be­fore the iPhone com­bined the func­tions of phones with of­fice and video. I am in­clined to com­mend the mod­esty of my pres­i­dent for not cre­at­ing and nam­ing a state af­ter his daugh­ter and mak­ing the hus­band the gover­nor be­fore or­der­ing the Ir­ra­tional As­sem­bly to gazette it. This shows that all things said, this pres­i­dent is a mod­est ruler of a paci­fist na­tion. Af­ter all, petrol, our cash cow be­longs to Nai­jaDeltans and the re­sources thereof, the people and all who live in it.

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