Home Opinion Enough of this politicking: Resign and join PDP – NY Tell Sultan

Enough of this politicking: Resign and join PDP – NY Tell Sultan

by Isiyaku Ahmed
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Sultan of Sokoto

By Bawa Tijjani Maisango

It was Monday and all the characters had assembled in Abuja: They are former President Olusegun Obasanjo, the person that imposed a sick president on Nigerians to avenge their rejection of his infamous Third Term Agenda.

There was the Aare Ona-Kakanfo of Yorubaland, Otunba Gani Adams, the person who as leader of the dreaded O’dua People’s Congress (OPC) during Obasanjo’s administration, superintended the unprecedented mass slaughter of Hausa-Fulani and other Northerners in Lagos in 2000s.

The President of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Reverend Samson Ayokunle, the cleric who recently threatened fire and brimstones over United States delisting of Nigeria from “Countries of Particular Concern” with respect to violations of religious freedom, was ably represented.

There was also the national leader of Pan- Niger Delta Forum, Chief Edwin Clark, the octogenarian who stopped seeing anything positive about anybody and Nigeria since the massive defeat of his political son – Goodluck Jonathan – in 2029 general elections.

Chief Audu Ogbeh, the tired old man who only regained his voice of political activism after he was dropped from President Buhari’s cabinet in 2019, was there.

Another attendee at the event was the Sultan of Sokoto, Sa’ad Abubakar.

From their antecedents, all the characters are unrepentant arm chair critics and political operators but camouflaging as elder statesmen who came together under the auspices of Global Peace Foundation in collaboration with Vision Africa, to lampoon and blackmail Buhari’s administration.

There was nothing surprising about Obasanjo, Clark, Ayokunle or Gani Adams coming together to pursue a self-aggrandizing enterprise. What is appalling to many Nigerians, northerners in particular, was the presence of Sa’ad Abubakar at the event at a time his immediate constituency of Sokoto was on fire.

The Sultan rushed to meet these characters in Abuja barely some days after bandit leader Bello Turji killed over 80 people in one night and roasted more than 23 travellers inside a bus in the most horrifying manner unprecedented in recent history.

Many people thought the Sultan would visit the lone survivor of the Monday Sokoto bus attack, the 30-year-old Malama Shafa’atu who was admitted at the Usman Danfodio Teaching Hospital Sokoto.

Malama Shafa’atu was one of the only two passengers who came out of the bus alive. The other survivor died the same day the gruesome attack happened. 

On Friday, the woman speaking from her sick bed after sustaining burns from the attack, revealed how over 40 travellers were roasted alive by bandits loyal to Turji.

Shafa’atu narrated how she saw her 10-month-old baby, four daughters and her mother gruesomely burnt to death.

Many Nigerians thought the gravity of the calamity and its barbaric nature was enough to activate the Sultan’s human kindness to visit Shafa’atu on her hospital bed. That was not to be. Her circumstances didn’t warrant a sympathy visit by Sa’ad Abubakar. And she died hours after telling the world how bandits opened fire on the moving bus, forcing it to summersault, then engulfed in flames, and how they watched the passengers screaming and burned to ashes.

Even before the Obasanjo- Gani Adams-led event, Sa’ad Abubakar scavenges for any platform, no matter insignificant it is, provided its stock in trade is attacking the Buhari administration and it will give him a microphone to ramble veiled expletives and vomit his encapsulated anger against President Buhari and his administration.

Earlier in March, the Sultan was at the 2021 Obafemi Awolowo Lecture, where he joined other leading opposition voices such as the Nobel Laureate Wole Soyinka, former Commonwealth Secretary-General, Emeka Anyaoku; public intellectual Odia Ofeimun, former Emir of Kano Muhammadu Sanusi II, to blame all the problems of Nigeria since independence on Buhari’s administration.

Even after that, on September 27 to be precise, the Sultan led an army of traditional rulers from across the north to Kaduna to join Northern governors in fighting the Value Added Tax (VAT) war against southern governors.

At the end of the Kaduna meeting, the traditional rulers and the governors, unanimously agreed that the North will retain power in 2023 and VAT collection must remain an exclusive preserve of the federal government.

That show of shame elicited anger from many Nigerians, particularly northerners. They were angry because the meeting took place at a time over 40 local government areas in Katsina, Sokoto and Zamfara were without telecommunication networks, markets, gas stations, among others as security forces battle bandits. Thousands of villagers displaced and hundreds in captivity. There was no word on this.

The Sultan’s hatred for Buhari has been extended to the president’s family. A queer incident happened on November 29, 2019 at the National Mosque Abuja, where, to the surprise of all, including Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, Sultan publicly traded words with the First Lady, Hajiya Aisha Buhari during the Nigerian Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs (NSCIA) General Assembly and National Executive Council (NEC) meeting.

Like many well-intentioned Nigerians did, the First Lady had innocently called for the regulation of social media platforms to checkmate some of its destructive tendencies. She explained that China with about 1.3 billion people had done so. She said many countries in Europe, Asia and America are taking same measures to safeguard public security and forestall anarchy. The Sultan was only short of lampooning the First Lady for advancing that point of view.

That was not all. Speaking at the 2019 fourth quarter meeting of the Nigeria Inter-Religious Council in Abuja., Sa’ad Abubakar warned the federal government against the continued detention of Mr Omoleye Sowore who was arrested for calling for the violent overthrow of the democratic administration through RevolutionNow violent campaign. Sowore was trying to overthrow Buhari’s presidency having failed to secure meaningful vote during the 2019 presidential elections he contested.

From January 23, 2021 when the Yoruba secessionist Sunday Adeyemo (popularly known as Sunday Igboho) led an army of thugs to attack the palace of Sarkin Fulani, Alhaji Salihu Kadiri, in Igangan, razing down the palace and dozen houses, killing at least seven people; through all other atrocities he committed against Hausa-Fulani across the Southwest, up to the time he was fortunately arrested in Benin Republic; there was grave yard silence from the Sultanate. The lives of the northerners killed by Igboho doesn’t matter to the Sultan.

Many northerners won’t forget easily how in February 2018, the Sultan mobilized some leading traditional rulers and governors to boycott the Kaduna Centenary Celebration. The only reason for that action was Sultan’s belief that Kaduna State Governor Nasiru El-Rufa’i would use the opportunity to advance his presidential ambition. He has to fight that tooth and nail to “protect his benefactor” Governor Aminu Waziri Tambuwal, who is a presidential hopeful.

It is now expedient to call all northern patriots to join hands in urging the Sultan, to as a matter of urgency, resign his position as the 20th Sultan of Sokoto, and officially join the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) by obtaining a membership card in his ward. Enough of dragging the Sultanate into the murky waters of politics.

For: Youths Coalition for Protection of Northern Heritage

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