Home Opinion Babachir David Lawal: Between a Sicilian message and a Peruvian necktie

Babachir David Lawal: Between a Sicilian message and a Peruvian necktie

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Ahmed Yahaya – Joe

Perhaps the next political opposition will be very vibrant

 B.D. (as he would want to refer to himself) will certainly be a major player in it. I have often wondered why he has never been indicted for anti-party activities within the All Progressives Congress (APC)?

The same could be wondered of Governor Nyesom Wike and his fellow travelers in the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) collectively known as G-5.

As far as I am concerned those two blocs of political bulldozers are poised to be the arrowheads of what OBJ as far back as 2018 described as the “Third Force”.

If one is to critically examine the Peter Obi phenomenon with which B.D. and G-5 are associated it goes without saying it is a culmination of what OBJ also enunciated from the Abeokuta hilltop, “If neither APC nor PDP is a worthy horse to ride to lead Nigeria at this crucial and critical time, what then do we do?

Remember Farooq Kperogi, an Associate Professor at the Kennesaw State University, Georgia, United States, calls it a cruel Hobson’s choice; it’s like a choice between six and half a dozen, between evil and evil. Any selection or deflection would be a distinction without a difference.”

In my humble assessment, the candidate to beat remains Bola Ahmed Tinubu because I align myself with Governor Charles Soludo’s position that Obi-diets have eroded Atiku Abubakar’s main support base. This is not to say one should entirely dismiss the chances of the former VP due to the internal dynamics within the ruling APC itself.

 On one hand, there is B.D. openly canvassing for Peter Obi while still, an active APC member and on the other have none of the other rivals of Tinubu for the APC flag during the primaries have openly joined him on the campaign trail with the notable exception of Senate President Ahmad Lawan.

The Waziri will no doubt be the chief beneficiary of the deepening fault lines within the ruling party. Internal damage is often more devastating than external any external threat.

Permit me to digress;

“Sometime in 1960, two ministers and top leaders of the defunct Northern People’s Congress, NPC, the Magajin Garin Kano, Alhaji Inuwa Wada, and Ibrahim Musa Gashash, visited the Emir’s Palace, Kano to pay homage to the emir, Sir Muhammadu Sanusi.  They were told the Emir had traveled to his riverside castle in Wudil, some 40 kilometers away from the ancient city.

Out of respect, the duo decided to travel to Wudil to greet the Emir. At Wudil, the Emir kept them waiting for over an hour. When they asked the palace aides who the Emir was meeting with, they said it was P.A. David, a prominent colonial-era contractor, and businessman.

So just because of David, “angry Musa Gashash flared up,” the Emir is keeping us waiting, despite the fact that we are ministers? I can’t take this! Inuwa, you may wish to stay since you are a title holder. As for me, I will never pay homage to the Emir again.”

Articles soon began appearing in Gaskiya Ta Fi Kwabo (Hausa newspaper) that Emir Sanusi was autocratic, and dictatorial, revoked ownership of lands, squandered treasury, misused cattle tax, and siphoned money meant for the establishment of the Bompai Industrial Area, among other allegations.”

The foregoing account was written by the custodian of contemporary Kano history, Jaafar Jaafar in April 2017 as a form of advisory entitled, A Word for Emir Sanusi. It was written three years before the monarch was dethroned in March 2020.

I have never heard of any prominent APC member including its national chairman challenging or calling B.D. to order over his current grandstanding against Tinubu. The reason is obvious – nobody close to Tinubu was bold enough to challenge him on his “Emi l’okan” outing like B.D. did.

As far as I am concerned the present-day blowback of “Emi l’okan” is not un-equivalent to how Alhaji Gashash reacted in Kano back in the day.

A Sicilian message is a coded means of communication used in the Italian-American mafia to convey an unequivocal message. Like Alhaji Gashash did using Gaskiya Ta Fi Kwabo.

Meanwhile, a Peruvian necktie is a martial-arts head lock used to trap an opponent to an inescapable submission. Exactly like the same-faith ticket Tinubu was cornered into yet President Muhammadu Buhari endeavored to avoid it ahead of the 2015 polls.

 Therefore, on Tinubu, the signals from the Villa are too scrambled to properly read and the body language of Mr. President is too complex to complex to discern. Not unlike Sanusi I and Sanusi II.

B.D. might not be a member of the Kaduna Mafia. He however remains a Kaduna insider.

“Kamun kazan kuku” is a Hausa adage that originated from a domestic workplace situation during the British colonial era when a cook (kuku) was ordered to prepare a cockerel (kaza) meal.

 The said cook failed in soliciting the cooperation of his co-workers the gardener and mai-gad to trap the evasive poultry bird across the wide expanse of the master’s GRA compound.

But after a strenuous solo effort, the stubborn cockerel was eventually caught by the highly exhausted cook. The adage connotes how the domestic servant went to extra lengths to ensure no escape for the kaza.

Whether or not the kuku could after such a hot chase muster his culinary skills to prepare a befitting meal for the master has never been said.

Nonetheless, I find, “Kamun kazan kuku” a convenient metaphor for Tinubu’s efforts from Eagle Square to his recent foray into the Birnin Gwari axis of Kaduna State to the campaign. Like any good kuku would do he is focused on the task ahead irrespective of the non-cooperation of the other  “gardeners” and “mai-gads” that contested the APC primaries with him.

Whether or not he has the sincere blessing of the Villa is entirely another matter.

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