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Of Cobras And Mongooses

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“Did you call me a hunchback?”

“Me? Why would I do such a thing? I was only talking about that other man with a hill on his back and chest.”

The above dialogue is an approximation of what number of people interpret the denial of Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu that his latest salvo in Abeokuta was meant for President Muhammadu Buhari.

Tinubu had added a brand new twist to the present gasoline shortage and the choice of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to revamp the N200, N500 and 1,000 banknotes when he insinuated that each developments had been contrived to sabotage his victory on the forthcoming polls. He declared: “Let them increase the price of fuel, let them continue to hoard fuel, only they know where they have hoarded fuel, they hoarded money, they hoarded Naira; we will go and vote and we will win. Even if they change the ink on Naira notes. Whatever their plans, it will come to naught. We are going to win…”

The PDP presidential campaign organisation opportunistically, however fairly understandably, latched on to what it noticed as a monumental gaffe and berated Tinubu for insulting Buhari. The PDP stated, inter alia, that, “Our campaign finds it pathetic that Asiwaju Tinubu is seeking a face-saving measure ahead of his shattering electoral defeat by shedding crocodile tears and claiming that the redesigning of the Naira notes and the fuel crisis under the APC administration, which he has reportedly been corruptly benefitting, were plots to scuttle the 2023 general elections…”

The PDP added that, “Only politicians who have always won elections by relying on bullion vans have become troubled over the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) monetary policy to redesign the Naira.” The opposition party further accused Tinubu of attempting to distance himself from the Buhari administration which he helped to bring into office.

Nigerian politics is in a world of its own. Imagine PDP attempting to sound more Buharist than Tinubu! This is to not indict PDP, although. There is little question that, had been the shoe to be on the opposite foot, the APC would have gladly obliged with the same intervention.

So, only a one-sided analyst will take PDP’s opinion of APC, or APC’s impression of PDP as gospel fact. Both events have buffeted one another with a number of the vilest assaults for the reason that present campaign season began.

Twenty-four hours after the Abeokuta outburst, nevertheless, Tinubu pooh-poohed PDP’s allegation that he had insulted the Buhari administration. His vituperations, he said, had been directed at PDP itself. (Nigerians on social media have been asking if PDP was answerable for redesigning the Naira!)

He contended that the misunderstanding of his speech arose out of the truth that he spoke in Yoruba language. “Those who do not understand the nuances of this richly layered and subtle language may have inadvertently yet erroneously missed the true meaning of what I said while attempting to translate my statement”, he argued.

No one is fooled by that spin, particularly when an insider, Prof Itse Sagay, took the lid off all pretences. Sagay reaffirmed Tinubu’s allegations.

Said Sagay, “What Emefiele is trying to do in saying you cannot use the existing currency after the 31st of January, in a situation where the new currency is not available to be used, is a plot to create disaffection for the government and indirectly create an unfavourable image for that government before the populace in a few weeks to an election… What is surprising is that no one is stopping him. The president has not stopped him … It is just incredible”.

On gasoline shortage, Sagay noted, “This is going to be three months now and the NNPC is saying there is no shortage, they have enough supply for another three months. Yet, we cannot find petrol anywhere. Somebody is playing a game. I suspect after the election we are going to have petrol. I agree with what Tinubu is saying. Something underhand is going on in this country which is intended to affect the outcome of the elections.”

Although the gloves are actually off and the spokespersons of presidential candidates have to dig deep to handle the fallout, I nonetheless can’t fathom why they will’t appear to harmonise their campaign organisation’s position on particular points. Each spokesperson has his/her own peculiar yarn to any specific query — which makes the general public surprise what the true position is.

We all know that rebuttals include the territory, however as Judge Judy Sheindlin, the American actuality court docket show hostess all the time says, “If you tell the truth, you don’t have to have a good memory… If it doesn’t make common sense, it’s probably not true” In this social media period, spokespersons stroll a tightrope as a result of the general public can, via only one messaging app, string collectively the assorted conflicting solutions given to the same query by totally different spokespeople working for the same candidate. The Internet by no means forgets. When your camp is noted for lies, the world is not going to consider you even once you’re telling the reality.

The fact, so far as I can see, lies in the undercurrents. There are so many conspiracy theories flying in every single place, from the believable to the outlandish, however it seems that some APC stalwarts are usually not enamoured of President Buhari’s reluctance to present his party’s candidate undue advantage over different contestants. They criticise his declaration in London last year, to the impact that he would assure a degree enjoying area for all contestants.

In that interview, Buhari had declared that Nigerians ought to vote whoever they like from whichever political party throughout the 2023 common elections. He warned that no person could be allowed to mobilise assets and thugs to intimidate people in any constituency. “My aim is to make sure that Nigerians believe that we respect them as an administration. That’s what I want to go down in Nigerian history for as a leader,” the president said.

Even although he had made his principled stance recognized, when requested to evaluate the probabilities of the APC in the 2023 elections, Buhari nonetheless sided along with his party; “We’re going to win the election”, he predicted.

But that isn’t sufficient, say his critics. They’d reasonably he led out the troops in any respect rallies and pulled all stops to put in his party’s candidate. Political watchers have, nevertheless, counselled that essentially the most pressing want of anybody who desires to turn into Nigeria’s president is NOT a presidential Deus ex machina gadget however oratorical self-discipline. Too typically, aides of political bigwigs worship their principals reasonably than information and tutor them in the fragile artwork of messaging; this outcomes in avoidable hoopla for which numerous hours will then be spent attempting to paper over the cracks. Say what you’ll, it’s ill-advised to solid innuendoes at a sitting president.

I want all of the 18 presidential candidates properly. I have gone on document in the past as sharing free PR hints on messaging and disaster administration. In that same spirit, I wish to counsel our political cobras to do not forget that nature has by no means birthed a thesis with out its corresponding antithesis. For each political cobra, there’s a mongoose.

The cobra is fearsome. Its chunk is a medical emergency. The quantity of neurotoxin it may ship in a single chunk is sufficient to kill 20 people, and even an elephant. King cobra venom impacts the respiratory centres in the mind, inflicting respiratory arrest and cardiac failure. The king cobra, largest of the species, is a sight to behold in its splendour and majesty.

The mongoose, then again, is a small carnivorous mammal with a long face and body, small, rounded ears, quick legs, and a long, tapering tail. Its size ranges from 24 to 58 cm; it weighs between 320 g to five kg. It is to this relative Lilliputian that Providence has handed the important thing to the Cobra’s destruction. The Mongoose is a pugnacious, formidable hunter. Its strikes are lightning-quick. In a typical fight with the cobra, the mongoose raises itself on its quick legs and snaps the snake by the snout. The cobra struggles, even tries to coil itself across the mongoose, however the game is over. King cobra turns into a meal.

To recognize its legendary fame as a cobra killer, think about what occurred in India when a snake catcher was summoned to catch a cobra that had been a menace in a big family compound. The snake catcher turned up and produced a mongoose from his bag. And, pronto, the mongoose dragged out the snake!

Now, speaking about political cobras and mongooses, the place do you situate the controversial developments in Osun State the place the electoral tribunal has simply swung the pendulum in favour of former Governor Oyetola? The drama has only simply begun!




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